“It all happened and very naturally. I believe your vibe attracts your tribe and we just kept getting blessed with amazing people wanting to work for Hastings from around the city and some around the world,” Karolina, owner of Hastings Barbershop, tells me as we sit down at Hastings Snack Bar, which is attached to the barbershop. The pierogis here are apparently legendary, so I go all in - and goddamn they don’t disappoint.
The barbershops I tend to like (usually) do not to have multiple locations; but of course, there are exceptions, and Hastings is one of those. It seemed natural to (first) highlight the original Hastings location, where it all started - in Leslieville. “All of our shops are in different east-end neighbourhoods, but they’re all relatively close to each other… so in a way its all the same faces circulating among all the shops. If the shop by your house is full, another Hastings is just a few blocks away that might have an opening for you,” says Karolina between sips of water.
The small shop is decidedly “old-school” in aesthetic without getting sucked into the vortex of living in the past. Most importantly, it feels welcoming; a guy can just hang out here. “All of our clients are awesome in sharing the love for Hastings and the east-end. There’s not a specific group of people that come in. All are welcome. We’re not too cool or intimidating. What we’re going for is just your friendly neighbourhood barbershop. No pretences, not competing for Canada’s Next Top Barbershop. No egos. We just are who we are and we feel secure in that,” says Karolina. And I say, amen to that.
Hastings Barbershop (Leslieville location)
1270 Queen St E
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