What Makes Your Trenton Business So Special?

Trenton Patch caught up with the owner of The Framery, Larry Pettinga, to find out how he's managed to stay in business for over 35 years.

Each week Trenton Patch editor Nate Stemen will be visiting local business owners to find out what makes their business so special.

This week Nate visited in Trenton's Downtown district.

What started as a hobby for Larry Pettinga, owner of The Framery, became a life-long commitment to providing high-quality frames for anything from a photo of Fido to a Picasso.

The Framery has been in Trenton's Downtown district through the thick times and the lean times for the last 36 years.

"It's a very specialized market," Pettinga said. "We probably only deal with about ten percent of the public...it's the custom framing part of our business that keeps us going."

Pettinga said people bring in things that are very personal and he finds the perfect frame to match the item's importance and the surrounding items in the room.

Trenton Patch editor Nate Stemen asked Pettinga five questions about what makes his business so special. These are the questions followed by Pettinga's responses:

When did you open?

"August 1976. I started framing as a hobby. I would frame things for family members, and it eventually lead to opening a business."

What's your most unique item or quality?

"We have gold leaf moldings that run $35 per foot."

What sets you apart from other businesses?

"We are a niche market. We're a little more custom than them (big box stores). They have a limited amount of product. We have 4000 frames and they have 150. They have 100 mats and we have 1000."

What's so great about doing business in Trenton?

"It's been a great city. It's a small town. I've lived here and I lived on Grosse Ile, and I came back to Trenton. I like it here. It's nice and easy-going.

"People that come in here are always very nice. Most of them know they are having something special done and they're in a good mood."

What don't people know about your business?

"Everybody perceives that big box stores are cheap and that's not true. Nobody works at half price.

"We are priced very competitively in the market. We offer sales a few times per year and we are very competitive without giving big discounts."

Are you a local business owner? Comment in this article or email Nate Stemen directly at natestemen@patch.com and we will come and visit you to ask you, "What Makes Your Trenton Business So Special?"

Nate Stemen April 26, 2012 at 01:17 AM
What businesses would you like to learn more about? Tell us in the comments!
Mariah Gillespie April 26, 2012 at 11:54 AM
Certified Alarm. It's special because it's the same age as his youngest (and favorite, obviously) daughter! Family owned and operated and celebrating 25 years THIS year :-)
Nate Stemen April 26, 2012 at 02:13 PM
That sounds like the perfect place, Mariah. I will give Dan a call next week. Thanks for the tip!


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