July 25, 2012

Salon 241 Gets a Makeover

Rachael Chase and Sarah Nolan look back at the thought process that went into their redesign of Salon 241.

With fashion-forward clientele, highly-trained stylists, and a perfect downtown Northampton location, Salon 241 was looking to create an interior space to match their vibrant business. Our simple design approach utilized paint, lighting, and a new window treatment to completely transform the space while maintaining the existing layout and flow that were working well for the salon owners.

Before & After

The results were so successful that our design was recognized as one of the best in 2012 by Salon Today, winning the Salon of Distinction designation!

By painting the existing acoustic ceiling tile grey, it became a backdrop for the custom gingko leaf graphic we designed to carry across the ceiling and wrap down the walls, activating the ceiling plane and adding movement to the long, narrow space. The graphic, painted by Jonathan Kohrman, also meanders down the stairs to the exterior of the building, inviting clients inside and acting as signage on the street for the second floor salon.

Ginkgo Leaf Patterning

Similarly, the painted faux wood grain on the existing register counter makes it new and graphically bold. Behind the counter, aluminum numbers in the salon's signature font are mounted on the textured brick wall together with the painted ginkgo leaf. The combination of the ginkgo leaf with the salon's font is so successful that it has since been incorporated into their print advertising.

Reception Counter

Energy efficient LED light fixtures replace incandescent track fixtures, drastically reducing the heat level in the space and providing more even light. Decorative pendants draw the eye to the register counter and waiting area. 


A golden thread curtain typically used in the theater provides a screen across the front picture window, casting lines of shadow and light that play across the floor like golden strands of hair. The amount of sunlight entering through the large street-facing window had made working conditions uncomfortable for the salon users, so the curtain serves to modulate the light while creating a very dramatic effect across the wood floors.

Dramatic Curtain