PART III: THE BARBERS

We opened the doors to the shop on November 8, 2016 and we found our groove immediately. Everything felt natural and we were back in business. The flow of our customers was steady, our family and friends always came through and now we just needed to secure our chairs with some of the most talented barbers in the lower mainland. So we reached out to a select few, which some of you are very familiar with, as they’ve become a vital part of the WSDMCLUB team. We asked them a few questions about their humble beginnings so let’s get right to it. 

Here are our barbers, our bros, of WSDMCLUB..

STATE YOUR NAME.
Akoni Jordan Ilagan (@akonii)

WHERE YOU FROM?
Bellingham Washington/Burnaby

HOW OLD ARE YOU?
24

HOW DID YOU GET INTO CUTTING HAIR?
Back in the 8th grade I would cut my own hair with a pair of Conairs my mom got for me. My friends noticed and started asking me for basic cuts. This began as just a chill thing to do, then eventually the cut styles and requests became more specific and more and more people started to ask for cuts. Forcing me to figure it out on the go, mistakes left and right, I learned how to adapt to each type of hair by becoming more of a public barber. Later after graduation I moved to Canada allowing my clientele and vision to flourish from there. 

HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT WSDMCLUB?
Mutual friends and clients got me to connect with Marv! 

WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE PART ABOUT WORKING AT THE SHOP?
My favourite part of WSDM is the team dynamics and the culture it creates.

STATE YOUR NAME.
Alfred Camales aka Red (@acamales)

WHERE YOU FROM?
Currently residing in Surrey, BC

HOW OLD ARE YOU?
22

HOW DID YOU GET INTO CUTTING HAIR?
Started cutting my own hair for fun and it became a hobby, which later turned into a career path and lifestyle.

HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT WSDMCLUB?
Marvin Soriano was one of the first barbers I looked up to, so I found out about WSDM through him.

WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE PART ABOUT WORKING AT THE SHOP?
It would have to be that it doesn't feel like work at all and that everyone there really pushes each other to become a better version of themselves.

STATE YOUR NAME.
Zoilo Mendoza (@zoilomndza)

WHERE YOU FROM?
I'm from Surrey, BC 

HOW OLD ARE YOU?
23 

HOW DID YOU GET INTO CUTTING HAIR?
We were broke high school kids with long ass hairs. And my mom had old Vidal Sassoon clippers. I was just brave enough to pick it up and use it

HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT WSDMCLUB?
Through Marvin! When I met him at the first London School Barber Battle in Vancouver. 

WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE PART ABOUT WORKING AT THE SHOP?
The new followers I get on Instagram and all the free loot, lol… it's the whole experience man. I'm blessed to be a part of a talented group of people who share the same vision. I don't consider WSDM as work, It's more of a creative space where I learn from everyone around me and from the people that sit in my chair. At its simplest, i'm at peace with doing what I am most passionate about.

STATE YOUR NAME.
My name is Reign Cruz (@thereigncruz)

WHERE YOU FROM?
Born in Vancouver and raised in Surrey.

HOW OLD ARE YOU?
I'm 18 but I feel 12 and look 15

HOW DID YOU GET INTO CUTTING HAIR?
I got into hair and barbering because fashion and trending styles always appealed to me. Hairstyles were constantly changing and I'd always try to keep up with them.  I dedicated my senior year to barbering and homeschooled so I could work full-time at a barbershop. My purpose in this craft is to get better and to inspire others through my work. 

HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT WSDMCLUB?
I heard about WSDM Club through Instagram, back when Marvin still was running things at home. I jumped on the opportunity when I heard WSDM Club opened up shop and was bringing in people to form their team. I remember being really nervous in the beginning but the fact that i got to work under the person that inspired me to be in this industry, was something i knew i had to have. After some conversations, tears, and a couple DMS, the rest was history. Fast forward to now, I know I have already improved so much with my skills and I have a new fam at WSDMCLUB that I am proud to be apart of. It's great to be around greatness. For real.

WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE PART ABOUT WORKING AT THE SHOP?
Growing up I was always the eldest, the eldest sibling of 6 and the eldest cousin of 12. At WSDMCLUB, i am the youngest one here. I always wanted an older brother and now I have all the boys at WSDM. I look up to each of them in a different way. #KUYAS

STATE YOUR NAME.
Michael Aranzaso (@mikearanzaso)

WHERE YOU FROM?
BornxRaised in Vancouver

HOW OLD ARE YOU?
22 years of age

HOW DID YOU GET INTO CUTTING HAIR?
I got into cutting hair because I was sick and tired of working job to jobs I didn't enjoy and I knew I had a creative mindset, I just didn't know where to apply it. Little did I know this career has been in front of me all my life. Marvin Soriano cut me back in high school and my bestfriend Akoni Ilagan has been cutting me ever since after high school.

HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT WSDMCLUB?
I heard about WSDM when Marv was still in high school

WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE PART ABOUT WORKING AT THE SHOP?
My favourite part of being apart of WSDM is the culture and environment it has created for me.

STATE YOUR NAME.
Patrick Ramos (@patrvmos)

WHERE YOU FROM?
Vancouver BC

HOW OLD ARE YOU?
19 years old

HOW DID YOU GET INTO CUTTING HAIR?
Got into cutting hair while I was in high school. Started off with my boy Eljo Gloria teaching me a few things to cutting hair.  He ended up quitting and I started to cut his clients and my boys. At first barbering was just a hobby for me, but many years passed by and I met and were inspired by many people. These people include Julius Caesar, Scott Ramos, Marvin Soriano, and especially John Fallesgon. These guys, along with many others, inspired me to take my hobby and make it into my passion. 

HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT WSDMCLUB?
I've known about WSDM since I was in Elementary School. I remember first knowing about WSDM guys when they played a ball game at St. Pats High School against ND. I eventually found out that these guys came up with WSDM Club which I found so sick. I always thought of these guys as celebrities and was intimidated every time I see them. Ever since I was a kid I always wanted to be a part of the club and It's so surreal that I'm working in this barbershop.

WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE PART ABOUT WORKING AT THE SHOP?
Everything about the shop is perfect. The environment, the vibe, the clients, and the staff. The shop really matches my style, which is "simple but loud". But, the biggest thing is that although it is a barbershop, it feels like more of a club. Friends just come through to hang out, and getting a cut is just an added bonus

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Last but not least, we want to give a special shoutout to our boy who we're always repping and who's always in our hearts, John Fallesgon. 

From Marvin..

"Throughout my time as a barber, I've been lucky enough to encounter so many individuals, and it's from barbering that I've been able to be introduced to so many. I've always advocated anyone who's trying to practice their passion, whatever it is. I've learned to embrace the mentor role and it's through my experience in barbering that I'm able to express this knowledge to others. 

John was the first kid who wanted to learn barbering from me. A dude I met in high school, one year younger than me,  I remember playing ball with him and him shooting that high arcing shot that seemed to always go in. From the getgo he was always down to kick it and interested about aspects of my life, from barbering to chilling with the homies. He was the only kid at his age that took up barbering and he was the only kid, at the time, that wanted to learn from me. 

That relationship I was able to build with him is now tattooed all over my life and has become a concrete foundation to not only how I view barbering, but how I view life. John was to be the first barber in my shop but unfortunately passed away when we were close to opening up. His life has moved on but his presence will always be the same with me, and will be in every barber that I will mentor throughout my life."

To John - we here now.