Avgitas Karambinas, the owner of Bristle and Blade Barber Supplies, wants you to know two things.
First, the hair care business is his passion.
“I was raised in the business; I paid a lot of dues,” Karambinas said in a recent interview. Those dues, he said, included sweeping floors for free and convincing his parents that college wasn’t for him.
Second, if you go to his establishment located on New Britain Avenue, there are no “frills and thrills.” You’ll get a terrific haircut with great service, he said.
“That’s how the Europeans do it,” he said. “It’s like a shoemaker who needs to get a job done, and it gets done.”
Haircuts are are $28. He also offers towel shaves and men’s hair tinting.
As straightforward as his message sounds, the fact is that Karambinas has put a lot of thought and hard work into his shop to realize his dream.
The whole design of the shop, from the height of the countertops to the overall decor, is geared toward “straight service,” he said of his shop that has three chairs for him and his two part-timers.
“Everything is figured out for service,” he said. “I put a lot of blood, sweat and tears in here.”
Not that there aren’t nice touches, too. Clients who come in to the shop are offered water or espresso. And Karambinas has a natural gift for holding an interesting conversation, a part of a barber’s job description that, it seems, has been lost in this generation.
West Hartford isn’t new to Karambinas, a Newington resident who worked at West Hartford Professional Family Hair Care at 18 LaSalle Road for 5 years before opening up Bristle and Blade.
And all he asks of his former clients is to stop by the shop to see what he’s done.
“Come take a look; they will recognize that I’m someone who is passionate [about what he does],” said Karambinas, who studied under Carmelo Gugliotti at the International Institute of Cosmetology. “I take a lot of pride in what I do. I like West Hartford a lot. I know what I have to offer. …
“We know how to take care of them. People can get a haircut anywhere. Our services has to be on point for them to come back.”Bristle and Blade Barber Supplies is open from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome and appointments are appreciated.