Meet the team of Arcadia, the salon bringing style + color to Avondale

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The kind of team that makes every day a good hair day. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

Arcadia Salon is serving up all the style and good vibes in Avondale. From its dreamy salon interior to the stylists behind the chairs, Arcadia is doing something right. Get a look inside, and get to know the team making all the magic.

Welcome to Arcadia, the salon bringing all the good vibes to Avondale 🌿

Located in the heart of Avondale, Arcadia Salon is truly a magical spot. The sleek exterior is eye-catching and stepping inside is like a dream. With plants hanging in every corner and a mid-century modern design feel—the space is warm and open, welcoming each guest with cozy accents and lighting.

Fittingly, the word Arcadia is Greek for a happy, serene place—which the salon definitely achieves. And although I could go on about the stunning design and decor, it’s the people working inside that make it so magical.

Meet the team making the magic happen ✨

Christie White | Founder + Owner

Christie J. White, founder + owner of Arcadia Salon. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

A native of Anniston, AL, Christie J. White, always knew she’d return to Birmingham. After working in independent music stores, she got her start in the salon industry as a manager at Van Michael Salon in Atlanta over two decades ago.

Fast forward to 2018, when she reconnected with an old friend—Theo Pettway—for a haircut on vacation. She’d never thought of opening her own salon until sitting in his chair. After a few meetings with Theo, Christie and her husband Bill set out to create Arcadia.  They chose every element together and still do. 

Tell me a bit about how Arcadia originated. What inspired the name and feel?

After deciding to open the salon we were struggling with the name. My husband asked me what I was searching for more than anything and I said “happiness.”  A Google search later he suggested Arcadia—the Greek word for a happy, serene place. I knew that was it instantly.

The decor is inspired by Mid-Century Modern design and of the building itself, which I fell in love with. Plants are a big part of our culture. Taking care of them, having plant pop-ups with House Plant Collective, everyone sharing new plant acquisitions.  

You’ve been in the salon industry for over two decades. How have you seen this industry evolve as a whole? And what does Arcadia Salon bring that’s unique?

The old school way of doing hair—showing up every day just to do hair then go home—is a thing of the past. You gotta bring it! The industry has changed more with the evolution of social media than ever before. Before Instagram, you relied on word of mouth. Now you can actually SEE talent before booking and choose who’s best for you.

Arcadia’s unique approach is that we place a huge emphasis on education as well as supporting one another. If someone is struggling with a cut, color, social media, we help them and assist in real time. We are a team, a true team, that works well together. I’ve never, ever, worked with such a talented group of people who constantly work to get better, do better. Clients see that, they feel it and experience the vibe during their visit. 

And I’ll add: if we aren’t having fun we’re doing it wrong.

When you’re not working at the salon, where would someone find you around Birmingham?

So many places! Favorites are: Cayo Coco, Crestwood Coffee, Urban Suburban Antiques, Tropicaleo and a neighborhood favorite El Cazador Restaurant in Irondale.  It’s family-owned and operated and they are such good people. Supporting local is a big one with my husband and me.  

Mary Fulton | Stylist, Color Educator + Stylist Social Media Director

Mary Fulton, stylist, color educator + stylist social media director at Arcadia Salon. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

If you spot someone in leopard print at Arcadia Salon, it’s probably Mary. A Birmingham native and graduate of Aveda Institute Birmingham, Mary got her start styling hair for proms and weddings.

Now, she’s an integral part of the Arcadia team as a Stylist/Color Educator and the Stylist Social Media Director—using creativity and knowledge to create color stories with hair as the canvas.

Where do you look for inspiration as a stylist?

I love to look at other stylists’ work on Instagram. I pick out an aspect that I like and want to incorporate and figure out how they achieved that look. You can always learn something from your peers. 

How would you describe the Arcadia team? What sets you all apart from other salons and stylists in Birmingham?

The Arcadia Team is a very close-knit family. We help each other, from cleaning, to application, to education. It truly makes a difference in your life to have a team that is supportive. Our clients notice this connection too! 

If you could use three words to sum up your personal style, what would they be?

