Having Matt join the team has been a massive leap forward for Areté. He brings a new dynamic to the barbershop and we’re having so much fun getting to know so many new faces. We sat down for a drink with Matt to get inside his mind and find out a bit more about his views on hair and fashion. So here they are.
How long have you been doing hair?
It’s been just over 2 years now since I started my first barbering job. I trained at SB academy in Sunderland to gain my qualification. Prior to this I was working in a barbers for free once a week to gain as much knowledge and experience as I could while having a full time job. I’ve come into the industry quite late in the grand scheme of things but I feel I’ve put myself out there which in turn has allowed me to gain the vital knowledge and skills getting me to where I am today.
How would you describe your work?
I like to work with a combination of clean, contemporary looks and worn in textured looks. Sharp tapers on longer scissor cut hair is always something I am a fan of. I tend to point cut instead of blunt cut to create a haircut that looks very natural. I suppose taking influence from guitar based bands throughout different decades has lead me to want to create effortless looks that a client is able to easily recreate themselves.
Do you have a favourite fashion brand?
Various fashion brands is where I get a lot of inspiration from, they help dictate trends and they always push styling to its boundaries. A brand that is always close to my heart is Fred Perry, it’s not something I wear much of now however growing up throughout my teens and early 20’s it was. They intertwined my love for music and the culture that came with that. The mix between sport and music always stood out for me. However as I grew up my tastes changed and now I’m a big fan of plain staple wardrobe items, brands such as Norse Project and Universal Works always create hard wearing clothing that I love. But sometimes you can’t beat picking up some key pieces from Zara.
What or who inspires you creatively?
In the hair industry, a few names stand out to me. Charlie Cullen and Kevin Luchman both create styles that appeal to me, wearable grown out looks. Both seem to take influence from music and fashion throughout the decades. As I imagine is the case for a lot of people, music is probably one of my biggest inspirations. I love looking through images of artists and bands over the past 40 plus years to give myself ideas of something I’d want to create. You can see how trends now days are recycled trends from the past just with a modern twist. At the moment the 90’s grunge influence is huge with many people taking inspiration from the likes of Kurt Cobain.
How do you spend your time outside of doing hair?
Like most people, I try to stay active. Boxing has been something I’ve been doing on and off over the past 5 years, it’s a great way to stay in shape and let off steam, but it gives me an aim with training. Football is a big big deal to me! Playing, watching or reading about football, I could talk about it without stopping to breath. I generally like to get outdoors and do a lot of walking, I feel it clears the head and enables me to see the British countryside. Cooking always relaxes me, I love cooking and eating Mediterranean food and drink!
What have you learned so far since joining Areté?
It has got to be Client satisfaction. Just being within the Areté environment has showed me how much more can be done to ensure the experience for the client exceeds expectations. It’s difficult not to learn anything when working besides Josh and Matt on a daily basis. Both have passions in different areas that I am able to learn from, whether that is cutting and styling skills or client satisfaction. Delving into the world of additional treatments has been interesting, learning about skin care routines has actually resonated with a lot of my customers who want to find out how they could improve their skin care routines or start from scratch.
How have your clients responded to being a guest at Areté?
I’ve been overwhelmed by the responses from my guests about Areté. The open space that it is set in seems to really resonate with everyone who has come in to see me here. I can see them becoming invested with the longer appointment times and the additional services that I now offer. For me it gives me more time to connect with anyone who comes and sits in my chair, it’s a relaxed atmosphere for not only my guests but for myself.
Thanks Matt and welcome to the team.