Entrepreneur, 19, launches new clothes line alongside barbers
- Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown
Expanding your hairdressers into a clothing line might seem like a novel idea for growth.
However for 19-year-old entrepreneur Oli Norman, it is a natural progression - as he is helping people to look their best, in dress and in hairstyle.
Oli, who previously had an apprenticeship at Mr Barbers, opened On Point Barbers in Elmswell last year during the coronavirus crisis.
"I was working at Mr Barbers in Bury St Edmunds, and I have always said I wanted my own shop," he said.
"I didn't expect it to happen when I was so young, but it just felt like the right time.
"I saw the unit for let and I thought I would give it a go. The first lockdown gave me time to actually do it up."
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His new clothes line is also called On Point, with Oli saying: "I have always wanted to do something relating to fashion and clothing and I wanted it to link with the barbers.
"I started it up because I wanted to try and make a bit of money in the lockdown.
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"I quite like the social media side of it and promoting it. I find that quite fun.
"It gets the name out there and it is going really well at the moment, it is going really well at the moment and hopefully it does get bigger.
"I would to try and get my clothes into shops it obviously takes time building it up, but it is something I would like to do in the future."
While the doors to his barber shop have been shut, Oli has got himself a job at Thurston Co-Op to help keep the money coming in.
He has spent his free time updating the shop, so he is able to provide more services when non-essential retail is allowed to open from April 12.
Oli already has 500 appointments booked in for his post-lockdown reopening.
"I am so excited to be reopening," he said. "It has been too long without cutting hair.
"It has been great with how much support we have had.
"Since we opened up the booking system, we have had over 490 bookings in less than four days which is amazing and we are fully booked for about two and a half weeks which is amazing.
"We have put in an extra unit to keep up with the demand and sinks, we have been doing it up to make it look how I really wanted it to."
Global brand Black Label Grooming is also sponsoring the shop, in return for him selling their products in store.
"Since I opened it has been absolutely mad and I didn't quite expect it to be that busy," Oli said.
"I would like to expand it in the future and hopefully get a few shops. It is going really well as it is at the moment but hopefully we will be able to open up in different villages."
More information about Oli's clothing line and barbers can be found on his website.