alon International is one of the UK hair industry’s most anticipated shows of the year. It’s a 3-day convention where hairdressers come together to present their skills, new technologies and current collections. SWH Art Team were invited once again to take the stage to demo our latest looks.
Spot The Hairdresser!
If you’re in London on any of the three days of Salon International, you might just notice an increased flamboyance, grooming and chatter from the tube-goers. Every October, thousands of hairdressers from all over the world descend on the ExCel Centre to network, inspire and share ideas. It’s Salon International time!
In 2017, our SWH Art Team presented a sneak preview of our New England collection, fresh from the studio, on the Fellowship Stage. And on the Men’s Hair Stage we presented two male looks on two female models, bringing our gender-free ethos into the spotlight.
1 Team, 2 Stages, 3 Days
Simon, Lora and Dan took to the capital as SWH Art Team for our busiest Salon International yet. Between them, they would create no fewer than ten looks on four models over the weekend.
We kicked off day one with two 20-minute presentations on the KMS and Goldwell Stage. Our models were SWH favourites and Brighton girls, Pollie, Tess and Zara, with looks inspired by the street styles and subcultures of our city. Simon opened the presentation with a discussion of the SWH brand ethos and strapline, style-music-fashion.
SWH Art Team’s focus has been on shape, texture and line. For the first presentation, Simon, Dan and Lora all used the models own hair with the addition of hair wefts built into the hair to add body and length. Traditional crafts inspired the techniques used to manipulate the hair.
For Pollie’s look, Simon contrasted different textures and used a rick-racking technique to build volume and lightness into the hair. He wove the front of the hair in a figure of eight around a U-pin to create a tight curl . Once set, he brushed it out to create a frizzy texture. The roots and mid-lengths of the remaining hair was combed flat and sleek, with the ends frizzed and tousled.
Lora recreated the winning look on her model Zara, that earned her a place in the Fellowship F.A.M.E. Team finals only a month earlier. Chunky scalp braiding contrasted with a bold, close undercut and topped with hand-made hair pom-poms made from green and black hair strands bound together.
Dan crimped, pinned and braided hair weft into Tess’s own hair to create a hair-up with a street finish. Black, honey and ash blonde wefts were placed in thick sections to colour block the style.
The second look of the show showed the art of making, cutting and styling wigs, a particular skill of SWH Art Team. They used a combination of ready-made wigs which were cut into style and wigs made by the team in-salon from individual hair weft packed tightly and sewn or glued into place, mimicking the natural growth patterns of hair.
Before the wigs can be placed, the hair is wig-wrapped to reduce bulk and create an even base for the wig to be anchored to with pins – an art in itself.
Simon’s wig was razor-cut once in place, to blend with Pollie’s own hair and create a 70’s-inspired look. He used KMS spray colour to add depth and highlights to the hair, accentuating the texture and shape and framing the face.
Zara’s curls were flattened under a wig-cap beneath her sleek black wig. She has a really versatile look so Lora created a 90’s-esque choppy long bob, styled tousled or straight. She used the spray colour to add panels and highlights of colour for instant interest.
And in a demonstration of how skilled wig-wrapping can disguise even the longest of hair, Dan wrapped Tess’ near-waist-length hair to form a neat and flat base, with a wig-cap to hold the pins and hair in place. He secured two extra large foam hair buns to build height and positioned a sleek brunette wig and weft to create a smooth 50’s-styled outline. To finish, Dan cut in a long, seeping fringe and long layers that kicked out at the shoulders – think an exaggerated Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast At Tiffany’s.
The Fellowship Stage
As well as showing off their styling on the KMS and Goldwell Stage on Saturday and Sunday, Simon and Lora had guest spots on the Fellowship Stage on Monday. The Fellowship Stage at Salon International is one of the largest and most popular, with new and established talent rubbing shoulders to show what they can do.
Simon was interviewed for the Fellowship Live Lounge, to give an insight into his 30-plus years of experience working both in-salon in session for the music and fashion industries. He talked about his favourite moments, the challenges of the two different environments and the SWH salon and brand.
Lora was competing in the final of the F.A.M.E. Team competition for 2018. The competition awards four young, up-and-coming hairdressers from across the UK, the chance to spend a year working across the globe on some of the most prestigious stages. The lucky winners receive education and presentation training with a view to them being stars of the future. They are the ones to watch!
To learn how Lora got on in the competition and see her final looks, as well as learning about her journey so far, check out our blogpost, F.A.M.E.