the hotsy-totsiest barber around
Sault Ste Marie is one of those fabulous locations where you can always find something cool to do or somewhere fun to be. It is a colorful city of nature and life and wonderful characters going about their business, smiling at one another and sharing a laugh. Among the spectacular shining stars of Sault Ste. Maries local businesses owners is Paula D’Agostino, owner of Big Guns Barbershop.
For fifty years the building that would become Big Guns Barbershop was the Greenwoods Locksmiting building. After four years on the marketplace, it would become Paula’s passion project to build from scratch her ideal barbershop. Needless to say, the building needed a little bit of love after four years without proper upkeeping, however, by the hands of Paula and her loved ones they transformed this retired building into the most fantastic retro barbershop.
Big Guns Barbershop was Paula’s vision, but her deepest gratitude goes to her family and friends, especially her mother and father who put tremendous support and effort into helping Paula renovate her Barbershop. Beautiful from top to bottom, gold on the ceiling, checkerboard floor tiles, and of course, classic red barber chairs. Jazz playing softly on the jukebox and a large collection of vintage signs and shaving equipment decorating the walls. Paula’s flair and passion for this time are so brilliant we believe she must have lived another life in the golden era. It is that exact flare that we love to see when we visit Big Guns Barbershop.
“I never actually planned to own my own shop, I just knew that I had always wanted to be a barber. I knew since I was eight years old and would watch my Nonno and my father shave. I was always inspired by all of his and my dads shaving equipment.
I am self taught in barbering and practiced on brave kids in grade nine my art teacher was very kind about it. I practicing barbering techniques I studied from1940’s guides to men’s grooming.
I got my real start in grade 11 co-op class when I got my placement at Natures’s Salon and scored a summer job that I worked until I attended college. I graduated from Korah high at seventeen and started at Sault College learning to be a licensed hairstylist.
I had to really take a look at myself after six years of being a licensed hairstylist that was still not living sustainability. I had three options. I could either go back to school, marry rich, or open my own shop.” -Paula D’Agostino
For years Paula had walked by the locksmith building and when it went up for sale she seriously contemplated buying it. The same worries going through her mind that hit us all when making lifechanging decisions, but still, she decided to at the very least she should view the place. From the moment Paula first stepped inside she could see exactly where everything would go. Inlove with this building and a perfectly clear picture painted in her mind she bought the building at twenty-two years old and opened her doors to the public only a year and a half later at twenty-three.
With much of her clientele being men in the military, police, cadets, and aviation students that would come to see her while she was practicing in college. Wherever Paula worked over the years her clients would follow, and when she opened Big Guns, sure enough, they were there celebrating with her. Many of her clients have been coming to her for years, some of which used to be shorter than Paula have now grown men who tower over her.
Paula is a very intelligent, down to earth type of person who won’t chat a persons ear off but appreciates interesting conversations. She loves her trade and respects her customers, giving them the freedom to just relax and receive phenomenal hair and beard cuts.
Her customers are loyal to her because of the impressive work she has been doing for years and her wonderful personality.