Katie Soulen has been dreaming of opening her own salon almost as long as the seven years she’s been cutting hair.
This month, Soulen made that dream a reality with the opening of Halcyon Salon on Penn Ave in Garfield.
Halcyon means a time of peace and tranquility, and the salon was designed to suit its name. Minimalist art and Danish mid-century modern furniture welcomes visitors to relax, take a break from the outside and be themselves. “Life’s hard enough, we want our guests to embrace who they are,” explains Soulen.
With her team of two stylists Jamie Scafuri and Allie Overholt, Soulen encourages clients to work with their natural hair texture and color to create cuts that are as unique as each person that walks in. From her time cutting at Metamorphosis Salon in Lawrenceville, and her community engagement giving free hair cuts with local nonprofit Hello Neighbor, Soulen’s seen firsthand the transformative nature of a good cut.
“Everyone is dealing with something when they come to sit in my chair,” Soulen explains, and she wanted Halcyon to be a place where anyone can feel safe enough to try something new. That means some traditional salon conventions are thrown out the window. Gender-neutral pricing is in place for services, “It doesn’t matter how you identify” Soulen says, “hair is hair.”
A Part of Penn Ave
When Soulen found Halcyon’s location on the Penn Ave corridor, “the space looked as raw as I felt at the time.” As a first-time business owner, she’s grown and learned alongside the build-out of the storefront. She happily namedrops the Pittsburgh entrepreneurs that have helped her along the way – going so far as to keep a running spreadsheet of resources, makers, and collaborators who helped bring Halcyon to life. “The sense of community has been rad,” Soulen says.
It shows in the design of the space. Handcrafted mugs from local artisan Bombabird are loaded with tea from Bantha and coffee from Artisan PGH and offered to guests when they come in. Anne Grushecky helmed the salon’s graphic design, and the team at Meshwork Press took care of printing business cards and signs. Not only has Soulen relied on the local community to make her business a reality, but she also made it a point to work with women in Pittsburgh.
The team at Halcyon is also committed to becoming strong members of the Penn Ave corridor and Garfield. Soulen acknowledges the changing landscape of the area and wants to grow, change and provide what the area needs; “The neighborhood is a living, breathing entity, and we want to be a neighbor that’s kind, patient, and always willing to learn.”
Guests don’t only look good leaving Halcyon with a fresh cut, they’ll feel good about its sustainable initiatives. “The beauty industry can create so much waste,” Soulen reasons, and Halcyon’s products are all organic, “down to what we clean the floors with.”
Halcyon is a certified Green Circle Salon, only one of four in the area, which means they’re committed to the proper disposal of waste, as well as recycling and repurposing products.
It’s not just about green initiatives, says Soulen, it’s also about providing sustainable cuts – “we want your cut and color to last more than the traditional six weeks.” To achieve this, the stylists utilize razor cutting, trimming the hair with a straight-edge razor blade so the cut looks fresh out of the salon chair perfect, longer.
Make the Cut
Ready for a new cut? Halcyon officially opened its doors on November 1, and they’re slowly ramping up services. Want to make an appointment for a cut? Give them a call (412-897-6412) or send them a Direct Message on Instagram for more info.
5008 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15224
P: (412) 897-6412
Photos courtesy of Rose Colored Creative