In 2020, Aimee and Mike Gormley were looking for a new challenge.
They both ran successful businesses in Driggs, but as more and more people moved to Teton Valley, they saw an opportunity.
“We figured all these new people would need to decorate their homes,” Aimee says.
So, they opened Mountain Home Treasures, a gift store, art gallery, and home décor shop in Driggs that caters to newcomers, but also has plenty to offer longtime residents and visitors.
The store is a shared project for the couple, who each bring something unique to the effort. Mike, the owner of Custom Chinking, a log home restoration business, is the one who hangs the artwork, moves the furniture, and keeps things working. Aimee exudes warmth and enthusiasm. She’s the face of the store and loves interacting with customers.
“I think retail is fun,” says Aimee. “It’s exciting to have people come back in and say it looks great. It really makes me happy when repeat customers stop by just to see what’s new.”
Mike is most excited about the art they carry in the shop. He considers his log work to be a form of art and enjoys working with other artists to bring their creations to Mountain Home Treasures.
“I’ve had lots of favorite things in the shop,” Mike says. “I’ve threatened to take them home with me, but then they get sold, so I have to find a new favorite.”
The artwork in Mountain Home Treasures ranges from bold paintings of colorful geometric animals by Erik Abel of Abel Arts and stunning photographs of the Teton Range by Howie Garber to hand-painted saw blades by Teresa Conbeer. Teresa’s story is particularly moving to the Gormleys. Teresa was paralyzed in an accident on her family farm in New York and came to Teton Valley to work with a specialized therapist. While here, she met the love of her life and was married in early March.
The Gormleys enjoy having that kind of personal connection with the artists they feature. They also like to provide a place for regional artists to sell their work.
“We’re different than a lot of shops,” Mike says. “We don’t have four or five of the same thing — most of what we carry is one of a kind.”
“When something sells,” Aimee adds, “we have to rearrange the walls to fill the space. The shop never looks exactly the same.”
The Gormleys say Mountain Home Treasures is evolving as they learn about the business, their customers, and what sells — all of which have been affected by the pandemic. Aimee says they’ve moved away from carrying a lot of furniture in the shop, although she is happy to help people look for a special piece, and she does like to have a few pieces — a sofa, as well as several dressers and tables, including handmade, burl wood tables from an Idaho artist — on display.
After two years in business, the Gormleys have come to realize that what their customers really want is a place to buy nice gifts, art, keepsakes, and unique Teton Valley souvenirs.
“I try to be conscious of price. I don’t want someone to walk in and not be able to afford anything in the store, so we have small gift items as well as high-end art,” says Aimee.