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STYLIST SPOTLIGHT: ANDREA

The First Ward Studio Tulsa Oklahoma Hair Stylist Andrea Piper

You’ve let her wash your hair and scrub your brains, but what do you really know about TFW styling assistant Andrea Piper? In honor of her one-year anniversary at the salon (yowza!), we thought it was time to give her the spotlight and let you know where this goth angel came from.

Like a true fantasy heroine, Andrea came to Tulsa by way of the Valley of the Sun (Phoenix) as a social-worker-by-day, makeup-genius-by-night (that’s like a costume?). She was saving lives left and right, but realized her own life was lacking something. She decided to combine her powers and started pursuing a job in hair and makeup more seriously. After she worked at MAC Cosmetics and studied at Paul Mitchell, she found us, and we’re lucky she did. She has so many cute animal videos we've never seen before. 


Name: Andrea (rhymes with Ham-dree-ah)

Age: 31

List all the colors you have dyed your hair.
Green, purple, red, orange, blue (currently), early 2000s foil blonde. The first color I ever did was pink when I was thirteen. My mom and I did pink highlights through a cap.

What color is next?
This morning I googled “witch hair” to learn what kind of hair a witch would legitimately have. Lots of texture, long, natural and wild. That’s what I want next.

If you could have the hair of any animated character, who would it be and why?
Wonder Woman. So much body and shine! It’s also has a blue tint sometimes. If my blue hair looked as lush as that, I’d keep it forever.

What was the last song stuck in your head?
Ever since Sarah played “Return of the Mack” in the salon (months ago), I hear it everywhere and it’s always stuck in my head. Did you know Burger King is using it in a commercial now?

You love have two little dogs named Toby and Akiko.
What do you think their voices sound like?
Toby is very grumpy and aloof, he would sound like Eeyore. Akiko is the opposite. She’s very girly and sensitive and dainty.

What does Phoenix have that Tulsa needs?
More cultural food options spread throughout the city.

Your family owns an Italian restaurant. If you were a pasta noodle, which would you be and why?
All the best dishes are with penne pasta. I’d also probably be penne because I’m short and I absorb what’s around me. I adapt to my surroundings.

Describe your favorite tattoo on your body.
Probably the cat church from Pet Sematary or the Beetlejuice tombstone.

If you were a phoenix, what would you do in your next life?
In college I wanted to be an anthropologist or paleontologist. I wanted to study cultures and dig up dinosaur bones. 

How does your social work background affect your life as a hairdresser?
I think it definitely improved my listening skills. Most people probably don’t think you need to be a good listener and empathetic as a hairdresser, but I disagree. It helps you connect with your client.


Follow-up questions?
Chat her up during your next visit to see James or Jessica. Or, if you have an event coming up, we can set up a time for a makeup application or blow-out. During Andrea’s apprenticeship, she will also be honing her skills through classes, and classes need models. We’re currently looking for ladies interested in chopping their locks for a pixie cut and men that want to grow their short cuts out.

Follow Andrea’s work on IG: @thescissorsofmercy
Check out the whole team here.

The First Ward Studio Tulsa Oklahoma Hair Stylist Andrea Piper

Mark About Town

The First Ward Salon Tulsa Interview Mark Perkins
The First Ward Salon Tulsa Interview Mark Perkins

If you live in the Tulsa area, you've probably seen this face around town. But what do any of us really know about Mark Perkins? He loves a good glass of wine, an impromptu trip anywhere in the world, and he cares deeply about our fair city.  We sat down with this local enigma to get to the bottom of the important issues. Like, what is his Bacon Number? And, does Jessica give accurate tarot readings?  


What does "hygge" mean to you?

The First Ward Salon Tulsa Interview Mark Perkins

One of the beautiful attributes of hygge, and what makes it tricky to define, is that it is a concept that means something a little different to everybody.  It is both personal and universal.  For me, it’s that moment in which you find yourself content.  It’s the sensation more than the fact of being physically and mentally comfortable and untroubled.  It is related to coziness, but it has an extra kick that makes it an understated, half-conscious half-subconscious joyful coziness inclusive of multiple senses.  