Casual, low maintenance + bohemian

As a stylist, how do you incorporate your own style with your clients?

My life is very busy and constant, so my personal style is easy to keep up with. My clients appreciate that I incorporate that same easy-going, low maintenance style into their hair because we all have busy lives.

If you’re not working at Arcadia, where would someone find you around Birmingham?

At any House Plant Collective pop up or at home. Self-care is important to me so my happy place is my home and relaxing with my family. And I love plants!

Theo Pettway | Stylist + Education Director 

Theo Pettway, stylist + education director at Arcadia Salon. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

From Gees Bend, AL, artistic ability runs in Theo’s family. As a graduate of Aveda Institute Birmingham and a Davines Educator, Theo has about 12 years of styling experience under his belt.

He’s been with Arcadia from the beginning and gets to pursue his two true passions—working with hair and education—daily. P.S. If you need a good cut or want to go red, Theo is your guy.

Where do you look for inspiration as a stylist?

My students and co-workers, they continue to challenge me and inspire me. I’m so lucky.

How would you describe the Arcadia team? What sets you all apart from other salons and stylists in Birmingham?

Special is the word I use to describe our team. We are a teaching salon where everyone takes part in education, we literally learn new things daily. 

If you could use three words to sum up your personal style, what would they be?

Classic, current + casual

As a stylist, how do you incorporate your own style with your clients?

I like to adapt to the needs of my clients based on their lifestyle and always considering their personal style.  

If you’re not working at Arcadia, where would someone find you around Birmingham?

You will find me at Botanica Downtown buying all the plants!

Kista Hamilton | Stylist

Kista Hamilton, stylist at Arcadia Salon. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

A Birmingham native, Disney fanatic and travel junkie, you’ll likely never run out of topics to chat about when sitting in Kista’s chair. And that’s the best part of being a stylist in her opinion—getting to know all kinds of people and helping them become the best version of themselves.

With 20 years in the business, various classes and advanced training in cutting, coloring + styling techniques, Kista is no stranger to the salon industry. Her specialties include highlights, natural color and short haircuts.

Masks on + shampoo ready. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

Where do you look for inspiration as a stylist?

I love to scroll Instagram, but watching my coworkers is the best inspiration.

How would you describe the Arcadia team? What sets you all apart from other salons and stylists in Birmingham?

We have every kind of stylist for every kind of client. We are a diverse group that is incredibly passionate about our profession and about our Salon. And we genuinely like each other and frequently collaborate so each guest gets a great experience. 

If you could use three words to sum up your personal style, what would they be?

Grown up punk!

As a stylist, how do you incorporate your own style with your clients?

I love giving people classic, wearable styles with a touch of edge.

If you’re not working at Arcadia, where would someone find you around Birmingham?

You can find me hanging at Sanctum Tattoos (my husband’s shop) or scuba diving in our local quarries with my son.

Lis Barton | Stylist

Lis Barton, stylist at Arcadia Salon. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

Lis (pronounced Liz) is all about making her clients feel good about themselves and realizing how amazing they are simply through an edgy cut or new color.

Growing up in Calera, she always had a love for Birmingham. And after taking a leap of faith and enrolling in cosmetology school at Aveda Institute Birmingham after college, Lis finally found a way to help others feel confident through the creative process of changing their hair. Her specialties include cutting, balayage, fashion colors and full colors.

Where do you look for inspiration as a stylist?

I find inspiration in my surroundings, especially nature. My favorite thing is to pick out colors/color schemes to use as inspiration for future projects.

How would you describe the Arcadia team? What sets you all apart from other salons and stylists in Birmingham?

The one word I would describe us as is a family. I have only been part of the Arcadia team since February, but I feel like I have known them for years. Within that time frame, they have helped me grow as an artist and a stylist. I think what sets us apart is that we go out of our way to make sure all of us have everything we need to create the best hair they can.

If you could use three words to sum up your personal style, what would they be?

Boho, a splash of alternative + relaxed 

As a stylist, how do you incorporate your own style with your clients?

