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Opinions Wanted What would your shop look like w/o LJ?

Discussion in 'The Grumble' started by PicturedFramer, May 19, 2009.

  1. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    Like I said, don't buy from them.

    The local suppliers here suck big time. If I had to rely totally on local suppliers today, I would stop doing custom work.

    All but one of them have a retail side. And they will sell to photographers and artist.
  2. couture's gallery

    couture's gallery PFG, Picture Framing God

    we have 2 major suppliers..LJ and AMPF, primarily because both deliver to us out here in the boonies...we use 5 other suppliers for chops..without LJ about half of my samples would be gone and my supplies would be coming in UPS...of course AMPF has supplies also, but I prefer LJ as they have always come thru for us and the rep is great....IF some other supplier would deliver to us out here off the beaten path we would definely sell more of thier moulding as I mostly buy box and length .
  3. mik

    mik SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    A lot of good posts...both pro and con. My shop...it would look just like it does now. Twenty six years ago, I bought from Larson and from Juhl. When the two got married I quit using them as my "local" as in 110 mile away distributors could service me with high quality but much lower priced mouldings, discounts on glass, matboards and footage and at least once a week free delivery without having to "sell my soul" to LJ. I always said that if a supplier works for you and with you, use them. If not, find someone else to use. I also have a personal dislike of walking into a frame shop and all the moulding look same. Differences is what makes us who we are.
  4. Tigerframes

    Tigerframes Grumbler in Training

    I have a friend who is a home based framer here in a suburb of Kansas City, (which LJ refused to supply) that was contacted less than a month ago and they were told that they now have the option of purchasing from there entire moulding line (besides Ponzio) as well as mats, foam, etc. So who cares if your local suppliers are selling to artists or photographers, it's only a matter of time before Larson targets them. They sent my friend a nice fat catalog and everything. It would be just plain dumb of him to pay shipping on mats or foam but I'm telling you their business practices are changing on a daily basis and the more you support them, the more it will hurt you in the long run. Opinions are like __________; everybody has one. That's mine.
  5. wendy lang

    wendy lang CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Harry's GREAT! He responded IMMEDIATELY when I called him to say that our store had been gutted by fire last year. We use Artique primarily and Bainbridge as back-up since the fire. Artique is "supposed" to be as good as Bainbridge, but less in cost.

    Larson has always been good to us, and Harry in particular. Their profit margins aren't as good as Decor or Omega, but their WASTE is less! Very important!

    The Art Corner
    264 Washington Street
    Salem, MA 01970
  6. Joe B

    Joe B SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Sorry Wendy but you lost me when you said that Larson's WASTE is less! Why would their waste be less? If you buy length you buy length and most every company has approximately the same length sticks. If you buy chop the companies are all the same... mat boards and glazing are all standard sizing for all companies - please explain how LJ has less waste. :shrug:
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2009
  7. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    The other companies mentioned have more defects causing problems in maximum yield.
  8. Joe B

    Joe B SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Thanks Jeff - don't know if I believe that. The mouldings I receive from Omega, Studio, and Superior is always very high quality with very little loss, in fact, I have just about zero loss due to quality issues from any of those three. Another of my supplier has quality issues with the mouldings but I order lots of other supplies from them, I'm just more selective with the moulding I order so even they aren't to much of a problem. It's hard to believe I'm the only one with that type of service from Omega, Studio, and Superior. I don't carry LJ and I can truthfully say I never will, so I guess I really can't compare quality. Joe
  9. RParrish

    RParrish PFG, Picture Framing God

    I know enough framers and have been around plenty to know that Omega and Studio are/have been, notorious for quality issues, less yeild in a box and such. Unlike those two companies Larson will deliver free, sure the cost of freight is wrapped up in a slighty more expensive cost per foot, but the equal out if you add the cost of freight to a box of Studio. And if you get a few sticks that are warped (like this thread) they will replace them with no hassle, that equals 100% yield in my opinion. With any other companiy you would be stuck with the additional cost of shipping if you returned anything.
  10. Pat Murphey

    Pat Murphey SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I'm glad for you that you are such an expert on LJ and their business practices. I buy from LJ and an excellent local distributor, along with a number of chop services and "closed corner" manufacturers. LJ's products, service and pricing stands up very well to the competition in all areas. Wherever you acquired your expertise about LJ, it doesn't jibe with my experience - and most other framers in the industry. Your expressed bitterness is misplaced - maybe they are lucky not to have you as a customer. :kaffeetrinker_2:
  11. Indyago

    Indyago CGF, Certified Grumble Framer

    No one is perfect.............

    If you have been in this business for a number of years, I am going on 22, you have seen the great, the good and the bad from every supplier you have dealt with.

    I don't allow anyone a "pass" on quality or service, no matter who they are, when it directly affects the business and our profitability.

    I feel I have a very good working relationship with each or the three moulding vendors we do business with. Their reps are top notch and their quality of service, as a group, is very good.

