Ditidaht woman Kelita Sieber stands proudly in front of her new salon that opened at Nitinaht Lake in July. (Submitted photo)
A Ditidaht woman is filling a gap at Nitinaht Lake by opening the community’s only hair and nail salon.
With help from the Ditidaht Development Corporation, Kelita Sieber was able to fulfill a dream of hers this July by owning and operating her own esthetics business - Sacred Cedars Salon.
Sieber said the idea to open a salon began last year when a member of the Ditidaht Development Corporation approached her about possibly opening a hair studio after several tourists wanted to get a hair cut but had no where to go.
“I thought about it over the winter and then I started the process in January and Ditidaht Development Corporation offered to help me with buying all the equipment and setting me up in a spot,” Sieber said. “It’s in [the Nitinaht Lake Motel] but it’s the old laundromat that was no longer in use so we converted it into a small salon.”
Sieber completed her education for hairdressing and esthetics back in 2009 and worked as a hairdresser until 2012. Since then, Sieber has moved back to Nitinaht Lake, where she was cutting hair out of her home to compliment her other jobs.
“I’ve worked in a lot of different jobs but I’ve always done hairdressing on the side,” Sieber said. “It wasn’t ideal to cut hair at home because the hair gets everywhere.”
Working many jobs and having a busy lifestyle is important to Sieber and for her recovery.
“I’ve been a year and seven months clean and sober,” Sieber said. “Having all this is a lot of motivation to stay clean so that’s why I do a lot. It’s part of my inspirational story.”
Opening a salon, especially in her community of Nitinaht, has been a dream of Sieber’s since hair school, but battling addiction for 11 years made it impossible. Now her community has embraced the new salon and staying busy has not been a problem for Sieber.
“I will go above and beyond for my community,” Sieber said. “I end up going in anyway on my night off because someone kindly asks me.”
In addition to haircuts and colouring, Sieber’s salon offers acrylic nail extensions and manicures.
Sacred Cedars Salon is open on Monday and Tuesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and Saturday and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome.
Sieber said she has all the required safety measures for COVID-19 in place and offers clients masks and hand sanitizer when they enter if they don’t have their own.
“Our community is closed to tourists so [the salon] is just for community members right now,” she said.