Oh Biba, look at you now!

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The transformation of 222 Timor St, Warrnambool continues, with a new hairdressing salon filling the bottom floor. Image courtesy of Sinead Murphy.
As it was before the transformation by Luke and Nat Taylor began early last year.

[dropcap style=”font-size: 60px; color: #A02F2F;”] L [/dropcap]ate last year, Bluestone Magazine captured the transformation of 222 Timor St, Warrnambool, from a derelict heritage-listed building to a wonderful, character-filled space that was ripe for a new tenant.

And while the building is still not completely finished – owners Luke and Nat Taylor have plans for an apartment and residence on the top floor – it has started a new chapter in its 164-year history with the arrival of the upmarket hairdressing salon, Biba.

It is the first Biba to be opened outside of metropolitan Melbourne and marks a return to Warrnambool for owner, Mia Nicolson, who had previously worked at Paris Hair and Beauty in East Warrnambool.


Mia Nicolson, left, has made a conscious decision to keep the character of the building…while adding some quirky and funky touches. Image courtesy Sinead Murphy (http://www.sinead-murphy.com/)


[dropcap style=”font-size: 60px; color: #A02F2F;”] M [/dropcap]ia has made a conscious effort to capture the character of the old building, while adding some very modern and funky touches.

There is a vintage barber’s chair (picked up from the Mailors Flat secondhand store), a heavy work bench from Melbourne, and old wooden boxes from Ponting Bros that Mia found in her grandmother’s stables, but also an eye-catching, off-beat mural by local artist Felix Pilling that dominates one wall of the colour bar. Recycled leadlight glass enhances an antique window in the same room.

“Biba salons have an industrial look, so I have added some of those industrial features while also linking in to the heritage aspects of the building,” Mia explains.

The series of photos below capture the full transformation. The Biba images were taken by talented graphic designer and photographer Sinead Murphy who has kindly given us permission to reproduce them here. (You can find Sinead’s website here.)

Nat and Luke Taylor, with son Lewis, in the front room of the building early last year.
The same space today is almost unrecognisable and forms the main entrance to the salon. The vintage barber’s chair is to the left and the old workbench doubles as a reception desk.
As it was: the back room behind the main salon space.
The same space converted into a ‘colour room’, complete with the leadlight-enhanced antique window.
One long wall of the colour room now features a mural by local artist, Felix Pilling.

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