The Barberia in Spilamberto seems to be one of the few shops in tune with the old-fashioned atmosphere that you can breathe in the streets of this small village. Drawing from tradition, but with a strong desire to innovate, they ride time and keep past and future together. Paolo and Francesco open the doors and tell us their brief history. Paolo says: “This place was a haberdashery until two years ago. After it closed down, as the place belongs to us, I tried to rent it out. However, nobody was willing to rent it, so I decided to take the lead. I shaped my passion for shaving tools. Born out of love, the research for quality has become more a personal pleasure than a necessity.” They started by selling products for beards, and added fragrances, cosmetics and products for men’s grooming in general. All items are not commercial and of the best quality. This history evolves with a hybridization: “After one year of bureaucratic struggles we have finally been able to host a barber who works here on Sunday mornings. It is quite successful, because it is a cuddle, and the shop almost always fills up.” Then – plot twist – the barber, who kneads my beard with an excellent ointment, is a woman: “I began 45 years ago as a unisex hairdresser. I am specializing in beards because it is something that really fascinates me. All that lies behind this workmanship requires not only studies but above all a lot of experience. It is completely different from the world of hair: to be able to use scissors is not enough to shape a beard. Furthermore we try to set the overall treatment of beards according to tradition.” But what about opening a true barber shop? “It would be a dream. She should retire in a short while, but I don’t think she is going to stop working. We should try to convince her.” It’s great to notice the satisfaction in Paolo’s words: “When we opened the shop, there was nothing in here. I am not a tradesman, therefore suppliers didn’t trust me. Now the shop is rich in items and varied, and it keeps on growing”.
Corso Umberto I, 39