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The Proudest Pony

Posted by Staff / Posted on January 25, 2011

Proudest Pony TorontoThe Proudest Pony is just a few months old, but it is already making its mark (or should I say, 'hoof print'?) on this quiet stretch of College.

Just east of Lansdowne Ave., this salon has brought a little style to a heavily residential area lacking in colour and flair. Not that this Proudest Pony is trotting ostentatiously. In fact, if you pass by too quickly, you'll probably miss it, as I did.

Proudest Pony TorontoJust big enough for three stations and with little room to spare, owner Ashley Brewer calls it a "boutique salon," while still a "comfortable place to hang out."

Proudest Pony Toronto"Normally there's art everywhere," she tells me. "Our next artist is sending work next week--a lot of urban-graffiti type stuff." In fact, the space used to be an actual art gallery; that is, until Brewer noticed on Craigslist that the space was available for lease. A spur-of-the-moment decision, she hopped on her bike and went to meet with the landlord. Ten days later, her first client was in her chair.

Proudest Pony TorontoCutting hair isn't new for Brewer, who has been working in Toronto for about eight years. She previously owned Blood, Sweat, and Shears on Queen W. and has had some of her clients follow her to her new space, which she has made entirely her own. "Everything in here was either built by me, bought on Craigslist, or bought from an antique market," Brewer says. "I tried to minimize the amount of new materials."

Proudest Pony TorontoThe massive black chandelier that welcomes you upon entering is one of Brewer's online steals. "Craigslist," she says proudly. "It was off-white when I bought it, $60." Another Craigslist buy now in the salon is an antique hair dryer chair (that still had cigarette butts in the ashtray when she bought it, Brewer says) and an olive-brown salon chair that sits at one station.

Proudest Pony TorontoAs for style in the chair, Brewer says since her client base is so diverse she gets to do lots of different cuts. "Though right now I'm digging the really soft, pretty styles," she says. "Natural and flowy." Women's cuts generally go for $65, men's are $45 and colour starts at $55.

Proudest Pony TorontoAnd who, or what, exactly is the 'proudest pony?' Well, besides a flat wooden rocking horse mounted on the wall, there's not a lot 'stallion' about this place.

Proudest Pony TorontoBrewer laughs. "I actually got the name from a friend. We were watching her dog trot around in the backyard one day and she said to him, 'Well aren't you the proudest pony?!' I loved it. I think other people do too. Some first-time clients told me they came in just for the name!"

Proudest Pony TorontoWriting by Robyn Urback. Photos by Dennis Marciniak.

Discussion

16 Comments

Curtis / January 26, 2011 at 10:05 am
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I get my hair cut here all the time!
Christella / January 26, 2011 at 10:44 am
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This is so rad! Ashley is the best!
Angelune / January 26, 2011 at 11:37 am
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This is the cutest place! And I think I looked pretty cute after having my hair done there! Go Brewer!
Lisa / January 26, 2011 at 11:45 am
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Super adorable spot. Great vibe, nice girls, and really fair prices. I'll definitely be back!
Kat / January 26, 2011 at 12:32 pm
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I love the proudest pony! Im so happy someone wrote this place up!
T2 / January 26, 2011 at 01:22 pm
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I know this is obviously a "boutique salon" geared towards women, and I'm certainly no expert on hairdressing markups and profit, but $45 for a men's haircut? You would have thought the address would be Cumberland or Hazelton. I'll take my business 5 minutes east and save $20 at Blood and Bandages, thank you. But best of luck with this, regardless.
Vars / January 26, 2011 at 05:32 pm
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The space to the right is for lease. Please someone create a Cafe,art gallery or something of equal radness there!
sjfbarnett / January 26, 2011 at 05:49 pm
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I became a regular of Ashley's since before she opened Proudest Pony. I followed her because she has a great personality and a drive that it was only natural {and exciting} that she opened this adorable boutique salon.

Let's hope she's started something that will continue further along this strip.

{ps. I've been to Blood & Bandages. It was bad attitude that forced us elsewhere…}
Ashley Brewer / January 27, 2011 at 09:47 am
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Yay! thanks so much, BlogTO, for this little write up and for all the lovely comments!
I feel its worth mentioning that Katrina Ciccarelli, who is amazing, and the Jr stylist at The proudest Pony, does mens cuts for $35 and womens cuts for $55, and Our prices include HST!
:D
Vi replying to a comment from T2 / January 27, 2011 at 03:15 pm
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T2, a $45 haircut at cumberland and hazelton? no such thing. I've worked in the area for years, I should know.
Dan / February 4, 2011 at 09:28 am
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I just got a hair cut there last month. It's good!
E / February 15, 2011 at 08:02 pm
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I've followed Ashley from her previous stint on Dundas West. Love her personality, friendliness, and of course the way she can cut hair. Colour always comes out fantastic.
I wish Ashley and The Proudest Pony the best of luck

Sarah / August 9, 2011 at 11:48 am
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I've been seeing Ashley from blood sweat and shears to random salons all over Toronto. Even that random corner in the black market lol she's amazing. Great attitude. Very talkative and listens to what you want and makes your hair look amazing. So happy she finally has her own salon! And only a bike ride away from my place! Hell yah! :)
Claire / February 3, 2012 at 03:28 pm
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katrina does it best..
Kim / December 13, 2012 at 04:42 pm
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Got my hair cut this week by Tiffany (I think?). It was an awesome place, she took her time, totally affordable and very personable. Just some cool chicks cutting hair!
Tamara / September 22, 2013 at 12:59 am
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to be happy. I've read this pput up and if I mayy I want to suggeat you
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