Interview with Claudia: Sugar Fly's #GIRLBOSS2:17 PM
"I'm a dreamer...I have it tattooed on my back. If I didn't follow my dreams, then Sugar Fly wouldn't be here."
Initially the idea for the salon was much more limited and it later evolved into what it is now. I wanted to start out specializing in nail art and selling small unique accessories. It was after a trip to Japan that I saw a whole other world. Nail art is on another level in Japan. When we started Sugar Fly, nail art was just starting to get popular in America. Back then, there wasn’t really any well known nail artists and only a few in the city. It wasn't something people typically asked for because they thought it was “too out there.” I wanted Sugar Fly to bring the whole Japanese feel here but in an urban, American way.
Fashion is so much what influences beauty trends and a lot of it is kept separate. Sugar Fly would be one fun place that you could incorporate the whole beauty experience like nails, hair, makeup, clothing, accessories, and shoes. It would be a one stop shop for trends in all of those areas.
How is Sugar Fly different from other salons in Chicago?
We focus on what the trends are and stay ahead of what is basic. Not there is anything wrong with basic... that's why classic is timeless! We just believe in giving things a little something to make it your own.
It’s also very important for us that everyone feels welcome and that Sugar Fly be a fun place to come. I feel like the staff and the environment kind of embodies that. We’re not pretentious at all and we’re very team oriented.
Who is the Sugar Fly client?
There is not one typical client or customer, but the one thing I would say that they do have in common is that they are not afraid to express their feelings and personality. They are very strong willed. They’re fun.
What kind of team did you want to build for your business?
One that was positive, fun, and creative. People who are all about supporting. People with big ideas who aren't afraid to express them. I feel everyone that we have embodies that.
How do you know when someone makes a good addition to your team?
It is a feeling that I have. No interview is the same because it is based on their personal experience. When I interview, I like to look through the resume to see where their head is at and the road that they’re taking. I ask them “What are your goals? Where do you want to end up?” Based on those answers, if I feel like they have a good grasp on who they are are and how they could complement the team then they're in!
Where do you see Sugar Fly five years from now?
I want to expand our brand to meaning more than just a salon. With the talent that we have, if we could do more editorial photo shoots and fashions shows and get clients that would be interested in that, it would be great. Many stylists enjoy that type of work, but it’s not very consistent, so you need to have a home salon to have a steady clientele. I feel like if we’re able to develop talent and promote them well enough, we can get them that type of work and we can also be their home base. We have the space and the the talent to do it. We have already published several issues of our very own magazine, The Hive, we just need more time to grow.
What do you want Sugar Fly to be known for?
I want us be a trusted name. A lot of times, when people see looks in a magazine and they want to get them done, they’re not entirely sure if they can go to the salon down the street and have it done well. It’s a big risk that a lot of clients are not willing to take unless they know for sure it can be done. If our clients pull something out of a magazine and ask if it can be done, I want them to be confident that they came to the right place. If we can develop a reputation for that, I would be happy.
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