SPRINGFIELD, Mo- Starting your own business is what people dream of from time to time, but as they dwell more into the dream the reality of money, and all the stressors that come with owning a business come to mind.
Sola Salons has found a way to offer barbers and stylists a chance at achieving their dream.
For some, Sola serves as more as a destination and for others a stepping stone.
Carissa Wilcoxen is a seasoned stylist and has owned a shop at Sola for four years.
"I've been in the industry for about 20 years now," says Carissa Wilcoxen, owner of Riah Salon.
Gavin Bolin has been a cutting hair for about 4 years.
"Barbering school then I worked at a shop for about three years," says Gavin, co-owner of White Stag Barber Co.
His business partner Tyler Fleetwood has had a strong history in the Springfield barber scene.
"I kinda ran the gamut, I've done a little bit of everything. I had a vision, I have a buddy Gavin who shared the same vision and we decided to go together to make it a reality," says Tyler, co-owner of White Stag Barber Co.
Gavin Bolin and Tyler Fleetwood are two young bucks at White Stag Barber Co.
"So this is kind of the best concept for me," says Carissa.
All three though, despite their ages at Sola.
"We've only been here for two weeks," says Gavin.
Are there for the same reasons.
"I'm owning my own salon but I don't have a bunch of overhead, I don't have to have a bunch of people to micromanage. I can just come in and focus on just me and my client," says Carissa.
Sola Salon could be compared to a flea market in the aspect that it has many booths, but each booth holds an easy way of life for a small business. The stylists there searched and found a place they could call their own.
"At 22, there's not very many options for someone to start their business without feeling suffocated you know by a lot of things. Sola makes that very achievable," says Gavin.
"For some people, it's a stepping stone, they go from working in a full-blown salon to working here to see if they could do it working on their own, and then they go do it on their own," says Carissa.
Which is the vision Gavin and Tyler embraced at Sola.
"We're a lot happier, a lot more joyful, we play around a lot more, it's like the environment in where we're at also the environment inside us has completely changed," says Tyler.
"This is actually what I wanted," says Carissa.
With nearly 30 salons in one building, one would think there would be a lot of tension.
"To be quiet honest," says Tyler.
But the opposite is what all three owners say is their favorite parts.
"There's a lot less drama than the salon environment"
"The most least stressful salon that I've ever worked at."
"You get the salon feel, the barbershop feel, and the comradery of other businesses and you don't have to worry about the drama."
Many businesses in Springfield offer this same opportunity for those who want to start a business or salon. Salon Suits has been in Springfield for several years and offers the same services, and the E-Factory in downtown Springfield has space avaliable for those who want to start a business or they com to your business to help you grow.
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