Minnesota native Heather Mackenzie, finds creative momentum between salon ownership, mothering and collaboration with fashions most innovative designers. On Lake Minnetonka, Heather is renowned for the second year running as Lake Minnetonka’s Best Hairstylist 2016 – 2017. With a career launch under New York based salon owners Cutler and Arrojo, Heather is the go to hairstylist in Minnetonka. Heather’s styling rapport has since taken her two seasons a year to New York Fashion Week to work with top designers and their models. With her professional career reaching new heights, Heather and colleague Tonya Cherba recently stepped out of the commission environment to open Petit Atelier in Salons by JC Minnetonka.
With New York Fashion Week quickly approaching in September, Heather muses over technique and approach as a stylist in the designer world. “Lead stylist work with individual designers and makeup artists. The vision board is presented to individual stylists and models alike. The lead stylist will then demonstrate how to create each individual look.” The key to success within the fashion industry is found in precisely detailed technique. “Part the hair here, Lift and spray there. Technique is everything, “ says Heather. Lead stylists are “The Picassos’ of the style Industry,” dedicated to their art, and the style objective. Upon returning from New York Fashion Week, Mackenzie transitions to her private business, adjusting her focus to her clientele, who have all learned how to recognize a high-end style from a mediocre style.
Heather happily disproves the claim that styling success is “80% personality and 20% talent” as her approach demands strong skills and consistency. “Friendliness, relatability and a sense of service count as much as talent and creativity,” she says, “My professional approach as stylist is to focus on what the client asks for, I add some geometric structure to my cuts, while focusing on softness, so that each style is manageable and maintenance free.” Heather’s clients rely on her consistency and have learned the importance of a high-end salon experience from start to finish, Mackenzie says that her clients “now expect a great cut and perfected hair color.”
The Suite Life
As Heather reached her career plateau as a Salon Creative Director, fellow Stylist Tonya Cherba was the perfect match. “When I was in New York, Tonya provided a walk-in cut and color to one of my regular clients, who was thrilled with the outcome. It became apparent then, that our business integrity and skills matched” – collaboration was instantaneous. The potential of sharing suite space, would allow both stylists to retain a larger clientele base, and the freedom to create their ultimate salon experience. “We wanted a salon where we could share space, maintain one another’s creative motivation, all while fueling artistic energy by working in tandem to meet our clients’ needs!”
Heather and Tonya set out to find the right location to start their new career endeavor. “As soon as we saw Salons by JC Minnetonka, we knew we had found the contemporary salon environment that we were seeking.” Soon, the transition was underway; with two highly talented salon professionals to create the ultimate salon experience.
The luxury of salon ownership made balancing business and family more manageable. With business partnership, Heather and Tanya work together to meet the needs of their clients. The benefit of teamwork is a smaller and more intimate client list. There has been complete freedom of their own salon hours allows both business owners to enjoy personal time with family, added specialist education and freelance bridal hairstyling. Outside of business hours, family time is priceless…Heather’s two sons proudly call their mom a “blackbelt hairstylist.” The ultimate salon life has been found with forming positive business relationships while intricately balancing creativity, reliability and value within a fast-paced industry.
Petit Atelier boasts sleek modern design aesthetic, with Gold embellishments, plush black seating, side by side style chairs, and floor to ceiling window front with natural lighting. Heather and Tonya combine their artistic talent, creativity and full spectrum services to provide an upbeat atmosphere. Petit Atelier is dedicated to servicing long term clientele, capturing vibrant looks, all while delivering exceptional service, leaving clients smiling every time.
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