When the boys of V76 get together, good—and stylish—things happen.
Business is booming at the only barbershop in Walla Walla, WA, and KC Pratt, Capital Barber Shop's seasoned head barber and owner, is having a blast. Six days a week, Pratt opens his massive shop doors and invites the small town in to listen to some jazz, shop for manly gifts (think flasks and fedoras) and sit down for their first straight-razor shave.
Tell us about your start in the industry and your career path to Capital Barber Shop.
When I was younger, I used to cut all of my friends’ hair—it just came naturally to me. I went to barber school in Southern California in 1985, and then worked in shops around that area for three years before moving to Seattle. Eventually, a shop went up for sale and I bought it. I had that shop for nine years, but at the time, my family was young and we wanted to live in a more rural community, which meant selling the shop. We moved to Royal City, WA, and I was the town barber in that community for 19 years. My shop in Royal City—K.C.’s Barber Shop—is still open, and I currently lease out the chairs. Finally, I relocated 100 miles south to Walla Walla, WA, where I am today.
What drew you to the town of Walla Walla?
Walla Walla is the new Sonoma—it’s wine country out here with 200 tasting rooms in the region. Before I moved, I had been visiting for several years to attend wine events, and I noticed they didn’t have a barbershop downtown. My dream was to open a barbershop in this cool community. I was nervous that someone was going to beat me to it, but luckily, no one did and business has been unbelievable since we opened in March. Most mornings we have jazz playing and guys coming in for straight-razor shaves. By 2p.m., when the kids start coming in from school, we kick it up a notch with Foo Fighters.
Does Capital Barber offer more than cuts, styles and shaves?
We have a large retail area with men’s gift items—it’s what sets us apart. We carry flasks, fedoras, bow ties, wallets and more.
Why do you think there has been a resurgence of barbershops around the country?
People are trying to get back to old school and part of that is identifying with barbering roots. It’s been trending for a while
What’s popular right now in Walla Walla?
Lately I’ve been doing modern comb-overs with shaved sides. It’s the hot hair style in our community right now. But the customer should always do what’s right for him. A good barber will put his or her own flair on it.
What is one grooming tip that every guy should live by?
Take care of nose hair, ear hair and eyebrows. I also suggest a straight-razor shave to clean up the neck after a cut. Many of the men here never had a straight-razor shave before Capital Barber opened. I use a straight-razor on all my guys after a cut.
Any rules when it comes to taming facial hair?
Use Pre & Post Detailing Shave Oil to hydrate and protect your skin.
What V76 products should be in every guy’s grooming arsenal?
Control Balm Strong Hold—add it to damp hair for texture and hold. I also love the Bar Soap. It looks and feels great.