A few words from our founder...
In May of 1999 I threw caution to the wind and opened the doors of the first Vintage Frameworks showroom in my renovated garage in Madison, NH, a tiny town 16 miles south of North Conway.
What possessed me to take such a risk, especially in a location so far from the retail center?
Here’s the story. For 5 years I had been a hobby framer using antique and recycled frames. During that time it occurred to me that there might be niche in the market for a custom frame shop that offered these unique, attractive, interesting frames as an additional design option to the new custom frame choices of a traditional frame shop . For this idea to be viable, it was necessary to provide the services that would put these one-of-a-kind frames back into use. This meant mastering the art of resizing the frames so that the proportion of the frame could be tailored to the shape of the artwork. It meant being able to repair and replace broken ornamentation pieces and seamlessly integrate them with the rest of the frame. And it was a must to offer the craft of retouching and refinishing these restored frames to create a final look in keeping with the integrity of the original finish. We did this.
So, this unlikely location worked out. People came from everywhere to see what this ‘framing with vintage frames’ option was all about. They found a shop with the usual wall of new custom frame samples. But they also found racks of vintage frames of all sizes, shapes, styles, and finishes. And if these options weren’t enough, we took them on a trek to the barn out back where there were many more vintage frames. Soon the buzz got around. Traveling to our shop was worth the effort. And Vintage Frameworks took off.
In 2001 when a large volume North Conway custom frame shop closed its doors, we decided to take advantage of this void in the market and opened a second store in North Conway. Once we were sure that this location was fully viable, we consolidated the two shops into the North Conway location. We are now right in the center of North Conway Village next to the very popular Conway Scenic Railway.
We no longer have the barn out back. But we do have an impressive collection of vintage frames from Mission oak, Victorian walnut, and the Ornate gilded multi-tiered frames of the 19th century to the Art Deco and Art Nouveau frames of the early 1900s. And we do have a ‘back room’ also known as our frame-making and frame restoration department. Here there are yet many more vintage frames to choose from.
In our showroom we showcase a variety of decorative and local art prints and cards, White Mountain maps, antique engravings, and postcards, as well as ready-to-hang artwork. We actively seek out hard to find historic artwork and like to add new items to our inventory as often as possible.
Because we do all work on-site and maintain a large inventory of ready-made frames, length molding, and matboard, we are happy to tell our customers that “RUSH JOBS ARE WELCOME!”
Over the years we have earned a reputation for exceptional creativity, design expertise, quality craftsmanship, reasonable pricing, and helpful, friendly service. Our many customers enthusiastically recommend us time and again.
-Louise Ann Perry
Owner/Framesmith – a.k.a “the framelady”