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New salon opens off the beaten path'

By Staff
NEW SALON Jay Vining, left, business manager; Neva Rush, salon coordinator; and Dell Pinter, hairdresser, work at J Dell's a new hair salon at 2571 Ninth St. Vining and Pinter are business partners in J Dell's. PHOTO BY LYNETTE WILSON / THE MERIDIAN STAR
By Lynette Wilson / staff writer
August 25, 2002
Business partners Jay Vining and Dell Pinter struggled to find the perfect place to open a salon in Meridian, looking at every available commercial space on the market.
But is was a rundown, redbrick house at 2517 Ninth St., a former dentist's office 12 blocks from Vining's childhood home, that caught their eye.
Vining said he and Pinter drove by the property at 26th Avenue and Ninth Street northwest of downtown a dozen times before stopping to look.
When they did, Vining said, "it was a cold, dark February day. The electricity in the house was turned off and heavy, metal blinds kept the light out. Five days later we'd bought the house."
They said it was the home's solid foundation and interior and exterior architectural detail the kind of detail you don't find in strip malls and newer homes that sold them.
Then they went to work.
They spent five months gutting, stripping, sanding, painting, refurbishing and searching flea markets for the perfect fixtures all just to get everything right.
The men did 90 percent of the work themselves even though neither had ever worked construction before. They contracted the plumbing and electrical work.
Last Tuesday, J Dell's opened for business, and a different kind of salon was born in Meridian. Pinter said he likes to get to know the person's habits, personality and lifestyle before he cuts their hair.
Said Pinter: "I want you to look the best you can with the amount of effort you are going to put in. There's a lot to learn and a lot to invest. It's different approach to hair care."
Pinter said hairdressing is a profession and that he wants his clients to get used to the idea that hairdressers stand behind their work like any other professional.
It's more about getting to know the person, what hairstyles they can carry off and teaching them about hair care, Pinter said.
About the salon's location, Pinter said: "If you're going to run a prestigious salon, you've got to be off the beaten path."