Haircuts are fucking important. When I was seven I cut gum out of my hair and thus created a cowlick that has stayed with me until this day. In college, in an attempt to reinvent myself, I had a hairstylist cut seven inches off my locks and proceeded to cry my eyes out in her chair. I spent the following months with my hair pulled back into a tiny ponytail nub.
Haircuts are a paramount form of self expression; a bad cut can leave you insecure while a great one can leave you feeling like a rockstar. So, if you are getting the itch to chop your locks and feel like a goddess, I’ll let you in on a little secret… Kristen Shaw’s Cabin in Venice Beach is life changing.
I recently had the opportunity to check out the cozy studio and let’s just say, my PTSD from my previous hair experiences has been fully squashed. Tucked away on Abbot Kinney, Cabin is the salon you’ve always dreamt of — like getting your hair done by your BFF in the comfort of your own home.
I nearly missed it until I caught sight of the neon sign on the side of a furniture store. This easy-to-miss side door will lead you through a garden that leads you inside Kristen’s heavenly digs.
Not your typical salon, her goal was to create a space that would make her clients feel at ease. Lining the walls are rare books from her personal collection, set beside her own illustrations that she’s turned into a greeting card line which she also sells in the shop called Cabin Paper (which are cute AF, might I add).
I ask Kristen what inspired her to start Cabin.
She muses, “Cabin is inspired by my love for home, family, creating spaces and beauty. I’ve spent most of the last 10 years traveling the world doing hair in other people’s homes, so when it came time to open up my own place, I knew I had to bring you into mine. The name “Cabin” came from when I was 11, drawing endless sketches of the cabin I wanted my parents to build for us. Most of my childhood was spent camping and being active out in nature, so the world of natural beauty in and out of the home and workplace feel very much at home to me.”
With just two chairs, Kristen provides an intimate experience, and she wants to keep it that way.
She explains, “I want people to feel like they are safe and they can be curious and experimental with themselves. I want people to feel inspired because everything I keep in this space is something that inspires me.”
After two previous spots, one in downtown and one on Rose Avenue, Cabin’s Venice bungalow is here to stay. She calls it an extension of herself, a little slice of love and wit to keep her going throughout the day… and even shares that she has dreams of creating more for the “Cabin” brand in the future (possibly a hotel!).
So if you are in Venice and looking for that hair chop, run, don’t walk to Cabin. I’m still vibing off my cut and it’s been weeks. No more tiny ponytail nubs for me.