Mandy Zelinka // The Zelinka Agency
Building Community Through Female Empowerment
Well, 77 Salon, that is.
When my business partner and I took over Aphrodite Salon (est. 1998) in Portland’s Pearl District in 2004 we first decided that in order to attract new stylists and give the space a fresh start a new name and branding was in order. Then we decided the salon needed a name that was easy to pronounce and spell. We chose 77.
Both of us were born that year. I came up with it while drinking a beer at a Mexican restaurant. I didn’t put a lot of thought into it – it just popped into my head. There was plenty of other things to think about and it seemed to do the job. You can’t get too judgy over the use of numbers as a name, I thought. I have always been overly critical of salon names. That probably won’t ever end.
The new branding and name worked. We ended up attracting a ridiculously talented group of individuals – five of whom went on to open their own successful salons. It was sad to watch them go, and I am still in awe of the electricity that salon had. So many talented artists in one space. We left 77 in capable hands of another talented stylist who went on to win a few more awards for the salon and lead the hair designers at the prestigious Portland Fashion Week. I moved on to do hair down the street and simultaneously become the digital marketing manager for KEVIN.MURPHY. I gotta say, though, you just never forget your first.
^I created that. I really did – makes me feel like I created the NIKE swoosh or something.