by Linda Kraan

In the last edition, I mentioned there were a couple new stores opening up, on Barton Street, between Wentworth and Victoria. I have been following one particular building with deep interest…..
First I noticed paper on the windows, a good sign that someone is moving in. Then I saw the plants arriving, on the sidewalk. Actually lovely lush plants, I briefly commented on how nice they look, only to be told that the plants had been dug up from his (the new owner) former garden, now that is love.
As the weeks rolled by, I continued to keep an eye on this business not sure what it was going to be, I thought perhaps a barbers, when I saw the sign go up. Then the paper came off the windows, and I had a peek inside for the first time. Wow! When I saw how the place had been restored and, artistically arranged. I couldn’t resist walking inside and asking if I could meet the owner and have a good look round.

Alex greeted me at the door, a very soft spoken but extremely courteous and warm young man. He told me that this is a new hair salon, wherein he is, not only the nephew of the owner, but also an apprentice. Then I met Darryl, the owner and hair stylist extraordinaire.

I know this write up will not do Darryl justice, but I will try and describe him to you. He is friendly and calm, as you would expect a hair stylist to be, but he is so much more. He is also full of creative expression, more than any other stylist I have ever met. He exudes a confidence that I rarely find in a person. He is not really what I would call flamboyant, but more carefree in attitude. He does not remind me of anyone else I know, he is unique.

We talked for a while, he told me how long he had been in Hamilton, not long apparently, as he had recently moved back from a long stint in Nashville. He does have family in Hamilton, as he was raised here as a young boy.

His Salon has been beautifully created, his artistic flare shows everywhere from the floor to the ceiling. There is so much to look at; you certainly will not need a book when you come to visit him.
I often wonder how one person can be so artistic, I only wish I had a third of his talent. There is richness yet a calmness, to how he has decorated his Salon. Being unable to fully describe what he has accomplished, I’d say that two of my favorite eras have been showcased together, at least for me. I am a great fan of the Roaring 20s and the more modern Wild West. I apologize to Darryl if this was not his intention, but I actually believe you derive from your surroundings what you will. I love the mirrors, the floral arrangements, the dividers/screens (I can visualize Can Can dancers changing behind them). The ornate furniture, stained glass and light fixtures are truly out of this world. I have the feeling, that, perhaps Princess Grace and Marilyn Munroe were former clients of his, I see bits of their era within the rooms. In the back room, where he has his sink, there is a massive, stone (I think) bird bath, which Darryl lugged all the way from his former home in Nashville. But it’s not just a bird bath; it’s a work of art, a monumental structure. His creativity is evident in this piece of art, cum garden structure. Oh and there is a Deer’s head on the wall!!
Two days after I visited Darryl, I was checking his on line reviews, and I noticed a friend of mine, we had not seen each other since the pandemic began. She was looking radiant, amazing, young and vibrant. She was surrounded by Darryl and Alex, so I promptly contacted her. In the past couple years she had gone through cancer treatment, and she reported feeling down in the dumps, as her hair had not grown back as luscious as before the treatment. She had heard about Darryl, made an appointment and her photo was the outcome. Inspired, I had to make a professional visit myself. He asked me what I had in mind, and I simply said “work your magic on me” and he did. Two hours after, I felt like I was one of those Can Can dancers (the ones in my mind); I literally danced all the way home.

All I can say is Thank you to Darryl for choosing Barton Street, to buy a building and open up his Hair Salon. Oh I should actually say a huge thank you to his real estate agent, for showing him Barton Street, and introducing him to the growth and potential of his surroundings. And Thank you Darryl, for brightening our sidewalks with plants, lovingly transplanted from your former garden.

On behalf of all our Barton street community, I wish you all the best in your new location. And on a personal note, I hope you stay here for many years to come. You can find Darryl on google search, or via his facebook page Darryl Allen Salon – Hair Salon in Hamilton (

Darryl Allen Salon. 355 Barton Street East (between the Motel Restaurant & Helping Hands). (905) 945-2200

Interestingly enough, Darryl’s Salon, backs on to the butcher shop of Jamie Waldron, featured in the last edition. Darryl has two parking spaces, at the back of his store on the alley. He is also on the #2 Barton Bus route, and there are plenty of parking meters on Barton Street, outside his salon.