Imagine finding yourself cozy, lounging with your favorite person after a night full of laughter and solid conversation, looking into the fire but not focused on it, during one of those seven-minute silences (not an uncomfortable one…a reflective one with a half-grin), and, as the illumination in the room dances with familiar cadence, the fire crackles just right, both breaking and prolonging the silence as its done since the beginning of time, while the fragrance of burning wood comingles with the residual scent of that delicious meal you improvised earlier using the beautiful ingredients you picked up at the farmer’s market you stumbled upon while exploring that cool autumn morning.  Hygge.  Or, imagine lying in the cool grass, late in the afternoon, with the sun hitting everything at the right angle but your eyes, which are looking up at the uniquely-perfect-for-that-day clouds speckled across a big sky, while a breeze comes in waves, audibly (and visually in your periphery) rustling the leaves of the semi-distant trees, reminding you of when you were a kid, having the exact same sensation without a specific memory attached to it.  Hygge.

Everyone in Tulsa seems to know you.
Are you Tulsa’s Kevin Bacon?
Do you know Kevin Bacon?

I don’t know him, but my Bacon number is 3, which is pretty good.  I was in Bring It On with Kirsten Dunst, who was in Spider Man 3 with Theresa Russell, who was in Wild Things with Kevin Bacon. 

Oysters vs. Crawdads?

Well, I have a healthy obsession with crawfish.  My sister-in-law is from LA…she opened my eyes long ago.  It’s tough to beat a proper crawfish boil, or Cajun food in general for that matter. Frankly, the Dionysian outlook that permeates Cajun culture as I’ve seen it is something to be embraced and celebrated.  As a society, we probably need more of it, though not the caricaturization of it (if that’s a word).  And crawfish is the perfect representative of the culture that prepares it best.  

Crawfish has a latent, delicious beauty that needs to be teased out of it.  It needs spice, it craves attention, it likes to be complemented by other flavors without being overshadowed.  Ready to let loose and dance, it has a symbiotic relationship with the chef who prepares it.  In the hands of a good chef, crawfish reaches its apex, and is capable of doing so because it is ready to party.  Full of potential. Ready to burst forth in a flurry of bliss.  And the personality of the chef, and indeed the crowd gathered to enjoy it, emerges, uniquely, at every crawfish boil, and shines through in the flavor that is aroused.  Perfectly imperfect, ready to party, full of the emotion.  The yin to the yang. 

Oysters, on the other hand, don’t need any assistance.  The lucky ones are innately beautiful.  The last thing they need is encroachment, or some blowhard’s idea of what they should be.  Similar in their carefree attitude, but different in their state of contentment. They are what they are; a product of the environment from where they come.  And what they are shines through in their most natural state. The good ones were born with it, and are uninterested in being inspired to be anything else. Like Allen Iverson, they don’t give a fuck.  They are a product of their environment, they know with focused precision that the best thing they can offer the world is to be what they are not what someone else wants them to be.  When they have it, they have it, and nothing can make it better, especially not overbearing shit like horseradish.  Their flavor tells a story worth listening to, if you’re only willing to listen.  They taste like an experience worth experiencing.  They taste like the sea; they taste specifically like the sea from which they came.  If you give them the attention they deserve, they will take you to the particular stretch of the world they used to call home.  An oyster is a tour guide that will take you to a far away place you may not know, but that you can experience if you allow yourself to listen with all of your senses.  Oysters are like wine.  And, like wine, they should be the ones telling the story.

The First Ward Salon Tulsa Interview Mark Perkins

You have the hair of a Disney Prince. 
Which princess is your soulmate?
Who had the best hair? 

Well, my first love was Ariel, but I’ve grown up a little.  So I’ll go with Belle as my soul mate.  She’s adventurous, intelligent, curious, strong, and effortlessly beautiful.  She marches to the beat of her own drum, but is not self-centered.  She is in fact pretty selfless.  Her farthest adventure afield was for others. She is both picky and romantic, and obviously is open to trying new things.  She’s an idealist.  And finally, apparently, she will also soon be played by one of my celebrity crushes, Emma Watson. Icing on the cake.

Best hair?  They all have pretty great hair (except for Snow White, obviously).  Rapunzel…her hair is literally legendary.  But I can’t get past her name reminding me of a beastie boys lyric.  And, honestly, who wants their hair to be that long?  Nobody, that’s who.  Can you imagine all the hassles it would cause, even locked in a castle (pun intended)?  Belle has really great hair, but she’s my soul mate despite that not because of it.  She could do whatever she wanted with her hair and she’d still be elegant and gorgeous.  Jasmine is exotic and gorgeous, free spirited, curious, compassionate, beautiful, and strong.  She’s also innocent, stubborn, and can be a little sassy.  Adorable.  But I’ll go with Merida.  Can you believe those locks?  Get outta here!  I’d be that creepy guy at a party she didn’t really know who’d ask to touch her hair.  Men have died for less than a fistful of those locks! Curls for life!  Ride on, red hot mama, girl, you sure look good to me!

