Old Town Barbershop a nod to ‘simpler times’
Published 3:48 pm Monday, August 10, 2015
By LAURA BROOKHART / Community Columnist
Welcome to Jeff Richardson and Old Town Barbershop, a new business now open three months.
Richardson, who has been barbering since 1984, has relocated from Florence to 3993 Helena Road.
“This location has been phenomenal already,” he said. “It has surpassed what I expected. Local support has been great and we have really benefitted from First Fridays.”
Indeed, the exterior and interior tell you immediately that Richardson’s style is a great complement for Old Town.
A 1960s barber chair that Richardson picked up in North Alabama sits amidst his collections of old signs, music posters and other vintage finds.
Once an owner of a ‘50s Chevy, Richardson’s collected décor is based loosely on his first love – ‘50s and ‘60s cars, then added “anything that catches my eye.”
Old soda bottles and horseshoes, cow skulls and bullhorns are mounted about and copies Hemmings Motor News await perusal.
There’s an Elvis and Johnny Cash poster dated March 1956—a co-appearance made in Amory, Mississippi.
“You hear people say that Old Town Helena is sort of a little Mayberry,” he noted, “and I have done my own take on creating that atmosphere. You can watch Andy Griffith or The Three Stooges on the wide screen TV mounted under the mantle of the nearby fireplace.”
It’s an atmosphere that calls back simpler times, reminds his customers of going to the barbershop back in their own younger days.
“And I want you to feel like you’re just comfortably hanging out in your own den.”
Richardson says his barbering philosophy is based on developing relationships and giving a great haircut.
“When I do a short cut, I finish with hot lather on the back of the neck and straight razor cut, then add a dab of after shave.”
“The concept of the all-men’s shop is fading; unisex and hipster are growing, but I am not interested in heading in that direction. I nosed around Southside when looking for my new location, but doors seemed to open leading me here to Helena.”
Old Town Barbershop is open Tuesday-Friday, 9-6 p.m. and Saturday 8-2 p.m.
Call (205) 999-0868 for appointment or just walk in and be greeted by Jeff and Tasha, his chow-mix dog who also comes to the shop every day.