February 2020………………………………………..25th February. After many years I’m so happy to finally get this done… When I went to Barbering college many years ago the standard was SHIT to be fair and when my Dad fell ill just before I was qualified I was chucked in at the deep end and left to run the shop for a few months until he returned to work.. it was sink or swim to be fair… And the college just passed me off on everything including hot towel shaves even though I had never done one which I felt cheated from this… My Dad taught me a Solid Basic Foundation of cutting Hair and that Foundation he taught me is still the CORE to EVERY haircut I do today … But a lot of my knowledge in Hair is self taught through endless hours of research and practice… But when It it comes to shaving even though I have used a cut-throat for many years I did not want to offer full shaves in my barbershop without a proper qualification and learning the right procedure so it was great to finally get it done and to learn from one of the best in the industry Mark Sproston…
December 2019……………………………………..30th December. Wow 2019 will definitely be a year to remember for us we’ve had a blast.. we have met and worked with some amazing people.. We would like to thank everyone who has come through our doors this year and everyone who has liked and shared our posts..When we opened our new shop we kind of expected that we may not be everyones’ cup of Tea with our at times no bullshit approach to things.. Seems theres a lot of people that like something a little stronger than Teaa 😉..This year has really felt like we have the barbershop exactly the way we want it… It’s what we work hard for and appreciate what we have and the love and support we get ♥. We’re excited what 2020 will bring… Our 23rd year in business… Big love Big Mels Family!!
December 2019……………………………………..7th December. Great to have the the leader of the Labour Party in the shop today… And see how he wants to support local independent businesses… Even gave him a trim up ♥
November 2019…………………………………….6th November.As November has become the month of MENS HEALTH AWARENESS…This picture basically sums up the reason I have now become so strict on when me and my barbers take breaks, no matter how busy the shop is and when we call time on the door with a full house… A few years ago I worked myself to the point I was feeling a little broken… Skipping breaks to keep customers happy and working on late to squeeze a few more customers in at the end of the day resulting in me always feeling like shit and by the time I was getting home my kids were already in bed… I made a promise to myself I would no longer work like this and never expect my staff to. Yes we are In business of keeping customers happy but before that the wellbeing of my barbers.. Myself and my family has to always come 1st for me now !! TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!!
September 2019…………………………………..1st September. 22 years in the trade this month.. I have seen the highs and lows in barbering and have had to dig pretty deep at times to make it work.. Yes there is a Barbershop boom at the moment and the standards can be high but that has come with a load of bollox… There is only ever few peoples eyes I really care to be great in so I have no time for some of that shit..
The most important lesson I have learned in this time.. is that its impossible to keep every single person who walks through the door happy.. The most important thing is that me and my barbers are 1st happy that’s when the shops atmosphere is at its best and we do our best work !!
July 2019……………………………………….29th July. The Best thing about being a Barber and having a Barbershop always has and always will be the people who we meet.. It has been a pleasure getting to know Alvar as it turns out his Grandfather was Basque just like ours and his family then moved to Madrid just like ours…To then learn this man is also a awesome artist I had to get him to leave his mark on our shop…And this is what he came up with … Its always “GOOD VIBES ONLY” in here as we always say please leave any bad attitudes outside our shop… And of course we will always be Big Mels family (our DAD) who started the shop as we always respect the road we have travelled to get to where we are now… THANKS Alvar 👐 Big love Big Mel’s family….
April 2019………………………………………3rd April, So it was 1 YEAR ago today we moved to our new Barbershop in Notts Square… We have had the time of our lives and we owe it all to you.. Wow what a successful year it has been … We would like to say a massive Thank you to each and everyone who has come through our door this year.. Also to everyone who has liked and shared our social media posts.. We appreciate it all Big love Big Mel’s #bigmelsfamily
February 2019……………………………..18th February. We find it crazy how many people we see come past our shop and have a selfie pointing up at our sign which is awesome of course …When I came up with…..”NO ONE’S LEAVING UGLY”, It was never about making everyone look like David Beckham, Tom Hardy or some Instagram model .. But about how we see people and how we want them to feel In our shop… We don’t care whether you are Gay.. Straight what colour or religion you are , what your financial status is, weather you have a face full of tattoos and Piercings or you are royalty… You are all from the same Tribe and treated as equal in our shop..The only thing we do Judge on is if you are a nice person and if your a nice person you are welcome and never UGLY in our eyes and this is how we want you to feel leaving our shop… Hence “NO ONE’S LEAVING UGLY” so there you have it. the long winded answer behind our slogan!
December 2018…………………………….29th December. As we close the doors for the Last time of 2018.. WOW what a year it has been… Moving our shop from a backstreet shop on to the High Street was massive… I put my heart ♥ soul and every penny I had into it… And as much as it nearly broke me it has been a huge success… Then to receive an Award for WELSH BARBERSHOP OF THE YEAR… We always thought we play our music too loud and our jokes are bad… Turns out a lot people like that 😉 so the love was much appreciated and we thank everyone who supported us in that.. We would like thank everyone we have worked with this year who have helped us build our shop to what it is . Old Eltons Print Studio Rock n Rolla Emporium Narberth GDaviesArt Tattoos Slick Gorilla Just Print Digital@Alpha Grooming UpperKutz Barbershop and @j17garside
And above all to all our amazing customers who with out you we would just be an empty shop THANK YOU 🙏 ♥ BIG LOVE BIG MELS.
