A high school co-op term at a local hair salon inspired Taylor Sherman to hone his skills in Europe and return to Sarnia as the owner of his own business.
Sherman, 24, has been offering his brand of hair styling and hot towel shaves since opening Straight Edge Hair Co. in November at 163 Cromwell St.
It’s a dream come true that was supported by his parents, Jack and Marianna, says Sherman, who was adopted as an infant from Romania.
“My mom and dad really have my back,” he said. “I’m passionate about haircutting and always wanted to be doing it on my own.
“I’m very blessed to have been adopted by a good family that offers me the world.”
Following high school, Sherman pursued training at St. Clair College in Windsor, as well as Bluewater School of Hair Design and Lambton College in Sarnia.
He travelled to Mississauga for a student competition where he won in the avant garde category sponsored by the Joico hair product company.
“I’ve always been a rebel and done my own thing,” Sherman said with a smile. “When I was growing up, I’d practice by cutting wigs on mannequins in my garage. That’s how much I like cutting hair. To me, it’s all tied in with music and fashion.
“It’s about a lifestyle.”
He completed his apprenticeship in Sarnia under Michael Diebold at Adagio and worked in several Toronto salons, including the trendy Club Moshito on Queen Street and upscale Vidal Sassoon in Yorkville.
In 2012, friends Andre and Marisa Proia of Maran Fashions introduced him to Italian stylist Enzo Coppola, who Sherman describes as “a big hair guru in Sicily.”
Sherman was invited to work with Coppola in Sicily for six weeks where he was given a lot of hands-on opportunities to learn from a highly-regarded European professional.
“There’s so many ways to cut hair properly,” said Sherman. “A lot of teachers will say, no, there’s only one way. But I’ve learned many different techniques over the past six years and can give you the look you’re trying to achieve.”
He left the “go, go, go” of Toronto and returned to his hometown this year, freelancing for a while until his business plans took shape.
His new salon has an industrial vibe with grey walls and steel tool boxes converted into trendy tables. An old style barber’s chair sits in front of one mirror, and a regular stylist’s chair is in front of another.
Music – an important element of Sherman’s vision – streams hip hop, jazz and blues. Soon, a turntable will be available for vinyl selections. Sherman urges his customers to bring in their favourite records to play during their appointment.
“I chose to be downtown because I see this area really becoming something,” he said. “They are talking about new condos across the street from here.
“It’s really exciting that this is an up and coming market.”
Men’s haircuts cost $20, while women’s cuts start at $30. A hot towel shave and cut costs $30, and kids’ cuts are $15.
Contact Straight Edge Hair Co. at 519-383-3148 and check it out of Facebook.
BRIDAL ODYSSEY IN THE NEW YEAR
The 16th annual Bridal Odyssey returns Jan. 3 with a large show of quality exhibitors to help brides prepare for the big day.
Entry to the networking event at the Lambton Inn, 1485 London Rd., costs $5, which includes gift cards for the first 100 brides and chances to win prizes. It runs 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
For more, call Carol Goodwin at 519-337-7885.