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Life & Work with Shelly Shellhorn of Baltimore

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shelly Shellhorn.

Hi Shelly, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I first moved to Baltimore at the end of 2016 from Denver, Colorado. I moved here with barely any money and no job and didn’t know what I was going to do! I had worked briefly for a failing Irish Pub that was anything but a nice place to work. One day while I was working there, a new friend that I had met prior to working just happened to be eating lunch there. She told me that she loved my attitude and style and asked if I would like to work for her in her salon called Crafted. I declined the job because I had no experience in the salon industry and thanked her for the kind offer.

Fast forward to a few months after that, I ran into her somewhere else and let her know how miserable I was at this restaurant and told her how poorly I had been treated there. She asked me if I’d like to work for her once more and I quickly accepted the invite!

Her and some of the lovely team members at the salon trained me from the ground up and really taught me everything I needed to know about how to be successful in the shop.

After about four years of working at Crafted, I had a very emotional and amazing conversation with her. She was unhappy being tied down (as she is a person that lives for traveling and doing mobile hair) and I had mentioned that I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life career-wise.

BOOM! At that exact moment, we both had this lightening reaction and knew exactly what we needed to do. I became the new owner of Crafted Hair Studio on February 3, 2020, and she became the mobile stylist she’d always dreamed of being.

It was pretty crazy for the takeover to happen at that time because that was only a few weeks before the world had to shut down for Covid-19! With the help and love of my wonderful team, as well as the incredible amount of support from our community, we were somehow able to make it through being closed for three entire months. It was so hard, but now we are back and so grateful to be thriving the way we are now.

I feel like this was the opportunity of a lifetime for both myself and the previous owner. So cool!

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Like I had mentioned before, the biggest struggle that we’ve had to go through was being forced to close our doors for three months during the height of the Coronavirus outbreak. We were all terrified (as the rest of the world was of course) and had no idea what the future might hold for us. We barely had any money to operate with, and I was so new into this strange new world of being a salon owner. It was scary as hell! I will be forever grateful to my team who stuck by my side and also to our incredible community here in Baltimore.

Now that we are back in action, I know that we have an amazing future ahead, and I feel more strong and confident than I ever have in my entire life.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I am the sole owner of Crafted Hair Studio. My job is to create a fun, safe environment for all types of people from all different walks of life, as well as maintaining a creative and motivating atmosphere for my team. I am here almost every day of the week and help wherever I may be needed whether it be at the front desk doing reception, assisting my stylists, tending to our plants, etc.

The thing I’m most proud of is how much I’ve accomplished in the past few years. I had experienced this major career shift and personal life shift, I had painted and remodeled the entire salon by myself when we were closed down, I lost my Dad to cancer and I also lost my sweet old one eyed cat all in the span of a years time. It was brutal!

What sets me apart from others in this field I think, is my background as a punk rocker! I’ve seen some crazy stuff in my time, but I feel like that made me a unique boss that prioritizes my team over profit. We are very untraditional, but that gives us the space to really be ourselves and give our clients to feel comfortable however they may be.

So, before we go, how can our readers or others connect or collaborate with you? How can they support you?
I am open to any collaborations really! I love to work with local artists, musicians, entertainers, designers, etc. so the door is open if anyone reading this has an idea! We plan on doing a few art shows and possibly do a vintage market after hours at some point, but we are waiting until it’s totally safe to do so.

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Image Credits

Danny Siebenhaar

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