Weston Voices: Lessons in Life and Hair with Stacey Deodato
Yesterday the Owl took some time out from taking kids to an orthopedist who ran 1 1/2 hours late (imagine that letter to Micheli), and surveying plantings in Weston to visit with Stacey Deodato, hairstylist extraordinaire. Stacey grew up in Weston, graduated from Weston High School, and now runs her own salon in Newton, close to the Watertown border. Since the Owl truly madly deeply hates to get her hair cut, having the opportunity to talk with a fun young person about life and dreams seemed a good way to convince herself to go.
First of all, know that Stacey Marie Salon is in a cool and Covid-friendly new building — with parking!!! (sorry, having a flashback to one hellish hair appointment on Newbury)–right off the Charles River pathway recently covered by the Owl. It’s also right near the Stop & Shop and Direct Tire–both places the Owl seems to frequent with a disturbing regularity.
The best part of the My Salon suites location is all of the salons are mini-headquarters–each one leased by an independent operator. The suite contains enough space for a sink, a chair and a cake table. Okay there was no cake table but there could be. So if you get crazed by the big hair places with the rows of folks checking out your ‘do, noise of a thousand hair dryers, and agony over who and how much to tip the phalanx of helpers, this is your spot. It’s quiet. It’s pretty. And you can ask Stacey lots of questions.
It didn’t take long to see that Stacey has broken the Weston mold, where success seems to be measured on which school you got into, or what car you drive. She’s followed a different route.
“I loved the theatre program at the high school,” said Stacey, “but I wasn’t the one on the stage. I did hair and makeup fo the actors.” She also was the one who got ready for prom at 8 am so she could get all her friends’ hair and makeup done in time for the party.
“I was always told that [hair and makeup] was just a hobby –‘ that’s not a career,’ people said. I got that into my head and even though I loved it, I let the pressure push me to go to Roger Williams College even though I knew I didn’t really want to go to college. It took me a year and a half to find the courage to be different.”
“Every step of the way, people are going to say “no” when you’re a young person not following the established path. I found that every “no” pushed me closer to doing what I wanted to do.”
After her studies in cosmetology were completed, Stacey started out at a bigger salon in Framingham. She soon realized she wanted to be fully in charge–not only of the creative but the administration and the management and the marketing.
“The leap to start my own business was terrifying but in the end, it was a moment of “f*** it, why not? We are all so frightened to fail but really if you try and it doesn’t work, there is always a plan B. You learn something about everything you do and you try. “
The hardest part of what she’s doing now? Not surprisingly, it’s building the business and the clientele. While the salon opened in June 2020, the series of Covid restrictions and people being wary about hair salons really slowed the start. “One of the things I like about these “1 on 1″ suites is that it’s easier to keep things controlled and sanitized.” All clients and Stacey do stay masked, but that’s pretty much the normal for now.
“In terms of my set-up, I like to get a read on new clients–are they in a rush? Do they feel like talking or not? It’s all good for me…one of the only things I shy away from is doing a whole new look on a first visit. That’s just not setting up for success. If someone hates it, they’ll never be back. Some of the more challenging updos as well I have to talk through with a client.”
Stacey can do hair color including balayage, and though she doesn’t advertise the service, she is a makeup master so you can try to convince her for that for your next big event. She has some special promotions going on now for prom-goers, and probably graduating seniors as well. The Owl is none of the above but got a really nice haircut that the rest of the Owl family didn’t even notice.
You can find Stacey on facebook, on her website, probably on Instagram but the Owl is incompetent at that, and probably at a regular old phone number. While she’s slightly out of home range, combine it with a water walk and a shop, and you’re golden.
Stacy Marie is at 150 California Street, Suite 205 in Newton.