A note from SUE EGAN
I joined Vidal Sassoon in 1972 and started my training at the Sloane Street salon. Philip Rogers was manager, David Marshall was under manager and Henry Abel was Art Director. Stylists Nigel Silas, Pat Lewis, May Ho, Franco Scarpa, Ian Benson, Heinz Shumi, Brian and Peggy, later to marry Flint Whincop. Annie Humphries head of tinting and Christian also Patsy in perming. Mrs O’Keefe was our wonderful cloakroom lady, there all hours. What a super_ star salon to start my training!! Juniors Keith Egan, later to become my husband, Alisoun Powell, Ricky Israel, Stephen and Sally, later to marry Henry Abel. We all worked long and hard with a very healthy and competitive edge. Always trying to do the best blow-dries and keeping our busy stylists on time. As a new junior you would be assigned to a new stylist, then progressing to be the Art Director’s junior. This would involve going on photo shoots on location or to Vogue House which was amazing.
Top models like ‘Firefly would come to get their hair coloured and cut. The salon had a real buzz.
We worked a five and a half day week, finishing about 1.30 on Saturdays. David would drive off in his blue E Type Jaguar and Nigel in his red Austin Healy, something for us to aspire to.
Once I started going out with Keith I was moved to Grosvenor House. Sean Jones was manager and Trevor Sorbie was art director. They both moved when the salon at South Molton Street opened. Then Darryl Benson took over as art Director. Other stylists were Lionel Parisi, the up and coming Nick Foster Brown and my stylist Gino Mangifesti.
It was during my time at Grosvenor House in the early 1970's that we had the famous power cuts with generators and lights strung across the salon. No blow-dries and this really developed the finger drying and scrunch drying.
I progressed to staff training at Davies Mews with Caroline Hayes and Kevin was manager. Ian ran the kitchen , from a minute cupboard in reception, when he was n’t teaching singing lesson to the famous.
When I passed my final test I became a teacher. I really enjoyed my six years teaching within the schools, at Davies mews, Queen Street and Knightsbridge. The schools were such an important part of the company teaching our technique and philosophy would wide. Other teachers were Maryanne, Lorna, Valerie, Lucretia, Jan and Andy Townsend, Jayne Pearce, Terry Coleman, Julie Fletcher, Christopher Robin and Shelly Kenton. Many staff went to teach in America as there were opportunities as the company opened more schools.
In my last couple of years we started a very successful ‘Forty Week Course’ which I helped to create with Alisoun Powell. Teaching students ,totally from scratch ,into very able and proficient stylists.
When I left Sassoon's in 1980 Keith and I opened our own salon in Wimbledon Village, South West London, Called ‘Keith Egan Hair’. Then in 1985 a second salon ‘Section’ in Walton Street Knightsbridge. Employing great talent, Michael Stannard, Nick Slingsby, Alex Grassby and Trevor Hall.
I moved to Somerset in the West Country in 1990 and worked in Sherborne for eleven years. In 2003 I started to work for myself and cutting back on the hours of standing, but still enjoying what I do and a group of wonderful and loyal clients.