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Shop Talk

March 17, 2012

Shop Talk: Hollywood Barber

Hollywood Barber 20 Water St., Oneonta Owners: Sandy VanDusen and Margaret Lee Established: 1930s Employees: 2

Shop Talk is a weekly column featuring locally owned and operated businesses. This week, we talk to Sandie VanDusen and Margaret Lee, owners of Hollywood Barber in Oneonta.

How long have you lived in the area?

ML: I grew up in Delaware County, Bovina. I live in Hartwick now.

SV: I grew up in Laurens. I raised my boys here. I live in the West End.

Tell me about your business:

ML: A full service barber shop. Just for men.

SV: If we can help it.

ML: We do do a few women, but mostly men.

SV: It's just walk in. First-come, first-served. You don't need to make an appointment, because men hate appointments. They like to just walk in and sit down. ... We get a lot of college kids, both Hartwick and SUNY Oneonta. A lot of teachers, a lot of professors. A lot of families. Like this one (pointing to a black-and-white photograph on the wall of a little boy getting his hair cut and his mother watching). He's a dad now of two boys that he brings in all the time. That's fun, seeing the different generations. His family's been coming here for a long time, and a lot of families are like that.

Describe a typical day in your business:

SV: We get to work, and there's someone waiting at the door at 8 a.m., usually. And then it just starts from there. Sometimes it's cut all day. Sometimes you get to sit down for a little bit, and then there will be cuts. We were busy this morning, and now it's kind of quiet.

How did you get started in this line of work?

SV: I've always done hair. Since I was little, I used to play with my doll's hair, my aunt's hair, my sister's hair. When it was time for proms, it was me doing everyone's hair.

ML: I took it in school, and liked it, and followed up.

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