December 2018…………………………22nd December. After the Busiest week in 21 years of business we are finally done for Christmas.. Thank you to everyone who came.. We will be back open the 28th and 29th…. Merry Christmas everyone Big love Big Mel’s 🎅#bigmelsfamily
November 2018………………………25th November…YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE ACADEMIC TO BE CREATIVE .. I didn’t learn much at school a naughty little fucker that maybe so… But that doesn’t mean I wasn’t learning out of school… My Auntie Mari gave me my 1st Job when I was 11 years old and then went to learn my trade with my Dad at 16… Always taught if you want things in life you have to get up and go to work..
BIG MELS BARBERSHOP CARMARTHEN TOWN WELSH BARBERSHOP OF THE YEAR 2018 🏆
November 2018……………………3rd November….MUSIC IS OUR MEDICINE and we sure had a treat today … Its was an absolute pleasure for us to have Tom in the barbershop today .. He really did blow us away and had the whole barbershop captivated with such an awesome sound from such a young man.. With a collection of tunes which brought back so many great memories for me… 👏 👏 👏 👏 We sure hope he comes back and graces us with his presence again… And again to any other solo artists out there who want to come and entertain us please get in touch… 🎶 ♥ #longliverockandroll#bigmelsfamily
October 2018……………………. 24th October….When my Dad handed over the family business he said to me ” SON! Heavy lies the head that wears the crown”. As long as things are done my way I’m happy to take that weight……….. …..Photo by the very talented Jason Banbury Photography a true master of his art….
“This has to be one of our favourite portraits of 2018, featuring Joey Del Toro Sarrionandia, owner of Big Mel’s Barbershop in Carmarthen. It’s always a special feeling when one of our images appears on the big screen at the National Awards, but even more so when the portrait features one of our fab clients
Lorna & Jay xx
www.jasonbanbury.com UK MPA Creative Photographer of the Year 2018/19
October 2018………………………..8th October…. We’ve had an awesome day down at UpperKutz Barbershop today… We have always been very proud of what our good friend Mark has achieved with his shop. . And know ourselves how much a barbershop can be part of a community and we seen that today in this awesome shop.. Also how much people think of Mark, Gemma and his children Seren and Jayden.. So please continue to support this barbershop they have an awesome talented young barber Jack, who will be taking care of business over the next couple of weeks.. And we hope to make another appearance ourselves in the future hopefully cutting beside the big man himself… We would like to say a massive thank you to all who came and also to all those who just donated 🙏 Also thanks to Bridge Caff for supplying some awesome food and Tenby Brewing Co. SandBar for dropping down some refreshments for us… Big love – Big Mel’s!!
June 2018………………………….30th June…Stick a fork in me I’m Done… This week has been right up there with one of the hardest weeks I’ve worked as a barber in 20 years… The heat has been brutal and with a man down the queues have been endless… But our man Oli Evans has been turning the heat up even more with some of his cuts this week… Thank you to all who came and your extra patience with the waiting times.. And apologies to all those we turned away.. please understand we never rush our work to squeeze more in and have to go home some time… Thank you..
May 2018………………………..13th May…We only went and won Welsh Barbershop of the year 2018, thank you for all the love and support… We think we’re no better than anyone else just different… And just having a good time… 👍 …..chuffed to bits cause we didn’t expect it (only went for a night out😜 ) but thank you to our Dad for starting it and everyone who has supported us 💈✂👌
April 2018…………………………1st April…BELIEVE IN YOUR DREAMS… here it is our new Barbershop… But this is not new to me I have been planning this in my head and grafting hard towards this goal for the last 5 years… There are two people who I’d like to massively thank, who without them this would not be possible… My amazing wife Rachel Sarrionandia who pushed me to take the final step with this… And my brother Sam who stands beside me everyday and who has kept the old shop bouncing while I have been working on the new one… I have worked with some awesome people on this painting and decorating by Mike Harries Painter and Decorator our good friend Gavin Evans carpentry who was an absolute pleasure to work with… My cousin Ryan on the plumbing.. Old Eltons Print Studio for our awesome new tshirts… GDaviesArt Tattoos for our now world famous rockabilly skull logo…. And Just Print Digital for the awesome signs…. And last but not least would like Thank all our amazing customers who I look forward to seeing in our new shop… Im always humbled by the love and support we get… Big Thank you Big love… Joey Del Toro Sarrionandia and the rest of the Big Mels Family… We will be opening the doors Tuesday April the 3rd.
