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Awards & Contests

Salons of the Year 2019: The Ultimate Before and After

by Stacey Soble | April 25, 2019
A dramatic side by side comparison, shows the vision and courage the Emma Justine team had when transforming a crumbling old building into a gorgeous modern salon.
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A dramatic side by side comparison, shows the vision and courage the Emma Justine team had when transforming a crumbling old building into a gorgeous modern salon.
Built in 1880, the building's last tenant was an antiques store that vacated seven years ago.
2/8

Show All
Built in 1880, the building's last tenant was an antiques store that vacated seven years ago.
To create the large storefront windows Migirova desired, contractors had to build a concrete reinforcement that was going to take up a good amount of space in the retail area.
3/8

Show All
To create the large storefront windows Migirova desired, contractors had to build a concrete reinforcement that was going to take up a good amount of space in the retail area.
Migirova cleverly encased those concrete reinforcements with bench seating, adding custom cushions that matched the salon.
4/8

Show All
Migirova cleverly encased those concrete reinforcements with bench seating, adding custom cushions that matched the salon.
When contractors removed the old, uneven wood flooring, they found a crumbling foundation.
5/8

Show All
When contractors removed the old, uneven wood flooring, they found a crumbling foundation.
Because the foundation was crumbling, the building had to be lifted, stabilized and reinforced with concrete walls.
6/8

Show All
Because the foundation was crumbling, the building had to be lifted, stabilized and reinforced with concrete walls.
The floor of the salon today.
7/8

Show All
The floor of the salon today.
The building's original parking space only had room for four cars. When the contractor dug it up to expand it, they found the foundation of another former building beneath it.
8/8

Show All
The building's original parking space only had room for four cars. When the contractor dug it up to expand it, they found the foundation of another former building beneath it.
A dramatic side by side comparison, shows the vision and courage the Emma Justine team had when transforming a crumbling old building into a gorgeous modern salon.
1/8
Slider
A dramatic side by side comparison, shows the vision and courage the Emma Justine team had when transforming a crumbling old building into a gorgeous modern salon.
Built in 1880, the building's last tenant was an antiques store that vacated seven years ago.
2/8
Slider
Built in 1880, the building's last tenant was an antiques store that vacated seven years ago.
To create the large storefront windows Migirova desired, contractors had to build a concrete reinforcement that was going to take up a good amount of space in the retail area.
3/8
Slider
To create the large storefront windows Migirova desired, contractors had to build a concrete reinforcement that was going to take up a good amount of space in the retail area.
Migirova cleverly encased those concrete reinforcements with bench seating, adding custom cushions that matched the salon.
4/8
Slider
Migirova cleverly encased those concrete reinforcements with bench seating, adding custom cushions that matched the salon.
When contractors removed the old, uneven wood flooring, they found a crumbling foundation.
5/8
Slider
When contractors removed the old, uneven wood flooring, they found a crumbling foundation.
Because the foundation was crumbling, the building had to be lifted, stabilized and reinforced with concrete walls.
6/8
Slider
Because the foundation was crumbling, the building had to be lifted, stabilized and reinforced with concrete walls.
The floor of the salon today.
7/8
Slider
The floor of the salon today.
The building's original parking space only had room for four cars. When the contractor dug it up to expand it, they found the foundation of another former building beneath it.
8/8
Slider
The building's original parking space only had room for four cars. When the contractor dug it up to expand it, they found the foundation of another former building beneath it.

When we are judging the Salons of the Year salon design competition, we are primarily focused on the breathtaking after-design images each applicant enters. But sometimes it’s a before image snuck into the stack of pictures that truly makes us gasp.

That happened this year with Emma Justine Hair Lounge and Spa in Middletown, Kentucky—one of our Salons of Distinction. Owned by Amie Migirova, the salon is housed in a renovated storefront on Main Street in the town of 7,500. which was founded shortly after the Revolutionary War. When looking for a location for the salon, Migirova ambitiously chose a building built in 1880, whose last tenant was an antiques store seven years ago.

Although the building was abandoned and deteriorating, Migirova loved that it was located in the heart of downtown and it’s height allowed it to tower above the other boutiques and shops on the street. In addition to renovation though, the building needed some modifications to make it work for the salon. Migirova wanted a storefront with large windows and oversized doors. Getting her plans approved required several appearances before the town’s historic commission, then working through several denials before a final agreement was reached.

When the contractors removed the old uneven wooden flooring, they discovered the foundation was crumbling and needed to be reinforced. The building had to be lifted and stabilized, and reinforced with concrete walls. Before the new concrete floor was poured, Migirova decided to add hints of gray flecks and diamond sparkles to create a unique flooring.

To add the large storefront windows, contractors had to reinforce the support frame. The concrete foundation reinforcement for the windows was going to take up a lot of space—to utilize the space wisely, they encased it with bench seating and custom cushions to match the salon. USB outlets were installed into the bench seating to allow clients to charge their phones while waiting.

Originally, the parking area for the salon only had space for four cars. When the team attempted to expand it, they discovered that there was a concrete foundation of another building underneath. This set back plans to open another month, but they ended up building a retaining wall and facing it with sparkling white brick, which added to the exterior design.

Read Emma Justine's 2019 Salons of the Year profile, and see more after shots. 

When I look at the before pictures of the space, I have to give it Migirova. It takes a great deal of vision, courage and perseverance to see a renovation project on this scale through.  Middletown’s mayor and historic commission were grateful she did—after 27 months of construction time, they organized a ribbon cutting at the salon, publicly thanking Migirova for undertaking this project, sticking to the vision and ultimately giving the neighborhood a face lift and an economic boost.

Will this client post a five-star review for her balayage service? The answer matters for many...

Are You Raking In 5-Star Reviews? If Not, Here’s How.

by Staff

You drive by that new restaurant in town and wonder if you should give it a try. Your first step? Grabbing your phone and checking the place’s online reviews. If they’re good, you go ahead and make a reservation. If not, you probably pass. And guess what? This is exactly how prospective clients are assessing your salon.

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2019 Salons of the Year: Totalee on the Alley

Awards & Contests

2019 Salons of the Year: Totalee on the Alley

by Stacey Soble

Step into the 1920s with this speakeasy-inspired salon. As clients arrive at Totalee on the Alley, a valet greets them and directs them to a semi-hidden steel door. What's on the other side, a luxurious and exclusive vibe, has earned Totalee a Salons of Distinction honor in the 2019 Salons of the Year.

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2019 Salons of the Year: Salon Ludic

Awards & Contests

2019 Salons of the Year: Salon Ludic

by Stacey Soble

The gray-marbled, high-shine concrete flooring that are balanced with the masculine touch of black took boxes give Salon Ludic an eclectic feel. A high-top table where clients can relax and recharge their phones serves as a centerpiece in the salon, which has earned a Salons of Distinction honor in the 2019 Salons of the Year.

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