Dinner with five-star friends

The Most Wanted and It List Grand Final may be the biggest and most exciting night in the Creative HEAD calendar, but the Winners’ Soiree is surely the most special – a chance for us to spend quality time with the UK’s most creative, innovative and forward-thinking hairdressers. And that’s official!

For this year’s trophy-holders, it was an opportunity to kick back with friends and colleagues over a laid-back supper in the cosy surrounds of The Apartment at the Hoxton Hotel, Shoreditch, and to discuss key industry issues in a fantastic Q&A session hosted by Creative HEAD editor Amanda Nottage.


Our attendees included:
Andrew Cannon, Ruffians – Best Salon Experience
Darren Ambrose, D&J Ambrose – Creative Talent
Petros Mairoudhiou, Trevor Sorbie – Hair Trend
Lisa Shepherd, Lisa Shepherd Salons – Award for Innovation (Express Color Bar)
Joe Causier and Malcolm Murphy, Malcolm Murphy Hair – The Entrepreneur and Business Thinker
Jonathan De Francesco, Brooks & Brooks – The Visionary, The Fashionista
Ashleigh Hodges, Flame Hair Studios – The It Girl
Richard Phillipart, The Boutique Salon & Spa – The It Guy
Olivia Butt-Freer, Lisa Shepherd Salons – The Rising Star
Mitchell Wilson, Laundry – Best New Salon
Sam McKnight – Session Stylist, Hair Icon

As you would expect, the conversation positively crackled as our winners covered everything from women in hairdressing to whether Facebook is a dying social media network. The results will help inform future features and content in Creative HEAD and creativeheadmag.com, but in the meantime, feast your eyes on these gems we overheard..

Hair Icon Sam McKnight’s advice to Rising Star Olivia Butt-Freer:

Be available. If you turn down a job, even regular clients will go elsewhere because they have to get the job done. The next thing you know, they’re enjoying working with the other guy…

On the virtues and otherwise of social media…

My Facebook has changed from being a personal thing to something I use to promote myself for my work.

– Richard Phillipart

The reason there is a whole bunch of us who are good friends, even though we work in ‘competitor’ salons, is because of social media. We talk to one another all the time, via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

– Ashleigh Hodges

Our business would not be what it is today without social media. It has raised our profile and it has brought us clients.

– Joe Causier

People can say the most horrible things about you on social media. We’ve learned to turn a blind eye – it’s a necessary evil of social media that you just have to deal with.

– Lisa Shepherd

On why hairdressing is the ‘happiest’ of careers…

I have a client who is just regrowing her hair after chemotherapy. She’s not going to recover from her cancer, but I was able to change her hair colour and it brought her so much joy. I got more pleasure out of that experience than all the global travel I do.

– Ashleigh Hodges

On the difference between a good hairdresser and an award-winning hairdresser…

I work seven days a week for most of the year. One time, I had a young stylist who wanted to assist me on a shoot. I said, ‘Yes, absolutely – you’ll need to be ready first thing on Sunday. She pulled a face and said, ‘Oh, I’ve got a party on Saturday night…’. I can’t tell you how many parties I’ve missed because I wanted to get ahead with work…

– Ashleigh Hodges

See more pics here

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