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Register-Guard Article Feb 2012

A Friendly, Stylish Part of the Neighborhood

Appeared in print: Thursday, Feb. 9, 2012, page E9

Salon Staff

Baybeerry Salon’s staff includes, left to right, Jill Palaniuk, Emily Roche, Samantha Robinhold, Emily Imlach, Allison VanLeuven and Laura Anderson.

Since it opened three-and-a-half years ago, Bayberry Salon has become a fixture in the neighborhood off Coburg Road a few blocks north of Oakway Center, which is just the way owner Samantha Robinhold had envisioned her salon taking root from the start.

Robinhold spent a decade living and working in a bustling suburb of Boston before moving back to Eugene with her husband. “I worked in this little neighborhood salon,” she recalls. “There were about five salons in that area, but everyone did fine. Everyone knew everybody. It was very family-oriented. People could walk to get their haircuts.”

Robinhold wanted to capture that kind of accessibility when she was looking for locations for her salon in Eugene. From Bayberry Salon’s cozy perch on Rustic Place, some of the homes within the residential area just east of the site are visible through the windows. “It’s perfect,” says Robinhold, who lives “on this side of town” herself. “There are neighborhoods back there,” she says, pointing. “It’s really kind of hard to find that in this part of town.”

That neighborliness Robinhold cultivates is also apparent the moment one walks through the door of the brightly lit, intimately styled salon that reminds Robinhold of “the warm feel of an English pub.”

Black styling stations set not too far apart encourage a shared experience and dramatically play off the warm beige walls. Stylists such as Emily Imlach and Jill Wells, along with Robinhold, greet clients with warm smiles and heartfelt hellos. If one must wait a bit for an appointment, no problem: There’s coffee or even wine to savor, along with tasty snacks and home-baked cookies.

“The familiarity sets us apart, I think,” Robinhold says. “We’re not exclusive, so people that come in here get treated well. They’re known by everybody. We recognize you. You want your hair to look nice, but you have to feel like you trust the person. It’s emotional, actually.”

With a psychology background before she went to beauty school, Robinhold truly understands that in the salon there is a level of intimacy in the attentiveness of conversation and in the pampering of hair care, nail care and facial care. “It’s a mutually fulfilling need that we have as humans, I think, and that brings us a little bit closer,” she says of her staff’s attention to personal details.

The friendly ambiance seems to be working, for Bayberry Salon enjoys a steady clientele from all walks of life. “The demographic is really all over the map,” Robinhold adds.

Regular clients include women of all ages and men, as well as children. The kids are treated to a Tootsie Pop for their sitting-still efforts.

Bayberry Salon offers a range of hair design and styling services as well as coloring and highlighting, perming or straightening, and hair conditioning; nail and waxing services also are available. The staff also includes a skin care specialist who offers a range of noninvasive facial treatments.

“We do a lot of color,” Robinhold says. “Our color line is the German brand Schwarzkopf. They’ve been around a long time. They claim it’s organic and plant-based. It doesn’t smell. It’s amazing. There’s a big demand for the natural products.”

AG is another line of products the salon carries.

To meet its clients’ needs, Bayberry Salon has a couple of full-time stylists and a few part-time stylists with more than 40 years of experience combined among them. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. five days a week, Tuesday through Saturday, Bayberry also is open by appointment.

The stylists pride themselves on being there with the clients from start to finish. “Some of the stylists take an hour for appointments, some less. It depends on the person, or what you’re here for,” Robinhold says. “And we’re very helpful with each other, so if someone needs help, we’ll step in.”

Or, if someone needs a cookie. Robinhold offers one to one of her clients who’s seated in the stylist’s chair and ready for a shampoo and cut.

“I made them myself,” Robinhold says with a chuckle. “There’s a story behind that cookie recipe.”

Bayberry Salon
392 Rustic Place, Eugene

Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday or by appointment. Call 541-485-8331
visit www.bayberrysalon.com.