LONG BEACH — It’s fresh fades and hot lather, free drinks and minute massages. And yes, there’s even an Xbox for kids to play Fortnite.
When Gail Barella opened up Barella’s Barbershop in early March, she considered all the comforts a man — and boy — could want and included them in her business, where she plans to specialize in short haircuts for men and boys of all ages.
“I love blending and fading the hair, just having someone feel like Jell-O in my chair,” Barella said following a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday, Feb. 27, in Long Beach.
“When they walk out the door I want them to feel 10 times better than when they walked in.”
Like mother, like daughter
Barella is adept with a straight razor and doing beard trims, skin and military-style fades, which she considers her specialty.
“It’s a passion and a challenge,” she said.
Barella has been a licensed barber in Oregon and Washington the past 13 years but was first inspired by her mother, Gypsy Myers, who works at the Healthy Hound in Longview.
“My mom has been a dog groomer for 40 years, maybe a little longer,” Barella said. “She’s always liked to do dog fur and I always like to do human hair.”
Barella gained experience while working at other barbershops in the area and learned the latest styles including skin fades and ‘hard-part’ haircuts.
“There’s a lot of things you can do with short hair,” Barella said. “You can ‘pomp’ it up, have a classic fade or crew cut.”
Barella mentioned the ‘feather,’ a hairstyle made popular by Farrah Fawcett in the 70s and 80s, as a style she would like to see return, along with one peculiar men’s style from the same era.
“It would definitely have to be the mullet,” Barella said. “But not the Brady Bunch perm.”
Preparing the barbershop for the official opening was a group effort from friends, family and local businesses.
Taft Plumbing assisted with sink installation. Hayley Gustafson helped with interior painting and Abbracci Coffee Bar owner Ricky Holmes donated the mirrors and stations. The outside signage was created by Longview-based Skolrud Signs.
Several friends and family — her wonderful husband most of all — contributed time and effort to clean and paint before attending a Feb. 27 ribbon cutting-ceremony.
“It was a real true community effort,” Barella said.
By way of thanks and ongoing community involvement, Barella plans to coordinate a drop-off location for donations for the needy in coming months.