Christmas 2010 brought the best of times along with the most devastating of events for Sarah Badurek, owner of 'b. Salon' in Detroit Lakes, and her husband, Aron.
It was the first Christmas season for their oldest daughter, Reagan. "She was the most important part of our lives," Sarah Badurek said with a smile.
But the week before Christmas, the holiday season lost its glow. During a festive celebration, they received a phone call telling them that Sarah's business was burning down.
Sarah and Aron rushed to the scene of the inferno, where they were met by Jay Schurman, who owned the building.
"It was complete devastation," Sarah recalled. "The roof had collapsed. Everything was gone!" When the blaze burned out, she envisioned the bleak future of 'b. Salon' lost amid the ashes.
In order to accommodate her clients, Badurek rented a stylist chair at a local establishment in Detroit Lakes.
What she hadn't expected was a second chance to have her own salon.
The idea was suggested by Schurman who had bought a building across the street from Rossman Elementary School. "It was more space than Jay needed for his photography studio," Badurek explained, "So he asked me if I would want to lease part of the building for my salon. Since we'd worked well together in the past, I accepted his offer."
Badurek began envisioning an entirely new salon, a fresh start that would lift her career literally up from ashes.
"But the more I listened to what people said, the more I realized that 'b Salon' had gained a loyal following." She subsequently abandoned her former view in favor of a "re-opening."
The new 'b. Salon' began to take shape about a year ago. Even then, Badurek's hope for the future of her business soared. "The space has wide open windows that bring in so much natural lighting," she pointed out, "and it's so well located in the heart of the town."
With these essentials in place, Sarah began to work on the "feel" of her new salon. "If people take an hour out of the day to come to my salon, I want them come to a welcoming place where they feel comfortable," she said.
"The rapport of trust with a client is the most important thing," she added. "It establishes the comfort level."
Badurek's dedication to the field is steep in a 12-year career that began in Minneapolis. After graduating from cosmetology school, she pursued advanced training through Aveda at the Sanctuary Salonspa in Minneapolis and at the Aveda Advanced Academy in New York City.
She worked in a salon in Minneapolis for three years, and later relocated to Gainesville, Fla., where she worked for an additional three years.
Sarah and her husband Aron moved to Detroit Lakes, where they have lived for six years.
While living in northwestern Minnesota, Badurek has kept an eye on high-end hair design trends by attending shows in New York City and in Orlando, Fla.
"I feel it's my job to stay on top of trends so I can offer my clients the best possible look," she said. "That's what makes my profession challenging and fun . . . meeting wonderful people and hopefully contributing to their quality of life."
Badurek's salon is designed to house three additional operators. One of these chairs is filled by Kelsey Hoff; the two other chairs are currently vacant.
Hoff started her career over three years ago at an Aveda salon and spa in Perham and moved to Detroit Lakes in 2011, where she rented a chair at another establishment before coming over to b. Salon in September.