The First Ward Salon Tulsa Interview Mark Perkins

Where in the world is Mark Perkins going next (literally + figuratively)?

I have a few little trips planned, but I’m most excited about visiting the middle east in the fall.  A few weeks ago, I booked a round trip flight to Dubai for $671!  Dubai isn’t really my destination though…it’s just a transit hub on the other side of the world that I could get to on the cheap.  Aside from spending a few days in the UAE, I have a blank canvas for a couple weeks; I’m thinking some combination of Israel/Palestine/Jordan/Egypt.  Or maybe East Africa.  I’m not really sure yet, but it’ll be fun to plan.  I’m open to suggestions…

Figuratively, I have no idea.  Hopefully, it involves a whole lotta hygge.

Has anything in Jessica's tarot reading proven to be true?

Not really. I think the first card was off.  The Empress is always a part of who I am.  My future is what it is, and yet to be determined, but by definition cannot yet be proven true.  I hope to always be a spoke on the Wheel of Fortune, open to what comes, swept up in the momentum I create by conscientious decision-making. Destiny is the cocktail made of ingredients determined by good living.


As with any good mystery, we still have questions but feel once step closer to understanding Mr. Perkins. Thanks, Mark, for taking the time to chat with us. Now we're gonna go watch Bring It On in slow motion to see if he's telling the truth. 

- Team TFW

Yelp! In the Name of Love

The First Ward / Yelp / Sarah Morgan Interview 2016

Maybe we're biased, but we think our clients are the nicest people we know. Everyday we are spoiled with great conversation, business ideas, and the chance to just hang out with whomever is sitting in our chairs. Fortunately for us, many of you have proved that the love is mutual via online reviews. And while we wish we could give every reviewer five stars and seven minutes in heaven, we have to first and foremost thank Sarah Morgan, a.k.a. the woman who introduced Tulsa to Yelp.

The First Ward / Yelp Tulsa / Sarah Morgan Interview 2016

For those who don't know, Yelp is a user-based local business review and social networking website. Sarah is Yelp Tulsa's Community Manager and the #1 cheerleader for all things Tulsa.  As a small business, we weren't sure how we could use the site to our advantage until Sarah showed us the light. In our opening year, Sarah hosted a Yelp Elite party to help promote the salon, and this year nominated The First Ward to represent Tulsa at a national conference. Now, we are officially convinced that Yelp is an incredibly useful tool for building the business of your dreams. Thanks, Sarah!

Though she has helped the salon tremendously, our appreciation for Sarah Morgan is not strictly professional. Sarah's infectious personality is welcome any day at The First Ward. She always comes armed with theatrical life updates and announcements, often in the form of family dance videos and photos of baby Forrester in costume (tip: you probably want to get on her Christmas card mailing list). The more you get to know her, the more you realize Sarah is absolutely the best person for her job. That's why, without further ado, we decided to ask her a couple questions and have our cutest interview to date. 


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1. Congratulations on being named one of Tulsa's Top 40 under 40 in 2016. Most Tulsans know you from Yelp, but your involvement with the community started long before that. What's your story?

Shuuucks you guys! Thanks! I feel like there are 4,000 people deserving of the award.

I grew up(ish) as the spawn of an Air Force family so I bopped around a lot before landing around San Antonio for high school. On a leap of faith, with no friends or family in Oklahoma, I decided to go to OU for undergrad. There’s so much opportunity to get involved in Oklahoma and it just felt exciting. After graduating I stayed in Norman / worked in OKC for a couple of years then got married to a bodacious dude who was going to more school in Tulsa, so that’s how we landed here 5 years ago – again, not knowing a soul.

Tulsa has served up a whole lotta life in such a short time. I’ve been challenged and grown with varied experiences which led me to what I’ll call my ‘career’ of starting the Yelp Tulsa community three years ago. How did it start? Well, at one of my Tulsa jobs at the Jazz Hall of Fame there was a pop-up Buffalo Lounge venue (through the Oklahoma Film & Music office) where I met some of my best friends and mentors. I stalked and followed to help them with their SXSW showcases for a few years and poof: my world was forever better.

