It would be easy to mistake the new store that’s opened up next to Barton Insurance on Broadway for an antique shop, but you’d be wrong. If you were looking for a haircut and a shave you’d have more luck than searching for a vintage sideboard, because in fact it’s a barbershop.
Candais Smith has been hair dressing and barbering since she was 16, but this is the first barber shop of her own. Smith has been in business for herself before, though. She was a travelling barber, the Mobile Mountain hair Woman, for the last few years in the Kootenays, and she would travel to farms and families out of town with her dog to cut hair (no, I don’t think her dog cuts hair). It was a definite change from her work at a couple of high-end salons in Calgary and even her year at Enso in Nelson, but it was not in the city, which was important to Smith.
“City life is not for me,” she said. And neither is the desert. Smith spent some time in Las Vegas in July and that was more than enough. She is happy to be in the heart of the mountains.
Now that she’s set up in Nakusp, she’s very happy. With family settled out near Fauquier, Smith is finally free to cut hair in her own shop, and build gardens and greenhouses out on the family property.
“I chose Nakusp to open my business and live mainly because I love the direction the community is going in,” she told the Arrow Lakes News, with a focus on sustainability and having a locally-grown food box as two of the attractive elements for her. “I also feel I need to live by mountains and lakes to feel ‘at home.’”
Being able to grow her own food and possibly food for others is another big reason Smith is here, who appreciates the self-sufficient and community-oriented attitude in Nakusp. She is keen not only to cut hair but get involved with what’s happening in town and has lots of enthusiasm about Nakuspians.
“People in this town are really friendly,” she said. “Lots of people are coming in and welcoming us to the community.”