Shear Madness opens in Fleischmanns

By Brian Sweeney
A grand opening was held over the weekend at Shear Madness, a Fleischmanns-based hair salon.
Kathleen Rostad has 27 years’ experience as a licensed cosmetologist and is excited about the opening of her new venture.

“Hairdressing is my passion,” said Kathleen enthusiastically. “I love people coming in and helping them feel good about themselves. That makes me feel good.”

Kathleen began her hairdressing career in Florida where she worked in several salons before opening a business of her own. Her experience in the field included 15 years as a color educator for Redken.

Many offerings
Customers of Shear Madness can choose from a full range of services, including hair cutting and styling, nail treatments and waxing.

“I specialize in hair coloring,” she added.
The Minnesota native moved with her family to Florida at a young age and remained in the Sunshine State until about three years ago. She originally planned to relocate north and open a salon in the metro New York area, before her life took a fortuitous detour.

“I came to the Catskills on a ‘leap-peeping’ trip and I was immediately hooked,” Kathleen recalled. “I said, ‘I love this place, this is where I’m moving.’”
And, she did.

After arriving in the Catskills, Kathleen worked several jobs as she worked to put down some roots in her new home. She offered hairdressing services to a handful of friends, but continued to wait for the proper time to go back into the business full-time.

“I was working as the bar manager at Hanah Mountain Resort until the flood hit and business slowed way down,” Kathleen remembered.

The Village of Fleischmanns was among the hardest hit communities in the area, but Kathleen (who is on the village board) witnessed firsthand the fortitude shown by so many residents in turning the tragedy into opportunity.

“I was inspired by seeing the village slowly returning and improving. It seemed like a perfect time to be a part of that effort,” Kathleen noted.

Shopping for space
So, she began exploring locations for her planned establishment. Startup costs are considerable for such an operation and Kathleen turned to the MARK Project, an Arkville-based local development organization, for assistance.

“I was selected to receive funding from the Middletown Small Business Development Fund and that money made it possible for me to open this shop. I was able to fulfill a vision, with the help of the MARK Project,” Kathleen explained.

The Small Business Development Fund help enabled Kathleen to renovate her rental space at 1033 Main Street and outfit the salon with cutting stations and a state-of-the-art spa/pedicure chair with “human touch” massage.

“The shop is very nice and classy looking,” she proudly pointed out.
Right now, she is busily building a client base, but Kathleen has grand plans for her business.
“I want Shear Madness to be open seven days a week. I want this to be a full functioning salon. I plan to add a tanning booth and I’m hoping to have an esthetician (skin care professional) on staff and also to offer massage therapy.

“Basically, I’d like to turn it into a little day spa,” she said.
She also would like to add staff for hairdressing services.
In addition, Kathleen does hair and makeup for weddings and has already provided services for
several weddings in the area.

“I want to work hand -in- hand with other vendors such as florists and photogaphers to really go after the wedding business which is really taking off in the Catskill area.”
For Kathleen, such tie-ins are a natural extension of her business.
She also encourages others to explore cosmetology, if they think it may be a field of interest.
“It you have talents in that direction, it’s a wonderful profession,” she noted.

Likes what she does
“I love being a hairdresser. I’m all about the style,” Kathleen proudly notes.
Shear Madness caters to women, men and children. In addition to the services offered, products carried at the salon include Joico, Rusk, Bed Head and American Crew. Hours are Tuesday-Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Kathleen will also try to accommodate appointments on other days and times.

As a special “welcome” offer, Kathleen is offering 50 percent off one hair service for all new customers.

She has also established Tuesday as Senior Citizens’ Day, with $5 haircuts and 25 percent off other services for all senior citizens.

For additional information or appointments, please call Shear Madness at 845 254-3016.