The First Ward / Yelp / Sarah Morgan Interview 2016

2. Yelp gives a voice to small, hard-working businesses, and we have benefited greatly from having this platform available in Tulsa. Why do you think Yelp is so important for our community?

Golly, I could gush over the Yelp Tulsa community for a long time. There are so many different ways to use Yelp. Yelpers can gush about everything on the site – from spas, dog groomers, restaurants, rad events like Tulsa Tough & Oktoberfest to their apartment complexes. And of course, business owners can join the conversation through their free business tools over at biz.yelp.com.

Having this platform is so important for Yelpers and businesses alike. Going into a city and being able to pull up the app and know what the locals know in an instant makes life so much more fun wherever you are! Everyone should also check out yelp.com/elite. This community of solid active Yelpers get access to exclusive events to learn more about businesses in the city they love! Check out this turbo-rad event...

Yelp Tulsa also nominated The First Ward to rep at Yelp HQ in San Francisco last fall for being a bad-ass biz at Yelp’s Coast to Coast Summit and Jessica Bond made Tulsa look 5-star sexy.

3. You have a front-row seat to what's new in Tulsa. What trends have you noticed and what do you think is here to stay? 

I’m totally not just saying this because I’m talking to you guys… but mad hot sauce in Tulsa’s bag kind of swag style thanks to YOU GUYSSS! The First Ward keeps me out of my mom jeans (or tells me when to put them on). Also, Yelpers are into all of the ways Tulsa is making workouts fun and more of an experience! From glow ride cycle classes to rooftop and aerial yoga to trampoline parks – Yelpers are getting fit!

4. Your husband Colin is also a client of ours, and you two have one of our favorite love stories. Can you remind us how you met? 

I am head over heels and all the heart eye emojis freaking in-love with Colin Morgan. Obviously, I’m pretty openly awkward so bear with me on this one…

Open scene: Sarah: Hi Colin! Nice to meat you. Oh, you’re playing Wii bowling? That’s cool. I
(accidentally) broke my mom’s 5 pound dog’s jaw once when I was playing that.
Close scene.

Open scene: (Sarah is making mixed tapes with a mutual friend/roommate of Colin’s – Mark. Another roommate is banging on Colin’s door to come out – Brian.)
Mark: (When Colin comes out looking dapper) Uhhhh… I gotta go. But you two stay here and talk. (Colin sits by an unshowered, probably stinky Sarah.)
Colin starts getting to know Sarah.
Sarah thinks to herself “Erm… Is this guy hitting on me?! No way. He’s way outta mah league.”
Close scene.

Open scene: Sarah & Colin start hanging out/making out. After first small kiss, Sarah leaves little hershey’s kisses on his car with a note “Your kisses are really sweet.” (Guuuuuuu I KNOW!!!)
Sarah slips Colin the tongue in the next kiss. Sarah then leaves one of those big hershey kisses on his car.
Colin doesn’t get it. The big kisses cease as Colin doesn’t think (still to this day) Sarah slipped him the tongue. Sarah is mortified (is she that bad of a kisser?!). Now when any kisses come about she gives a quick peck on the lips then turns away. Colin begins to think she’s over him. 
Close scene.

The First Ward / Yelp / Sarah Morgan Interview 2016

Open scene: Sarah thinks it’s time to have their DTR. She invites him in her apartment basement (which only had 6 ft. ceilings so Colin has to duck every time he comes in).
Sarah: Hey… if we were a book, what page would we be on? 
Colin: (Looks in Sarah’s eyes and says a bunch of things…) Is that OK?
Sarah: Ya! (Sarah got so nervous, she blacked out. Has no idea if they are together for another 2 months.) 
Close scene.

Open scene: Next DTR Colin brings up on April Fool’s Day.

(More wishy-washy and awkward stories.)

Open Scene: They get married!
Close scene.

Open Scene: They get pregnant! 
Close scene.

Open Scene: They have a Mister Baby (who is now also a client of Krystle’s.) 
Close scene.

Open Scene: Colin has busted the butt of 5 nice pants at weddings dancing together (including his own).  Sarah has lost 8 toenails from dancing together. 
Close scene.

5. One of our favorite reviews is from a mysterious guy named "Carl S." Can you introduce us? We want to interview him next. 

Carl. Man’s got wicked sweet writing style. Let’s coin the phrase: “Yelp Crush on fleek!” (Is that how you use ‘on fleek?’)