State Board Visit and Salon Opening

As I mentioned in my last post, I just finished a year as a booth renter in a salon on Camano Island. In Washington State, booth renters also have to obtain a salon license, which I did, and which the state put the wrong address on! When I received it last year, I noticed that the state had put my home (mailing) address on my license instead of the salon address. I did call to let them know about the error, at which time they assured me that I had filled out my paperwork correctly, the state had the correct address in the system, and not to worry about it.

On Thursday, March 17 (two days after I got the keys for my new studio), I arrived at work to discover that the state investigator had come in to my old salon the previous day and TOOK my salon license, leaving behind a highlighted rule that stated the state may charge a $1,000/day fine if I work without my license posted! Frantic calls to the licensing department again confirmed that I had filled out my paperwork correctly, it was the state's mistake, and I should be fine to continue working for a few weeks until my move. But when I asked the woman if that meant that the investigator couldn't fine me for working without a license, she replied that no, of course that’s non-compliance, so she couldn’t tell me it was OK to break the law…but I "should be OK."

I am a rule follower by nature, and also a planner — which meant that I didn’t feel I could work there without a license, and I already had all my licensing in place for the new nail studio anyway. So my husband and I spent a long weekend full of late nights getting everything ready to go for an early opening on March 22. I did get a message late Friday that it would be OK to continue at the old location for another two weeks, but by then I was already off and running at my new studio.

There are still some finishing touches that I will be adding in the months to come, but I am really pleased with the results we achieved in one short week! My biggest challenge was that I basically had one large room (about 500-sq.-ft.), but I need four separate areas: dispensary, reception, pedicure stations, and nail station. By using Ikea shelving units and fabric panels, along with an existing wall with a window in it, we were able to create the four distinct areas. The whole feel of the space is now much cozier.

So far the new studio has received very favorable reviews from my clients, and the first three new retail lines are already showing promising sales! 

— Candice, Panache Nail Studio, Stanwood, Wash.

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