Former construction worker Francisco Jimenez who opened The Barber Classic Cuts and Shaves in the Rosemary District earlier this month never thought the messy fades he gave neighborhood kids on his front-porch steps as a teenager would become a career.
It started around 10 years ago when his construction career crashed.
Jimenez, then 30, said he had to take care of his family and began barber school in Bradenton.
“I started cutting kids in the neighborhood — my brother’s friends — and then I kind of found an art to it,” he said. “I kind of liked that. It just made me feel good inside.”
The kids trusted Jimenez who said they pretty much messed up each other’s hair.
“We didn’t know what we were doing,” he said.
Jimenez went to school at Bradenton Beauty and Barber Academy where they taught him how to do perms, roller sets and blow dry women’s hair, skills he thought he was wasting his time learning.
Men apparently like to be pampered, too, he discovered.
He carried over facial massages, hot towels, and pin-point straight-edge razor shaves to his repertoire when he began working at Southside Village Barbershop on Hillview about six years ago.
Jimenez said he was hired Debbie Schneider who taught him some of the finer skills needed to give a proper shave.
“It’s crazy how everything came together at the end,” he said. “I was new I didn’t know a lot about the art. I give credit to her for teaching me a lot about shaving.”
Schneider retired in 2014 and around the same time Jimenez began looking for a place to open his own shop. Late in 2016 he found the perfect location in the Rosemary District, a neighborhood with a variety of shops and services.
The Barber Classic Cuts and Shaves opened on Jan. 4 just a short walk from where a condo unit is being constructed, which Jimenez said he hopes fills with potential customers.
Each person who walks in pays for his patience and clean lines, but he wants everyone to know this isn’t your grandpa’s barbershop. You can get a modern style here.
Just like he read books about hairstyles when he was a teenager, Jimenez said he goes online to study the latest cuts and shaving techniques. He takes about 45 minutes on a shave and his traditional haircut costs include a hairstyle, nose and eyebrows.
Beard trims are extra but the cost can be reduced with a hair style.
“The barbershop is slowly starting to come back,” Jimenez said. “I tell guys to try it out; it’s something different.”
The shop incorporates an art gallery, including portraits of Jimi Hendrix, Marilyn Monroe, and boxing heavyweight champion Mike Tyson available for sale.
They were painted by local professional boxer, Aaron Jaco, Jimenez said.
“I like that style: a barbershop in a gallery style,” Jimenez said.
For appointments contact: Francisco Jimenez at the barbershop at (941) 413-5937. The shop can be found online at The Barber SRQ on Facebook.