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The magic of craftspeople

I’m excited as I write this: tomorrow I’m off to the hairdressers!

Now having avoided the hairdressers for up to 3 years (and ended up with a 3 foot long pony tail as a result), I got around to getting my hair cut last December, and again in February, and again in March!

It was time for a style change – but part of the delay was my indecision over what style to get.

When you have long hair, there’s the decision about how short to go. Then there’s the decision on what style to have.

I decided to tackle the length first.

In December I had about a foot cut off, taking my hair to between shoulder and elbow length.

In February, another 6 inches hit the floor. My hair was now just below the shoulder.

In the week after the second cut, when I looked in the mirror I would hold my hair up even shorter, thinking “this has got to go!”

And holding my hair up in a bob shape gave me the data I needed: I wanted a bob style.

Style indecision overcome, I was walking past a hair salon that I’d noticed a few weeks before while walking around town after seeing a client. It looked stylish, but not too much. Friendly, comfortable, chic. Outside stood a board announcing that today no appointments were needed.

I walked back. Hesitated. And walked in.

A stylist called Laura was available. She sat me down and talked through what I wanted.

The magic began.

She asked me questions. She handled my hair. She looked me over, getting a sense of me as a person and of my style.

She washed my hair, selected the right products for it, asked me more questions: how do I look after my hair? wash it? dry it? style it?

Then she started the cut. First a rough shape, then a blow dryish, then finished the cut and a final blow dry and set.

I was fascinated. She was totally absorbed in it. She looked, she felt, she combed and cut.

She looked again, measured, asked me more, all the while weaving the new information into the style she was creating for me.

It reminded me of the haircuts I’d had as a child, in good quality salons (thanks Mom!). I’d watch, as fascinated then as I am now, as hair was snipped here, cut there, thinned here, clippered there, and a stylish mop would emerge.

This is the magic of a craft. Someone who’s trained and absorbed in their craft. Someone who knows what’s needed and can create it.

And it’s fascinating to watch.

The art of it. The beauty. The concentration, focus and absorption.

And I get to see it all again, tomorrow!

Over to you: where do you experience this fascination? Or absorption in your craft?

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