This week we took a few moments to sit down with one of Laramie’s newest businesses, High Country Heirlooms. Chances are that you might not have heard of them yet as the business just opened in January of this year and has been building their wood furniture inventory ever since. More specifically High Country Heirlooms produces custom hope and blanket chests along with a few other products.

The business got it’s spark after three long time friends and entrepreneurs decided to retire from their jobs around the country and converge on Laramie from Alaska to Indiana. We asked them, why Laramie and Ray Marsolais who had visited Laramie in the past told us:

I have lived all over the world but this is the only place I have ever wanted to live. It’s a great place to live and also a business friendly environment.

Marsolais was inspired to start High Country Heirlooms with two of his friends after coming across a neighbor who made custom wooden canoes out of his home that were not available anywhere else. He saw opportunity and wanting to do something similar got in touch with his friend Finley who is now the shop’s mastercraftsman. Eventually the trio decided that their business also needed to produce something rarely found in production in the United States anymore, and this is where the idea for high quality hope & blanket chests came from.

We were told that most furniture similar to what they produce is now cheaply made overseas in locations such as China and that quality can be somewhat of an after-thought. Marsolais said that the whole purpose of a hope chest is to become an heirloom that is passed down through generations, lasting hundreds of years. Unfortunately those made today might not last that long, so High Country Heirlooms is trying to bring back a high quality product much like those made back in the 1700′s, which are for the most part only made by the Amish today. When asked how long it takes to make a chest, Marsolais told us that total time probably comes to a day and a half of work but that the whole process actually takes more like a week and a half.

The great part? This new Laramie business is selling a full featured and customized chest for the base price of what others offered in the US are currently selling for. They let you determine every aspect of what you are buying including the type of wood, number of panels, bottom cutout, etc… High Country Heirlooms even has special chests that they are building out of Wyoming Blue Pine Wood which comes from all of the beetle kill trees but looks teriffic. Of course they also make their chests with a wide variety of other woods. Make sure to look through the gallery above for pictures of their work or stop by their shop most days from 8AM – 4PM at 1104A Skyline Road. You can also get in contact with High Country Heirlooms by calling (307) 460-2542 or by visiting them on facebook.

Make sure to check out all of our stories on new businesses to see the latest and greatest that Laramie has to offer!