T W O .
Wow. Thank you. Two years went incredibly fast. Nostalgia is hitting us hard this week as we look over old blogs, camera rolls, and re-live the nightmares of construction. So much has led up to who we’ve become today. It’s great to call 500 Seneca our home.
We’ve created memories, crafted transformations, celebrated our city + the arts in so many ways. This journey started with a group of like-minded people in the industry, and has doubled in the time since opening our doors. Every day feels new, but it’s like the crew was always together.
Two years of memories are a lot to go over in our minds: from our grand opening party, to our fundraising ventures, partnering with Lockhouse, planning an expansion in less than two years, making friends overseas in the GDY community, traveling together, learning together- we could go on forever.
The best compliment we continue to regularly receive is that it feels comfortable in the shop. That is exactly what we strive for alongside our craft: a home for all to express themselves.
This week, our friends + guests helped form a list of memorable moments during our beginning…
Some of our faves were:
“Putting the coffee bar together.” -Danielle (Thank you for helping, there is always a coffee waiting for you!)
“I love your Instagram giveaways! Dustin won his very first Father’s Day!” -Sara (Congrats again, Perry’s!)
“The best parties in town.” -Ally (Thanks for helping make all our fundraisers a success!)
“Baby Powder.” -Jordan (We’re still sorry!)
“Loved seeing the crown crew at Pride- great float, great energy, great hair!” -Kate (Thanks! We love breaking our industry standards down + standing proud! #hairishair)
“Coming in and having Monster sleep on my lap or Bogan spin my chair around!” -Jean (Miss you, mamma!)
“Nana drinking Fireball at the opening party” -KTB (See the Media page, lol.)
“When Grace bleached my hair + burned my tan off…” -Fred (That icy hairline look…)
…That IG Ask-session was hilarious + emotional.
We are just so thankful to get to do what we love doing together, and make a difference in the world. Giving back is what we do. Breaking the gender-based price structure of the hair business is what we do. We’ve even seen some other locals adopt our pricing values since we opened, and that is a true step toward changing this industry.
2018 was especially crazy with our Ignite Buffalo opportunity! Because of Ignite, we have been able to bring on two new crew members, schedule education with both national and local instructors in the fields of hair and business, had a mini-renovation to boost productivity, expanded hours of operation, boosted marketing strategies, and streamlined the efficiency of our systems and operations. We’re so proud to be part of that Buffalo million.
Thank you to all our families, guests, supporters, friends far + near, Ignite alum, mentors, brands who have supported us since the beginning… We can’t wait to see what the future brings.
*header image by Evan Duckett, soon to be in Oxford Pennant form.
*images collected via life since we opened.
The night was so special. Going with the 1970’s beach party theme, we featured Buffalo’s own Deadwolf + DJ CropTop (Alison Pieroni) to keep everybody moving. Veronica Lace mc’d again, judging the party’s most exciting moment- the winners of the dance contest! Our Qween + King absolutely killed it out there on the dance floor, complete with a costume change!
The magical good vibes continued all the way into the cobblestone street, where the BuffaLove Bus had set up camp to capture all the moments we wanted to remember forever. (If you need a wow-factor for any event, look no further!)
We couldn’t have done it without our wonderful partners in fundraising, Lockhouse Distillery! Reann Nye once again created a stunning poster for this event. Even Second Chic and BKind City as well as one of our hair care brands, Surface, made generous donations in the form of party favors, costume needs, and contest prizes.
Now, let the nostalgia begin…
It's awesome to have known the Savarinos for so long, and to see their dream happen. They let OURS happen, too. Check out the story of 500 Seneca! We're happy to be featured in this video.
This may be the most crazy opportunity such a young business has had. We didn't know what we were in for, but we took home one of the prizes that will help us grow our business! Ignite Buffalo is a grant provided by Facebook, 43North, M&T Bank, Amazon Web Services, Woo Commerce + more.
Out of 477 applicants, we made the Top 50. That gave us the opportunity to pitch to some very important people in the business world as well as our community. Hours after pitching our culture + needs to the panel, we received a phone call that we made the Top 27! No words can describe that feeling. Twenty-seven Small Businesses left that theater on Wednesday night taking with us a Million $. Facebook Business streamed the event live, giving Buffalo a global platform to show that we are cleaning up this rust belt we love so much.
Making the Top 27 was based on the criteria of being different from your pack, creating new jobs, growing existing company culture and infrastructure, continuing education for the team, and giving back to the community in which we thrive.
In short, our lives are forever changed by this experience and the $25k gift we have been granted. We have many ideas, and are so incredibly lucky to have had this jump-start as such a young business!
Some of our friends like Barrel + Brine and Oxford Pennant took home $50k + $100k prizes- Bravo! Our buddies Spoke & Dagger and BreadHive also took home a $25k prize. We cannot wait to see what all of the other 26 businesses make of their grants.
In addition to our grant, we will receive a year of business mentoring, which is actually priceless.
Below is a quick recap of the evening's outcome (Channel & anchor Jeff gets his hair cut in the shop!), some links to news coverage, and a few pics from the night...