Can a Milwaukee beauty salon cut it in Silver Lake?

Photo courtesy The Establishment

Howie Goldklang and Carly Flynn, who operate a boutique beauty salon in Milwaukee called The Establishment, have opened a second outlet in Silver Lake on Rowena Avenue near West Silver Lake Drive.  The husband-and-wife team converted the former office of a punk rock music label into a six-chair salon complete with original artwork and a spa room for facials and other services.  Flynn has been a stylist and make up artist for 17 years; Goldklang, serves as salon manager.

The Establishment in Silver Lake opened in mid June just as the Department of Water and Power finished a disruptive water line replacement project that tore up and blocked portions of nearby streets. While the new salon avoided all that disruption, Goldgklang and Flynn must still face off against numerous established Silver Lake salons. How is The Establishment going to set itself apart in the crowded Silver Lake beauty scene?

“We just want to be humble, real and authentic with a Midwest/East Coast sense of comfort and simplicity while delivering high-end, high quality services,” Goldklang said.

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  1. Maybe someone can shoot a time lapse of all the salons that have opened recently in SL and EP, practically one on top of another. I don’t know how they all survive.

  2. I certainly wasn’t sad to see the Form Academy behemoth at 3303 Sunset not survive. They came in, painted the building a lovely shade of black dahlia and like crappy neighbors hogged the parking lot, allotting only two spaces to Tarascos next door. The end was nigh when some brainiac there had the unwise idea to foist valet-parking on its patrons.

  3. “The husband-and-wife team converted the former office of a punk rock music label into a six-chair salon”

    Crosscheck Records?

  4. I fear you’re slightly incorrect, Will. After a brief period of allotting two spaces to Tarascos, they didn’t allot a single space. I was at Tarascos once and an employee of the salon walked in to berate a middle-aged woman who was waiting for her taco order, seethingly telling her she couldn’t park in the lot. The lot was, of course, empty except for Tarascos customers.

  5. Silver Lake , The new epicenter of banality?

  6. Thanks for the correction Jimbob. And as an update, apparently Form Academy is still very much alive, but not in the westside where I’d wager they’d feel right at home, but in Echo Park instead where if they they might be pissing off new neighboring establishments.

  7. One of the best things about Silver Lake is that no one here is originally from Silver Lake.
    Different points of view are always a very good thing.

    I hope they do well. Cheers!

  8. Jimbob and Will Cambell –
    I too got chased out of that (completely empty) lot once by the hair Nazis
    Trying to park in front was next to non existent and eventually my attitude was ‘if there’s no spot in front, fuggit, let’s go to Delta (or Machos etc etc).’
    It’s sad but eventually I stopped going to Tarascos altogether because of that ridiculous parking situation.

  9. Aldo Thee Apache

    Speaking of bad salon ethics, it’s been long known amongst the Silverlake merchants that Modem salon killed the breakfast spot next door to them (they own the building) by quadrupling their rent over night to put them out of business. Done so that their friends, LAMILL coffee, wouldn’t have any competition when they opened.

    But as far as there being one salon on top of each other, I’ve seen this exact same phenomena happen in San Francisco. The lower Haight almost overnight became the hair salon ghetto. I’d be curious to know the psychology of why this happens. When bars, restaurants and retail spots congregate on one area it makes sense; I go to eat, then for a drink after or I’m going to shop for various kinds of clothes.
    Getting your hair cut/styled is a one stop situation, so why the groupings?

  10. @Aldo – hi, my wife and I are the co-owners of The Establishment and re: salons and groupings……each salon has different products and service offerings so when clusters arrive, it is cool for clients to have a choice. Aveda? Redken? Rock n roll like Rudy’s or quiet, serene spa or somewhere between (like us). Sometimes people roll up to an area and do nails at 9am, walk down the block hair/wax/skin care services at a neighboring, complimentary location. That’s my guess. But restaurant, shopping, salon, bars: no matter how ya slice it – keep it real, keep it small biz local! xo, Howie

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