It was two months of hard work, but it was worth it. Vanessa Bren, owner of Meraki Salon and Spa in Chatfield, formerly known as Shear Class, recently changed both the location and name of her salon.
Bren and her husband Dustin, both Chatfield natives, have two children, four-year-old Alaina and two-year-old Beckett, and are expecting another daughter on March 1. The family lives on a small hobby farm south of Chatfield.
Three years ago, Bren, who earned her Cosmetology license at the Rochester School of Hair Design, purchased Shear Class from the previous owner. At the time, the salon occupied a rental space connected to the liquor store in Chatfield.
After operating Shear Class for over two years, she decided it was time to move her business forward by purchasing her own property. “I was far enough into my career that I knew I wanted to own my own building,” Bren said.
She began looking at her options and was toying with the idea of building from scratch when she found a better opportunity. The former Kwik Trip building at 114 North Main Street in Chatfield was for sale and she decided to buy it.
Since she was changing the location of her salon, she decided that it would also be a good time to change the name from Shear Class to Meraki Salon and Spa. Bren chose the name Meraki because it means “Doing something with total love and pure soul. It is leaving a little piece of yourself in your creative work” in Greek. It’s a message that she feels represents her business perfectly.
“It never really felt like it was my own,” she said about the name the business came with when she purchased it. It was a lot more work than she anticipated to change the name to Meraki Salon and Spa, but definitely worth it.
When Bren purchased the former Kwik Trip building, nothing had been changed since the gas station moved out. “We had to redo everything from the floor up,” she said.
Plumbing, walls, flooring, etc., it all had to be renovated before the Meraki Salon and Spa could move in. Bren’s husband, Dustin, did 90% of the work himself, spending mornings and evenings there before and after his full-time job.
“It was rough having him gone all the time like that,” Bren said. But the value of not having to pay someone else to do all that work was definitely worth it.
Bren moved Meraki Salon and Spa into its new space during Thanksgiving week, 2016 and hosted an open house that Saturday. The first official day of operation took place on November 28.
Meraki Salon and Spa offers a full menu of services, including hair coloring, cuts for both men and women, perms, waxing, wedding hair and makeup, and more. Aveda and Kenra beauty products are available at the salon.
Moving to a larger location allowed Bren to expand the services that the salon offers. In addition to the four stylists who work at the salon, Shelle Johnson, Lindsay Eide, Jennifer Hanson, and Jess Horsman, she also employs Stephanie Copeman, a massage therapist/manicurist who began in January. Both services have been steadily picking up since then, and Bren has every reason to believe that they will continue to grow in popularity. Copeman is currently attending school to become an aesthetician and will also begin offering facial services in the fall of 2017.
“Now that the holidays are over, and we’ve been here for a good couple of months, I plan to finish getting settled in,” Bren said, adding that there are still some finishing touches, such as decorating, that need to be completed.
“The move has been wonderful,” Bren noted. She’s received a lot of positive feedback from her clients, many of whom are impressed with the amount of space the salon has in the new location.
To schedule an appointment at Meraki Salon and Spa, you can call (507) 867-1674. You can also find the salon on Facebook.