We had the good fortune of connecting with Michelle Rushing and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Michelle, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
When it comes to work/life balance, I can definitely say I had to grow in that area. At first, building my business was my only focus. I neglected almost everything else. I was taking a leap of faith, and my business was my only income at the time, so everything was riding on it. However, it took a toll on me over the years, and I decided that I wanted more out of life than “just” working or even “just” running a business. So I started to put boundaries in place with my clients slowly, and most of them received it well. I decided to do it slowly because it seemed unfair to change everything at one time since I had been the one that created a lack of balance. I believe that balance has made me a better businesswoman. I have learned how to care for my clients while also caring for myself and leaving space for new opportunities. Balance is freedom. As a business owner, it is important to value yourself, your clients, and your peace of mind, and that is liberating.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Natural Hair is just like a woven tapestry, intricate, complex, and multifaceted, but most importantly, it’s beautiful!! Located in Richardson, Texas, since 2017, Natural Tapestry Hair Care has focused on cultivating natural tresses and locs. Natural hair can feel overwhelming, transitioning can feel like a mistake, and locking can seem like it takes forever, but rest assured, natural hair is strong, diverse, and innovative. I desire that when you leave Natural Tapestry you will hold your head up high, your shoulders back, and make your statement to the world. It is a predominantly chemical-free salon, promoting and encouraging men and women alike to embrace their natural tresses. I specialize in natural hair care and styling, locs, and loc maintenance. What sets me apart is that when you enter my salon suite, you get your hair done, but we also have in-depth discussions surrounding race, current events, self-care, and life decisions. Many of my clients say they love how they receive “therapy” along with their service. In my opinion, what also sets me apart is that I truly care about my clients and their lives; they are more than just a time slot to me. I value what experience and knowledge they offer to me just as much as what I can offer to them. I am most proud of my clients’ consistency; they have followed me from one salon to starting my own business and adjusted now that I am in school earning another degree. I do not want to call them “loyal customers,” more like steadfast. We all are evolving together. Starting a business was not easy. I had a lot to learn and had never seen myself as an entrepreneur. I had just lost someone very dear to me, and that loss was the catapult I needed into what I have built today. That challenge cultivated a resilience that I never knew I had. I got to this place by being authentically myself, having integrity, and having good business practices. Many stylists may want to offer every type of service to bring in more money, but if you cannot carry out the service in an excellent way, you should not offer it. Integrity is key to growing a successful business. I want the world to know that Natural Tapestry is a safe space, where you can be your whole self, and we can learn from one another. And lastly, I am excited about expanding the business in the next year or so.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’m a bit of a homebody, but I would definitely take them to Soiree Coffee Bar in West Dallas for a laid-back environment that celebrates black culture. We would go to several museums, the Ft. Worth Zoo, and my friend’s art gallery if he were hosting an exhibit or paint party that week. And we would probably spend time at Chocolate Secrets on Thursday night for live jazz. (This is all post-COVID, of course)
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
If anyone I feel has played an intricate role in my success, it would be my friends and family. I tried to offer discounts or free services when I first started the business, but they refused to take them. My own mother pays full price, her choice, not mine! They encourage me to keep moving forward and keep creating space for men and women to promote who they are and what they represent in spaces that may not always affirm them. My friends and family are my balance. They make sure I am doing more than just working and that I make room for other things in my life.

Website: https://www.vagaro.com/naturaltapestry

Instagram: @natural_tapestry

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michelle-t-rushing-3b406340

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutDFW is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.