Salon to serve both sexes

A combination barber and beauty shop is Midtown's latest retailer.

Published June 4, 2006

Times Staff Writer

ST. PETERSBURG - Lynn Johnson was born in the old Mercy Hospital on 22nd Street S and grew up in a nearby neighborhood.

Johnson and her husband Xavier, also a longtime area resident, realized a dream with Saturday's grand opening of the House of Styles, 3059 18th Ave. S.

The hair salon and barber shop is the newest business to open in Midtown.

It is next to a small strip center that includes a Hungry Howie's pizza restaurant, which opened in 2003, and Bernice Green's bakery and sandwich shop, which relocated there in 2002 after moving from 22nd Street S.

"This area is home for me. I see the potential for change in the area so I wanted to own commercial property and open my new business'' in Midtown, Lynn Johnson said.

She said she and her family spent about a month renovating the building, which previously had contained a salon - owned, ironically, by another Lynn Johnson, who is no relation.

Her brother Anthony Harrell, who owns a construction business, helped with the work, including devising the pumpkin-shaded interior design. He also suggested the tiles that resemble wooden flooring.

Xavier Johnson did the landscaping.

Niece Vikki McGee is the lead stylist. A good friend, Jodi Chelska, designed the business's Web site, www.thehouseofstyles.com.

"It's been a real family project. A lot of love went into it. It's been exciting,'' Lynn Johnson said.

Plans call for the House of Styles to have five stylists and two barbers soon. Two nail technicians and a pedicurist are ideas for the future.

Openings remain for the two barbers and for three stylists, Johnson said.

The stylists will offer a variety of services, including spiral, twists, wraps, pony tails, crimps, hair extensions and coloring. The barbers will cut men's hair and provide old-fashioned shaves.

The Johnsons have three children, Breanna, 15, Xavier Jr., 13, and Jasmine, 10. Lynn Johnson said one reason she wanted to start a business is to "provide my family with a sense of connection to the city other than being just a resident.''

Lynn Johnson is a Web content publisher and has been employed with Cox Target Media for 22 years. Xavier Johnson is a school night maintenance foreman at Woodlawn Elementary School.

The Johnsons will keep their current jobs and manage the salon during their off-hours.

The salon hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Appointments and walk-ins are accepted.