A cut above …

Cupar is home to so many thriving businesses: folk are surprised to discover that we have 379 on our Blog listings. And we’re delighted to see new businesses starting up who have chosen to invest in the town and its future. One of the latest is Yasper, a new barbershop on Bonnygate. We caught up with the man behind the chair to discover more …

James Calderwood is a “big fan of anything creative“. He’s always collaborating with others and, when he’s not cutting hair, you’re more than likely find him out and about, walking his dog and taking photos. The images he’s started to capture at Yasper are testament to his photographic skills – superb shots capturing his work on satisfied customers … and more …

James was born in Germany and moved to this neck o’ the woods as his Dad was in the Forces. James is happy that his Dad’s service didn’t take him away from Fife: “Luckily we didn’t have to move again and I’m glad to have lived here for over 20 years now.

Yasper is James’ barber shop. He opened in February of this year (2019) and has gone from strength to strength.

His work as a barber began more by luck than judgement. James explains: “I applied for a receptionist position at a local salon” but he soon found that the receptionist work was not where his passion lay. He says: “I think I lasted about a month before I wanted to get away from the desk!” His eye had been caught by watching the stylists at work: “That sold it to me” says James.

Watching those first colleagues at work – seeing them progress day by day, entering competitions – that was James’ “first spark“. Then he followed his creative side. He delved into the hairdressing and barbering corners of Instagram. The result? “It just blew my mind what people were able to do with hair.

We asked James what he sees as his greatest achievement: “My biggest personal achievement would definitely be sticking at my apprenticeship and becoming fully qualified. Before that I had no idea what I wanted to do and I feared just working odd jobs forever.” And that hard work and dedication to his profession has paid off. “On a business level, the feedback I get from guests is incredible. I really put 100% into every day and every cut.” And James sees his work as a continuing learning and development experience: “I try to always improve. Having close to 200 5 star reviews makes it all worth it for me.

James has plans to expand his business saying: “Currently, it is just myself working in the shop. However I am on the hunt for someone to join and make their mark on the Cupar barber scene.” So if that someone is you, get in touch with James! His barber shop does appointments and walk-ins where available. James explains: “This saves waiting times and makes the visit quick and relaxed for guests. You save time and you’re not rolling a dice wondering who you’re going to get.

As with all our business profile interviews, we asked what James would recommend to someone visiting Cupar for the first time – or for the first time in a long time. James says: “If you’re here for the first time, I highly recommend checking out The Press for some seriously good food, Maisie and Mac for their selection of work from local artists and Mirrey Fine Art for her amazing work … a piece of which is on the wall in the shop.” James adds: “Have a look around the charity shops and the Castle Furniture Project. There are hidden gems everywhere.” And returning to his love of walking, he says: “Get your boots on and explore! There are so many amazing walks and hills nearby.

Need more?

You’ll find Yasper at 5 Bonnygate. James’ shop is on Facebook and Instagram.
Pop in or call on 07476 138859.


Thanks for reading!