While walking through the cavernous room that housed the sixty-nine Wella International TrendVision competitors prepping their models, I came across Anastasia Krupovich and her team. I stopped, I watched for a minute or so, I moved on.
I came back.
I stopped again and couldn’t stop watching.
This was going to be something incredible, I just knew it.
And it was; Anastasia went on to win the Young Talent category of the International TrendVision Awards with her gorgeous woven, muted tone, hat-like updo. After the win, I had a small window to sit with Anastasia and her team and get their reaction, which was short, sweet and delivered amidst a swarm of hugs and ear-to-ear grins (mostly from the model and Anastasia’s assistant. The stylist herself seemed like she was still in shock). It was an incredibly heartwarming scene and I couldn’t help but feel a little pride that the look I had picked to win actually had won.
Below is the follow up interview conducted via email, where we learned a little more about the ITVA winner and what being a stylist in Lithuania is really like.
Tell us about yourself. Where are you from?
I was born in Ukraine, I am Russian and all my life I live in Lithuania.
How did you come to be a hairdresser?
Unless I was interested in marketing and interactive design at that time, I have decided to become a hairdresser. My art teacher introduced me about various opportunities how to develop my creative abilities and offered to become a hair stylists. It happened in senior class a few months before my school exams. I think, I made a perfect choice for my occupation.
What are your hobbies/talents outside of hairdressing?
I like sewing, I‘ve designed and made my ITVA model’s outfit by myself. A lot of my friends and not only, are turning to me with a request to design them a dress or anything they like.
What’s your day-to-day like?
I am working in the beauty salon 6-days a week, my working day starts at 10 a.m., therefore in the mornings I have time to go to the gym, and after work I usually sew. It’s a daily routine, that I’m happy with.
What makes you…you?
I’m always full of new ideas, all the time there are so much different things rolling in my head: new projects, competitions, fashion shows and much more. I am a lively person, want to try and experience a lot in my career.
Tell us about your country/culture: is hairdressing a common occupation for women? Are there many male hairdressers?
Actually in the salon Kirpimo meistrai (engl. translation “Hairdressing Masters”), where I am working, there more men hair stylists than women. It is still not typical in our country, but world is changing, hairdressing used to be a common occupation for women in the past. Today I notice, more and more men are selecting this profession. They like to follow latest trends in hair fashion, they want to create beauty and style.
What are the salons in Lithuania like? Any really cool ones that we should know about?
Normally, the beauty salon in Lithuania consists of 3 to 6 working places for hairdressers. There is also a separate room for manicure – pedicure, spa treatments and massages. Every salon owner wants his salon to be unique, conceptual, to stand out from others. Consequently, you can find cozy, modern and stylish salon interiors surrounded by comfortable serving staff atmosphere to make clients happy. Barber shop business became popular a few years ago. I see many men in the city with a professional hairdresser groomed beard. For myself, I pick out few salons, which has its own concept and are really cool: Kirpimo Meistrai, Kukla Beauty Box, Woxx Barbers, Grozio Loftas, Blanco Beauty and etc.
Do you feel like there is a particular style to Lithuanian hair/fashion? Can you describe it for us?
Despite the fact that our country is small, you can find a lot of beauty salons in Lithuania. Women are following fashion and want to be beautiful. As almost everywhere, older women are usually more classical. They want simple, but elegant haircut and natural looking hair color. Younger clients are more flexible to experience new cuts, colors and products.
Any stark differences between the Lithuanian beauty industry and the American or European ones that you see off the top of your head?
I think that there aren’t any big differences. There are a lot of education seminars organized for hair stylists to improve their skills, participate in the shows, various contests. I am happy to work with really great people and professionals, who inspire, encourage me and give direction at my every step I do. Certainly I always feel my colleagues and Wella trainer support for what I am doing.
…that’s why every Saturday after work, my model was sitting and doing her homework while I was crocheting her hair.
Tell us about your ITVA experience. Walk us through the process: how long did it take? what was involved? how did you arrive at your final look? how did you choose your model/wardrobe/etc?
The main idea was to give the hair completely uncharacteristic look, create different texture not relevant to hair. First, I thought about texture and color of the hair. I wanted to create the soft, dynamic hair texture and contrast it with sharp and static form. I decided to make one, that reminded me of a vietnamese hat and then there followed a long way to find a shape that would help texture to pop up. I used a crochet hook and a plastic net, which was later removed from the hair, strand after strand. During the 3 hours ITVA competition, I knew, that I have to do it really fast, that’s why every Saturday after work my model was sitting and doing her homeworks, while i was crocheting her hair.
When I asked you how you felt after you won, your answer was: “Stressed!” Now that some time has passed, how do you feel about the win?
It‘s true, at that moment i could not believe what‘s happening. I recognized what happened after few days only and i am really happy about my achievement. Now I think, it wasn’t “bad”stress – it was a bouquet of emotions, that probably feels a person after winning a jackpot:)).
Do you think this will change your life? How?
It won’t change dramatically, but it motivates and inspires me to do more and go further.
What’s next for you? Tomorrow? Next Year? In five years?
My beloved job, some new projects, Trend Vision Awards 2016 of course:) but you never know:)
What did you have for breakfast this morning?