March 2018———————–25th March…THE END OF AN ERA… It will be our last week of trading from Albion Arcade for over 20 years next week before our big move to Notts Square Carmarthen … This is our DAD, BIG MEL …He is the one who put the real hard work as the one who built the business from nothing and gave his boys a bright future… We may work in a slightly different manner to when my Dad had the shop but the values and respect that he instilled into us will always remain the same… We Love and we Thank you and are forever grateful Big G ( Dad)… Yes I am a little emotional right now 😉
March 2018———————-I CALL THE SHOTS YOU PAY THE DEVIL…. when I first took over the family business I was trying to keep everyone happy … I soon realised this was an impossible task… As I worked to a point I felt physically ill and came close to throwing the towel in.. a struggle only my wife saw… I had to take a big step back to take a step forward… And realised the key to success was not how much money you’re making but how happy you are doing something you truly love … I knew the only way I would carry on is if I turned up and be 100% the real me.. Playing the music I loved even if it was too loud and offensive to some peoples ears … Doing more of the haircuts I liked at a pace I wanted as I never wanted to compromise the quality of my work to beat a queue but to remain a walk in barbershop as I want no time limit on a haircut … With the support of my bro Sam we made big changes to the way we worked… YES we lost a lot of customers with comments like you’re too loud and you take too long with your haircuts, but had to accept these people were no longer our customers… But above all this we were hearing the praise from the people who did love what we were doing… And we started seeing people traveling miles and miles just to visit our little backstreet barbershop, something we are always humbled by… So we always understand that we are not everyone’s cup of tea… But some peoples shot of whisky… .but we are true to ourselves … So never mind the Bollocks because we’re Big Mel’s Barbershop…and we’re getting Bigger and if you like the sound of our way of doing things come check us out… We’re moving to Notts Square Carmarthen April 3rd…
March 2018———————SIGNS UP!!! It has always been my plan to open a bigger barbershop one day and always thought I’d put my own name above the door… But now the time has finally come. I thought about what our barbershops is about and the road I’ve traveled to get where I am today… My Dad started the business in 1997, I went to work for him in 1998 one day week at the age of 16 before taking out a full apprenticeship at 17… There was no way I would of held down any other job back then I was still smashed from the weekend until Wednesday 😂… Of course I repaid him I turned up to work and put a shift in where I probably wouldn’t of anywhere else… over the years my Dad taught me far more important things than just cutting hair … He taught me how to stand on my own 2 feet and that nothing came easy you have put the work in… 5 years ago he gave me the biggest opportunity of my life he said ” you have worked hard for this son.. You deserve it” and handed me the business… The RESPECT I felt from my Dad then I will carry with me for the rest of my life…. But for me that RESPECT goes both ways… My bro Sam then came to join me in the shop and we have built the business to where it is today … So I always say behind the success of our business we are a FAMILY….. WE ARE BIG MELS FAMILY!!!!!!
February 2018—————-I will miss this little shop where it all started when we move in APRIL… we have been opening these doors for nearly 21 years, I have spent more time in this shop than anywhere else in my life, now that’s a crazy thought… I remember me, my Mum and Dad painting the shop ready for opening day… Man we have had some good times in here and always been grateful I’ve got to work with my Dad and bro all these years…. Of course we have clashed heads a few times what family doesn’t right… And it hasn’t always been easy too, we have all had to dig deep at times to keep the business alive…. There have also been a few times I’ve been close to throwing in the towel with it all but had my good wife Rachel Sarrionandia to pick me back up when I’ve fallen down and push me to follow my dream… That’s the real hard work no one sees .. And that’s what this next BARBERSHOP is all about a Dream I’ve had in my head for many years now …not just the look of the place but the feel of the place … Dream Big, Work Hard … BIG MELS IS GETTING BIGGER COMING TO NOTTS SQUARE CARMARTHEN APRIL….
January 2018—————–Well what can I say, our man Mark The Heavyweight will be leaving us next week to start his own shop in Tenby… We are sad but at the same time we are proud… We love him like a brother.. We drink together laugh together learn together and have always had each others back …. And we will continue to do so just in different shops… We knew this man has always had his own dream and we 100% support that… But to us he will always be Big Mel’s Family…… Good luck Mi Amigo………..
December 2017————Wow 2017 has been an amazing year for us at Big Mels Barbershop Our 20th year in business … We would like to say a massive thank you to every single person who has stepped through our door because without you we would just be an empty shop… We have met some amazing people and have got to work with some awesome people and local talents who have helped us build our brand…. @gdaviesart @wethedee @jackdrawsthingsco @oldeltons @merchasylum @alphagroominguk who we hope to continue to do some future projects with…
We Have Got Some Big Plans for this next year, so watch out 2018 because we’re coming for ya!! #bigmelsbarbershop #carmarthen #barbershop #wales #barbers #barberlife #worldbarbershops #reuzeluk #wethedee #garethdaviestattoo #barbershops #ukbarbers #barberconnect #biglove #bigthings #alphagrooming #2017 #bigmelsfamily #noonesleavingugly @reuzeluk