(and Louis) From Shag Hair
We classify ourselves as the left and the right side of the brain when running the businessSee our handpicked guides to Newcastle
Thanks to the power of social media and word of mouth, Shag Hair, on Newcastle's Darby Street, is consistently growing from strength to strength.
It all started when Grace embarked on her own business and started Shag Hair which she had for about 5 years only two doors down from its current location and about a quarter of the size.
Alana had a background in business and real estate and was looking for a career change when she approached Grace to go into business together.
"She said no".
They have been best friends for 10 years and so Grace admits, "I didn't want to ruin the friendship if it didn't work out".
However, Grace offered Alana to be her assistant over the Christmas period to see if she really would like the industry, "it's not as glamorous as every thinks".
"Six weeks later I went on holidays", explains Alana, "and I came back and Grace was like yes let's do this. When you're working IN your business, you can't work ON your business".
Grace admits, "I didn't realise how many messages I wasn't getting back to, or how many phone calls I was missing". And although Alana isn't a hairdresser by trade, she seems to have a lot of other titles under her belt. "I'm a trade assistant, chief financial officer, toilet cleaner, sweeper, staff management, whatever, all of the above".
"As a hairdresser owning a business I think Alana is the secret weapon to all hair salons", explains Grace, "because she can shampoo, she can blow dry, she can do consultations, she talks to people, she knows everything about hair now because she listens so much. Also, all the paperwork is done, all the bills are paid, everything is in order, the girls are sorted".
Shag Hair now consists of 7.5 team members (Louis, Grace's sausage dog of course) and pride themselves on the friendships they create with each of their clients.
You only have to read through their Facebook reviews to know that these girls are clearly doing something right, and their friendship has only added to this unique partnership.
"We are doing an 8-week challenge at the moment. We do everything together, we holiday together, get our eyebrows waxed together, work together. We can fight like sisters, we can disagree and have the odd fight, but we don't take it personal. We talk about it, we hug and make up".
When I asked them about the future plans for Shag they responded, "Madonna, always Madonna", consistently evolving and staying current.