Make Something: With a Friend

Oh, how I wish today’s make something prompt had come up four days ago, for Day 200!

The 200th assignment was to make something with hair. I scraped by with a cat hair “sculpture.” Today, just four day’s later, I had an appointment with my stylist, who I’m sure could have helped me create something miraculous with my own hair.

But all is not lost. For today’s assignment was this:

“Ask a friend you haven’t talked to in a while for a suggestion of what to do today … Bonus: Get your friend involved in the actual thing you make.”

Julie Arenstein has been cutting my hair for more than a decade. I’ve followed her from salon to salon, and now I drive nearly an hour to sit in her home-based “beauty chair.” Other than the occasional Facebook post or text message, we only talk during my appointments, every six or seven weeks.

But who needs daily interaction? Julie is one of my best friends. We know so much about each other. Most visits, I barely have two feet in the door when our conversations race right past small talk to the things that really matter: our kids, our relationships, our health, our bodies, our opinions, our ideas, our fears, our hopes …

I knew Julie wouldn’t shy away from a shared creative challenge. As soon as I explained the mission, she suggested we tear into the magazines at the bottom of her stash (the Family Circle issues featuring fresh, summery foods) and find words that we could combine into some collaborative work. I grabbed June, July, and August. Once my hair was saturated in color and wrapped in spiky, foil bundles, she went for a pair of paper-worthy scissors. We set to work.

We both searched for the first few words and phrases, then Julie dropped to the shop floor and started arranging the bits. I kept looking and cutting, passing her slips of paper whenever I found something “good.” She considered and edited and assembled.


in the spirit of the wild,
what I want is to get inspired!
Write the next chapter.
Fly higher.
Smile a lot more.
Rejuvenate and reflect.
Go ahead, be fabulous,
Your way.
You’re always a role model to somebody.

Never has my color processed so quickly. We both had a great time.

We photographed the finished message and left it in place, just below the swiveling salon chair, while she washed, rinsed, and cut my hair. Once it was time to blow-dry, we agreed she should aim her dryer at the floor. Our poetry scattered, mingled with the hair she had cut from my head.


Who cares? Not only do we have photos, we had an unforgettable creative experience. Together.

Thanks, friend.

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