BY JUSTIN CORD HAYES
Some people get not-so-great news and give up or complain or do any number of similar things that don’t help the situation. But not Denise Moseley, hairstylist for 40 years this October, and Farrago owner for the last four years.
The word “farrago” means “a widely diverse mixture,” and the enterprise lives up to its name. For those not familiar, Farrago is a hair salon/ nail salon/ art gallery/ generous helping of this and that which Moseley opened in 2013 with particular help from friend and logistical wizard, Kim Gleason. Gleason now focuses her attention on selling cool stuff at Design Archives in downtown Winston-Salem.
“Farrago grew quickly and started out with a bang, but we’ve since minimized the number of our artists some and have downsized a bit,” Moseley says. “I’m old enough to know that the seemingly hard changes that are forced on us always turn out to be the best things.”
Some time ago, developers began to express an interest in buying up the land that includes Farrago in order to develop a shopping center, and those plans were approved recently. Moseley knows many would “freak out” in such a situation, but she is a survivor and thriver, not a shrinking violet.
Moseley briefly considered staying in the Stratford Road area and mastering social media in order to promote Farrago, but she is a realist.
“I decided I don’t want to do social media. I want to return home.”
“Home” is Lewisville, where Moseley first opened a salon while still in her teens. She plans to mark the re-opening with a small July 4th party, followed this fall by a large shindig in October to mark her 40 years as an entrepreneur and stylist extraordinaire.
Her new space on Shallowford Road evokes many memories for Moseley. When she opened her small salon in 1977, the soon-to-be location of Farrago was a bank that had been a hardware store. The building still contains a Masonic Temple. Until recently, it was the home of Accessorize This. One thing that characterizes that location—and that makes it particularly attractive to Moseley—is that it’s a contrast to Farrago’s current location.
“When I stand in the space and look out the windows, I feel the laid back, quiet comfort of the small town of Lewisville, a completely different feeling from that of Stratford Road,” she says. “There is an automatic peacefulness that I’m looking for right now.”
For Moseley, that’s what a styling salon should be: a place for client friends to relax and unwind. To that end, Sandy Dunlap will coordinate Farrago’s stripped-down list of artists, as well as make sure customers are relaxing with bottled water or a favorite libation. Mandy Walker-Saxon will offer tension-easing massages. Moseley, Amanda Wilson, and Alicia Frizzell will comprise the Triad’s best hair styling and coloring team.
The following are among the artists who will continue to call Farrago home:
- Mary Lin Gmach makes eye-catching, reasonably priced pottery.
- B. Tatum crafts one-of-a-kind, hard-to-categorize, but dang-you’ll-love-them sculptures.
- Twisted Friends offers tie-dye clothing to dye—oops, die—for.
- Jeannie Archer Renken will continue to offer Farrago customers a chance to purchase small paintings and card creations.
- Joni Parks crafts beautiful stained glass.
Moseley says she would also like to continue to have occasional events at Farrago’s new location because these get-togethers offer a chance to catch up with old friends, but she would love for “calm” to be Farrago’s mantra for all client friends, artists, and employees.
“It feels like everyone’s life is so heavy right now, and they’ve got more going on than they can handle. I somehow would like to create a space where you really take it down several notches when you walk in and just breathe and laugh and reflect on simpler times.”
With the visionary Moseley at the helm, one has little reason to doubt that Farrago will be a colorful, creative, rejuvenating oasis in the midst of this busy world.