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‘Welcome to my happy place’

Local stylist runs hair salon in private shop out of her own home

Eva Walling has been doing hair since she was 16, and said she doesn’t plan on quitting anytime soon.

Foregoing college because she didn’t feel like she was the right kind of material, Walling landed in beauty school after a friend introduced her to a place her mother owned.

“My dad was a doctor and my mother was a nurse,” Walling said. “They wanted me to go to college, but I did not feel like I could go. I decided to go to beauty school and when I got into it I loved it. I have been in it for many years, but I feel like it was yesterday, and I still go to my training every year.”

Running her business in a salon out of her own home, Walling said she is busier now than she was more than eight years ago when she owned her own hair salon in Lexington.

“I owned a salon in Lexington for 25 years and had girls who rented booths from me up there,” Walling said. “Hiring people, it was really hard to get good quality people. I talked to the state board who said, ‘Why don’t you do it out of your home?’ Because in Jessamine County you can. All my customers came, and I ended up being busier now than I was there.”

Having no set hours, all clients are by appointment only. Walling’s shop offers a variety of services out of the convenience and privacy of her own home which include haircuts, $15-25; root color, $55 and up including blow dry and deep condition; foils, $75 and perms starting at $85.

“My customers love the privacy of it because it is a one-on-one thing in here,” Walling said. “I try to just cater to one person at a time and they love it. I do a lot of people that are doctors, attorneys and some politicians. They like the privacy of it.”

Walling is in her element in her shop and says a sign one of her customers brought her sums it all up as it reads, “Welcome to my happy place.”

“I am truly in my element when I am in this room,” Walling said. “All my customers become my friends over time doing their hair. A lot of my clients tell me as they are walking out the door, ‘love you Eva,’ because we develop this friendship and I would do anything for my clients. When they are in need and when they call, I go.”

Walling tries to make each customer feel comfortable and at home when they visit her salon, where Walling offers her clients coffee, tea and water.

“I do a lot of color. Color is my main thing,” Walling said. “I understand it. A lot of hairdressers do not understand it. I (also) try and keep my salon very clean. The state board said I have the cleanest salon in the county.”

Walling said growing up her father told her to get a hobby she would never want to quit because it would not be a hobby to her. All these years later, Walling is looking forward to new clients and said she is just now getting started.

“Every morning when I wake up I say my prayers before I ever get out of bed. I say, ‘Dear Lord, let me do my best job from my first client to my last client,’ and He has always kept me strong and I have been able to do that. So, I thank the Lord for every client I have and every good job that I do.”

To contact Valentina Salon call 859-552-5100 or 859-224-3636.