The one thing that I try to incorporate from my personal style/lifestyle is to create a look that is going to manage and match their lifestyle. Something that looks effortless but also packs a punch.

If you’re not working at Arcadia, where would someone find you around Birmingham?

I’m usually out in nature with friends or hanging out at TrimTab.  

Jaisy Ray | Stylist

Jaisy Ray, stylist at Arcadia Salon. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

With a passion for education, Jaisy is intentional about developing her skills and perfecting her craft. Originally from Paducah, KY, she apprenticed a master stylist in Kentucky for 2 years before becoming a stylist.

When it comes to her clients, communication is key. Jaisy believes each guest brings value to her chair and she looks to them for inspiration. Her specialties? Balayage, blonding + vivids.

Where do you look for inspiration as a stylist?

I like to look at Pinterest & other social media platforms as a means of direction only, but I never try replicating exactly what I see. 

How would you describe the Arcadia team? What sets you all apart from other salons and stylists in Birmingham?

Teamwork. Growing up, I heard a lot in dance classes, “You’re only as strong as your weakest link.” That’s especially true in a Salon atmosphere. Every person counts. Not many salons can say they have such strong stylists all with amazing people skills, great artistic abilities and sensitivity to others in need.

It’s really encouraging whenever I see a stylist running behind—another stylist will step in to sweep, tone, sanitize and literally help in every way possible to set the stylist in need up for success for their next guest.

If you could use three words to sum up your personal style, what would they be?

Hard to say in 3 words but I love the desert, fashionable and casual

As a stylist, how do you incorporate your own style with your clients?

I love seeing each of my clients have a look they feel most beautiful in and I always try to deliver. That’s my style: being true to yourself and expressing that through your aesthetic.  

If you’re not working at Arcadia, where would someone find you around Birmingham?

Seeds Coffee in Homewood or Cookie Dough Magic!

Ashley Blankenship | Intern Stylist

Ashley Blankenship, intern stylist at Arcadia Salon. Photo via Hannah Chambley for Bham Now

Ashley is the latest addition to the Arcadia team. After working in retail for 8 years, she decided to put her creative energy into hair and enrolled in Paul Mitchell the School Birmingham to pursue cosmetology.

She’s a Birmingham native who loves to help people feel good through their hair. When it comes to techniques and specialties, Ashley loves coloring hair and creating the perfect curls.

Where do you look for inspiration as a stylist?

I love to explore social media and see what stylists in other countries are doing and their different techniques.

How would you describe the Arcadia team? What sets you all apart from other salons and stylists in Birmingham?

I’m new with Arcadia but super excited to be a part of this salon. Everyone is super positive and friendly. 

The most serene interior. Photo via Matthew Niblett for Bham Now

If you could use three words to sum up your personal style, what would they be?

Fun, comfy, + a little adventurous

As a stylist, how do you incorporate your own style with your clients?

I always want clients to feel comfortable with their hairstyles but also how to have fun and work with what you got. I love figuring out what my clients can try that’s new. 

If you’re not working at Arcadia, where would someone find you around Birmingham?

Queens Park, Le Fresca + Golden Age Wine

Book your appointment + say goodbye to bad hair days đź‘‹

Head to their website to book your next appointment online, or give them a call or shoot them a text at (205) 777-5534. They’ll set you up with a stylist, or you can request the stylist you prefer. Before you book, make sure to read through their updated safety guidelines.

  • Address: 400 41st Street S, Suite 100 | Birmingham, AL 35222
  • Hours: Tues-Thurs 10AM-7PM | Fri 10AM-5PM | Sat 9AM-3PM | Closed Sun + Mon

P.S. Keep an eye on our Instagram for a sweet giveaway coming this week. We’ll be partnering with Arcadia to give away FREE Aveda Hair Products for 1 year. đź‘Ź 🎉

And make sure to follow Arcadia Salon on Instagram @arcadiabham for updates on plant popups, their favorite products and allll the hair inspo.

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  • Most likely Instagrammin’ the Birmingham skyline, behind the camera shooting photos or writing stories (with too many puns) for Bham Now.