Tracy Amyx is bringing a new kind of style to Main Street.
Amyx, 46, now has a barber chair set up at 713 Main St. and is ready to shape and tailor new customers.
Home Town Barber opened Tuesday morning and has already made a name for itself.
“I didn’t know how much business I was going to get, but I knew I’d get enough to make it worth my while,” Amyx said.
Home Town Barber had more than a dozen customers its first day open. Some heard about the business through word of mouth and others saw the new sign posted out front and decided to check what Amyx had to offer.
Born and raised in Eudora, Amyx graduated high school in 1993. Her husband, who is a fourth-generation barber, got her into the idea of cutting hair. She would then attend cosmetology school in order to learn more about her new career path and help her family business.
Amyx previously worked at the family-owned barbershop, Downtown Barber, in Lawrence. There, Amyx learned everything she knew about cutting hair.
“Downtown Barber is very successful, and I wanted to be a part of making it an even better place,” Amyx said.
She worked there for 12 years with her husband, Jay Amyx, and father-in-law, Jon Amyx. After finishing cosmetology school in 2009 and working with her family, she decided this year was time to take a new step and open a shop in her hometown.
“I wanted to be downtown. I wanted to be on Main Street. I grew up down here. This [location] was the old barbershop so the history of this place is amazing,” Amyx said.
Amyx set up her station inside Blue Riot Hair Studio owned by Cassandra Scott. When Amyx asked Scott if she could open up her barber chair in her business, Scott answered with open arms.
“I can’t support all the barber needs in town as well as all the hair services I do, so I think it is a great addition to Eudora,” Scott said.
Scott also hopes Amyx’s inclusion will bring a lot more faces into the building.
Amyx had the thought of opening her new shop in her own building but was concerned about the cost of that undertaking. She saw a bigger opportunity to open within Blue Riot as a way to rekindle her roots of the city.
“Having my own little chair, a spot, not a building, it made me feel more comfortable,” Amyx said.
Amyx only takes walk-ins. She said people often don’t show up to appointments, and she wants to be able to work with a schedule that fits with spending time with her children Rock, Xavier and Breaker. A waitlist could be a possible system if she finds herself with too many heads to handle.
After working in Lawrence for so long, there have been some struggles adjusting to a new setting. The small station space she has can be challenging at times without having as many mirrors as she’s used to. The biggest struggle was finding a new work ethic she can call her own.
Having a walk-in-only business means that Amyx can’t work as fast as she wants to get to all her customers as quickly as she likes. Amyx is carefully taking the lessons learned from her previous job and finding a workflow she is happy with.
“One of the biggest lessons I learned was never judge a book by its cover. When someone walks in, I have no idea who they are or what they are going through. They may look like they crawled out of a dumpster and smell like one, too, but they may give you the biggest tip of the day because you treated them with respect,” Amyx said.
To show her thanks for all the support she’s received thus far, Amyx wants simply to be a reliable barber whom people can depend on.
One of the first of many new customers was Megan Hurtig’s son, Hunter. Hurtig also helped with the opening of Home Town Barber Tuesday morning, supplying Amyx with an opening sign and balloons as well as an abundance of support. Hurtig rents out a space on the corner of Main Street as an office for the company she works for, Spartina 449.
“Our sons are best buds. I wanted to show I was excited for her and proud of her for taking this step and doing something for the community,” Hurtig said.
Hurtig also thinks a new barber in the community is a wonderful addition. Hurtig said many people who travel from Eudora to Lawrence now have a place close by for convenience.
“Anytime you can provide a service for a community that’s needed I think helps keep people in the community and keeps dollars in the community,” Hurtig said.
The new barber will take walk-ins from 8 a.m to 5 p.m.Monday through Wednesday.
To contact Home Town Barber, call Amyx at 785-865-8361.
Reach reporter William Crow at email@example.com.
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