#afs40 - Then + Now

It's hard to believe Artists Frame Service is turning 40 this year (no midlife crisis here though)! And though our surroundings have certainly changed, our mission from the beginning has been simple and consistent - to bring a higher level of artistry and personalized service to the world of custom framing. 

Right off the bat, the mission resonated with all of you. That's why we thought it would be fun to take a look back at a few "then + now" scenarios over our 40 year history. Because you know the saying - the more things change, the more they stay the same. 

THEN + NOW: WHAT THEY'RE SAYING

 Back in 1986, the  Chicago Tribune  called our founder Jay Goltz the Henry Ford of framing. We were especially noted for bringing computers into the industry, creating a higher level of efficiency, and offering an unparalleled selection of 600 mouldings - many imported directly from Italy. After only 8 years in business, we were the largest framing operation in the Midwest (and today we are the largest in the country).

Back in 1986, the Chicago Tribune called our founder Jay Goltz the Henry Ford of framing. We were especially noted for bringing computers into the industry, creating a higher level of efficiency, and offering an unparalleled selection of 600 mouldings - many imported directly from Italy. After only 8 years in business, we were the largest framing operation in the Midwest (and today we are the largest in the country).

 Today, it's our people that resonate most. We were selected the best framer in Chicago by  Chicago magazine , thanks largely in part to our experienced team of artists and artisans - many of whom have been here for a decade plus. And that vast selection mentioned in 1986? It's only gotten larger. 

Today, it's our people that resonate most. We were selected the best framer in Chicago by Chicago magazine, thanks largely in part to our experienced team of artists and artisans - many of whom have been here for a decade plus. And that vast selection mentioned in 1986? It's only gotten larger. 

THEN + NOW: CLYBOURN TRANSFORMED

 This is hardly the Clybourn Avenue you know of today. Our first showroom at 1919 N. Clybourn was located in what was then mostly an abandoned factory district.

This is hardly the Clybourn Avenue you know of today. Our first showroom at 1919 N. Clybourn was located in what was then mostly an abandoned factory district.

 Fast forward 40 years - we're a bit bigger (and just down the street at 1867 N. Clybourn) and we've got many more neighbors. So much so that in fact Jay now has an honorary street named  Jay Goltz Way  - to thank him for helping to turn Clybourn Corridor into the vibrant shopping district it is today.  We also now have another showroom up in  Highland Park , and are working on a third  River North  location opening this summer! After 40 years, we have no plans of slowing down. 

Fast forward 40 years - we're a bit bigger (and just down the street at 1867 N. Clybourn) and we've got many more neighbors. So much so that in fact Jay now has an honorary street named Jay Goltz Way - to thank him for helping to turn Clybourn Corridor into the vibrant shopping district it is today.

We also now have another showroom up in Highland Park, and are working on a third River North location opening this summer! After 40 years, we have no plans of slowing down. 

THEN + NOW: WHERE THE MAGIC HAPPENS

 We were different from the get-go. From our manufacturing capabilities to the large showroom with multiple framing desks, part of what enabled us to grow successfully was our relentless commitment to artistry, efficiency (we pioneered the one-week turnaround!) and above all - customer satisfaction. 

We were different from the get-go. From our manufacturing capabilities to the large showroom with multiple framing desks, part of what enabled us to grow successfully was our relentless commitment to artistry, efficiency (we pioneered the one-week turnaround!) and above all - customer satisfaction. 

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 Today, we operate a 40,000 square-foot framing facility on the city's west side where every piece is handcrafted to exact specifications. Our showroom on Clybourn has gotten a little fancier too, offering the largest selection of mouldings at every price point, plus  photo frames , gallery frames,  local art ,  digital printing  and more!

Today, we operate a 40,000 square-foot framing facility on the city's west side where every piece is handcrafted to exact specifications. Our showroom on Clybourn has gotten a little fancier too, offering the largest selection of mouldings at every price point, plus photo frames, gallery frames, local art, digital printing and more!

Thanks for taking this trip down memory lane with us. We're honored to have been a part of the Chicago community (and your lives) over the years. Stay tuned for more #afs40 fun over the coming months - including our favorite framing hits of the 80s, 90s and 2000s. 

Jamie EggertComment