While some downtown businesses use Laramie’s history as inspiration for their décor, Dominic “Dom the Barber” Vigil said he took a different approach to creating the space inside 7220 Barbershop.
“I’m young, and I know that has a lot to do with it,” said Vigil, 21. “But I was definitely looking for a modern style.”
Before opening the barbershop Feb. 1 at 215 S. Third St., Vigil said he spent about two months renovating his new location with friends and family while working at The Haircut Co.
“I did a lot of early mornings and late nights,” he said. “But the process was pretty smooth and we did all the interior work ourselves, except for the floor.”
Inside 7220 Barbershop, sparsely decorated, soft gray walls contrasted sharply against black and red leather barber chairs as Vigil buttoned a blue apron around Justice Palmer’s neck.
“(Vigil) does a good job,” said Palmer, 19, explaining Vigil started cutting his hair at The Haircut Co. “This new place is really nice. I like the chairs.”
Although Vigil has only been cutting hair professionally for a couple years, he said he’s been dabbling in the craft for much longer.
“I started cutting cut my own hair when I was about 15, because there was no one I could really trust to do what I wanted,” Vigil explained. “As I started getting better at it, friends started asking who cut my hair, and when I told them I did it myself, they asked me to cut theirs, too.”
Having found his niche, Vigil attended the barbering program at Emily Griffith Technical College in Denver and returned to Laramie to work under Larry Caldwell at The Haircut Co.
“I worked under Larry for about a year-and-a-half, but he retired in November,” he said. “I worked at Larry’s shop after he retired, but I really wanted more space.”
Forever tying Vigil to the hair trade, the word “Barber” sprawled across his forearm in bold, black ink as he ran his clipper along Palmer’s neck.
“I definitely think of myself as someone who isn’t scared to do any type of hair style, but I enjoy doing more modern hairstyles,” Vigil said.
“I consider myself a pretty well-rounded barber.”
Jerrod Woods rents one of the barbershop’s four booth chairs and said he tends to lean toward more traditional hairstyles.
“I’d been cutting hair at Great Clips for about seven years, and I was ready to leave,” said Woods, 42. “Here, I have the freedom to make my own schedule, and I’m pretty much my own boss, which is great.”
About 10 years ago, Woods said he wanted a career change, but didn’t want to attend college. So, he attended the International Academy of Hair Design and has been cutting hair in Laramie ever since.
“I’ve taken cosmetology classes, and I really enjoy doing women’s hair, too,” he said.
After being open a few weeks, Vigil said the business was already starting to pick up, and soon, he would be looking to add more barbers to the roster.
“I wanted to open with just (Woods) and me,” he said. “But I’m hoping to rent out all four booths by the end of the year.”
The barbershop is open 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Mondays-Fridays.
Call 760-6132 or visit www.7220barbershop.genbook.com for more information.