Golden Business Spotlight: Del’s Tonsorial Parlor
Story and Photography by Povy Kendal Atchison – povy.com
“We laughed, and we cried after not seeing each other in almost a year”, says Barb Robie, owner of Del’s Tonsorial Parlor. “I hadn’t seen many of my clients because they were cutting their own hair during the worst of COVID. I was so excited to see them. One of them even brought in several hand-made masks his wife had made for me. He had been waiting to come in until he had all of his shots.”
Barb, who has been cutting hair since 1996, says Del’s is a family-oriented business. “I have given some of my clients their very first haircut, and now they are in college.”
Del Miller opened Del’s Tonsorial Parlor in 1959 as a barber shop. Later, he added a beauty section. Barb’s father bought the shop in 1997, and she got her start there. Del’s has been a constant in downtown Golden, offering services to both men and women. “It’s a wonderful community with all the festivals, the other merchants are really nice, and we have a great relationship with the landlord,” she says.
Tonsorial is a Latin word for cutting hair with scissors and comb. Traditionally, tonsorial parlors performed medical services, such as blood-letting, along with their haircuts and shaves. Del’s doesn’t offer blood-letting, and instead features cuts, shaves, colors, perms, nails, and facial waxing.
Barb remodeled the shop during the pandemic but kept the original 1959 wooden booths, with their built-in vacuum cleaners, and chrome barber chairs, each with its own built-in ashtray. Some 70 pct. of her clientele is back.
“The tips are good since COVID. My customers are caring and thoughtful people and want to see us keep going.” When asked about any new trends since COVID Barb said, “Oh yeah, mullets are coming back. We are getting lots of requests for mullets!”
Del’s Tonsorial Parlor
1210 Washington Ave., Golden, CO