Local stylist is bound for Vegas

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 3, 2002

Katrina Stallworth has always loved cutting hair, but she never realized it would one day pay her way to Las Vegas.

Stallworth, 24, of Pineapple, Ala., said she grew up cutting her sisters' hair. She said it was something she always enjoyed to do.

"Ever since

I was little I just used to whack on somebody's hair," Stallworth said. "My sisters would just let me pick up a pair of scissors and cut their hair. I didn't have any experience."

Katrina, Kenneth and their 3-year-old daughter Shaquesha currently reside in Pineapple, but Katrina commutes to Andalusia to cut hair in the J.C. Penney Styling Salon.

Stallworth said no comparison can be made between Andalusia and Pineapple, because Andalusia has so much more commerce to offer.

"There is no comparison," she said. "Andalusia is bigger than Pineapple. Pineapple is just filled with big, beautiful houses and sidewalks -- just beautiful things. We have one county store, a post office and a restaurant. Andalusia has grocery stores, restaurants and convenience stores. I drive back and forth between Pineapple and Andalusia. It takes me an hour to get here, but it is worth it."

Stallworth said he passion for styling hair comes from a desire to take something rough and change it into something beautiful

"I just like to cut. I like to design and I love updos," Stallworth said. "I like to take long hair and put it up off the shoulders and the neck for parties and weddings. I like to take something dull and make it shiny."

Stallworth said she attended Reed State Technical College in Evergreen for two years to increase her knowledge of styling hair before beginning her career as a hair stylist.

According to Stallworth, July 14 will mark her six month anniversary at the styling salon, but she has been traveling close to Andalusia for quite some time.

"My husband started working for Rhett Butler trucking and I have been coming to River Falls," Stallworth said, adding that she traveled to River Falls when her husband's truck was serviced.

Stallworth said it took a bit of time to adjust to using clippers to cut men's hair, but she eventually found her way with time.

"When I first got here I did not want to cut any man's hair because I did not want to use the clippers," Stallworth said. "I used the scissors, but I would never use the clippers. I sat there and watched everyone else cut. They would just take the clippers and scoop the hair like you scoop ice cream. I thought to myself I could do that. From there on I have been doing it. I just make sure I keep my clippers oiled up."

Stallworth said she is the only member in her family who has formal education in hair styling, but her sisters also have a hand for cutting hair.

"I think it is inherited," Stallworth said. "My mom can't do hair -- she can't even do her own hair, but my sisters can do hair. I am just the only one that went to school for it."

Stallworth said she has been to Las Vegas in the past, but she looks forward to returning and competing in the styling competition.

"I look forward to competing and cutting hair," Stallworth said. "I always like to learn new stuff. I don't really know everything, but I just like to learn new ways to cut hair."

Stallworth competed in the May Color Contest and placed red highlights in the hair of two customers for the competition. Stallworth said she had completely forgotten about the contest and winning came as a complete surprise, adding that her response more than displayed her appreciation and joy.

"I was running everywhere, screaming and hugging everyone," Stallworth said. "I was so happy. Especially with everything being paid for. I was running all over the place like a little child with a new toy."

Stallworth was awarded an all-expense-paid vacation in Las Vegas August 18-21 for her work in the May Color Contest. She will compete with several other stylist from across the country on August 19.

According to Stallworth, styling hair has been a part of her life since her childhood and she feels it will continue to be a part of her life.

"It's about the only thing I know how to do," Stallworth said. "I have been cutting hair for a long time -- ever since I can remember. I just wanted a baby doll with long hair so that I could style it. I just like to get into someone's hair. Long or short, I just love to (cut) it off but in pretty styles."