Willies Hair Salon: The hidden gem inside Hughes-Trigg

With a big job interview approaching Chris Gaut, a 2011 SMU graduate, found himself in need of a haircut. He wanted the cut on the same day as the interview in order to be look his best.

“It had to be close to campus, so I went to Willie’s,” said Gaut

Gaut eventually went on to get a full time job as an audio visual technician for SMU. Although he doesn’t know for sure, his fresh cut from Willies just might of given him the upper hand.

Willies Hair Salon is operated by Willy Morris, who has been cutting hair on campus since 1973.

Willie speaks with a customer after finishing a haircut.
Willie speaks with a customer after his haircut.

Willies, as it is affectionately known, is open from Tuesday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Originally located in the Umphrey Lee Center, Willies moved to its current location in the Hughes Hughes-Trigg Student Center in 1983.

The shop is tucked away in the corner of Café 100. Most students might not notice it at first. But when they do, they often note the salon’s comfortable southern style that makes them feel at home. Texas memorabilia litters the walls, and there is the faint sound of country music being played over the radio.

Morris can always be found in the shop with a smile on his face doing what he loves most.

“It’s just been real fun this entire time, ” said Morris.

Morris first began cutting men’s hair at a shop called University Barber across the street on Hillcrest. Looking to make a move to another location, Morris was contacted by a friend who had a space on the SMU campus. Morris made the decision to take his talents to SMU in 1973 and Willies Hair Salon was born.

“I have a lot of repeat customers who come here, over five generations of them,” said Morris.

Robert Williams is one of those customers. Williams first got his haircut by Morris in 1970 and has gone to the barber ever since. With much less hair, and a lot more gray in it, Morris still gives Williams the same haircut.

“He is probably one of the best barbers in Dallas,” said Williams “I always recommend him to people.”

Willie and his wife Peggy take care of the shop.
Willie and his wife Peggy take care of the shop. 

The variety of costumers, both new and old are one of the things that Morris loves about what he does. Morris explained that working on campus and getting to interact with the students keeps him young. He is also able to learn a lot about other cultures and places because of the students’ various backgrounds.

“People come in and are from different parts, especially the students, and they are always real surprised that I know something about where they are from,” said Morris

Peggy Morris, Willie Morris’ wife, loves the costumers just as much as Willie does. For the past five years Peggy Morris has been coming into the shop every Friday to help out and to interact with the customers.

“I love the kids that come in and all the different people. They are just awesome,” said Peggy

One of those students is graduating senior Jordan Silver. Silver plans on visiting Willies’ after his mom gave him some style advice.

“My mom really wants me to get a haircut at Willies’ before graduation so I can look my best,” said Silver.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.