    But, among the three, Larson is superior in all facets. At the end of the day, the infrastructure of their operation makes my job much easier and allows me more time to focus on issues that can make our operation better. They truly are a "partner" in making our business better.

    I don't have to wonder about the status of orders, they confirm quickly and accurately. The items are always on the truck for our Wednesday delivery. If for some reason they miss something, which has hardly ever happened, they make it right instantly, at their expense. And, to concur with an earlier poster, we always get fair a resolution for any item that is less than top quality.

    As I said, our other suppliers are good, but, I have to check up on items more often using time that is valuable to me and our business.

    I am sure a lot of the posters here will accuse me of "drinking the Larson Koolaid". But, I am loyal to those who help our business and help me.

    My opinion would likely evolve if their treatment of us changed or they were somehow competing directly for our customers. But to this point, they are dedicated to helping us keep our existing clientele and find more to add to it. ;)

  12. Riverwood

    Riverwood CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Over the years I have dealt with MANY distributors. When it comes down to it LJ has diversity in their line and provides good service in my area and gets a huge share of my business.
    I did think LJ was nuts when they and my rep at the time Paul Juhl parted ways. Paul was the best rep ever. The next guy was worthless but they picked up on that and now I have Mary Lindbergh. As mentioned in a previous post Mary is very professional and a good rep with great communication.
  13. Joe B

    Joe B SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    As I stated, I don't use Larson so I can't compare their product - I will say I have not had any other company treat me as rudely as Larson has though - in fact no other company has even come close. Enough said.

    I don't doubt that Studio, Omega, & Superior may have or has some quality problems, I'm just saying that I haven't seen it. I complained once to Omega about an item, there was a warped length, they didn't require that I return the piece but the next day I did have a replacement piece at my door. I can't ask for better service than that. Maybe they like my personality or something :)- who knows, all I've said is that I haven't had any problems.
  14. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    Yes we know Joe. They are a terrible terrible company.

    Make another post. You have 666 post showing.
  15. RParrish

    RParrish PFG, Picture Framing God

    Actualy Joe I know exatly how you feel. I used to be a Larson hater, reps where REAL pushy ( I even got into a screaming match with one), product expensive, you know the deal.

    I quit them for two years, a rep came in, we hit it off, I tiried them again. After several years and a few more reps, even better ones. The numbers don't lie, the majority of my moulding sales where Larson. I drank the kool aid and pooled my buying power with them.

    My point? Everything changes............
  16. Joe B

    Joe B SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    RParrish & Jerry, I never said I thought LJ was a bad company, heck with as many people as speak good about them they must be doing something right and I'm not going to criticize them for something I don't know. All I've ever said is that they treated me rudely/badly/unprofessionally. There are just to many other companies out there that has treated me professionally and those are the companies I will deal with and promote. At this time, I have the suppliers I like to deal with, if their quality or service goes bad I will drop them and pick up another supplier, just that simple. Will one of those suppliers ever be LJ - nope - famous old saying, "Burn Me Once Shame on You, Burn Me Twice Shame on Me" - they treated me unprofessionally and I won't give them the chance to do that twice. :shrug:
  17. Sister

    Sister MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    My shop would look very empty. Even though I carry 4 other lines, LJ is the one I display the most. The sales rep makes a tremendous impact on the product lines. I am not particularly thrilled with my LJ rep, and I can really get on my soapbox about the "partner" thing with them. All things considered, I still consider them my best overall supplier. I love Roma and it makes for impressive moulding display, but most of my customers simply cannot affort the Roma luxury.

    If I could pick the best qualities from each of my suppliers, I would not have a complaint ever. It's just not that simple.
  18. Harry FKA Harry

    Harry FKA Harry CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2


    What a waste of time this is. I am sorry to admit I read most of this.....
  19. Joe B

    Joe B SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Harry - I guess that if it was such a waste of time you shouldn't have read it. When I find myself considering something a waste of time I stop doing it and there are some post that I do find as a waste of time. For me there was some, not a lot, but some good information here and I'm glad I read and participated in it. Joe B
  20. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    OK Joe, we are safe now.

  21. Joe B

    Joe B SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Yea Jerry - I was really worried - had to wipe the sweat from my brow...:thumbsup:
  22. Tigerframes

    Tigerframes Grumbler in Training

    Well Pat...

    I've been in the industry seriously since the day I was born. I've been on both sides as a retailer and wholesaler. I've watched them change time and time again. I don't need or want a supplier who sends a rep saying my numbers should be at "X" dollars. I bought a frame the other day from documounts.com. LJ385252 16X20, joined and the total minus shipping came out to 48$ and change. My cost from LJ would have been 46$ and change. Life Saver (with my markups) had me selling the frame by itself retail at aprox. 110$. Do me a favor Pat check your joined price and let me know what you think. Not only did they not ask for a tax ID, all I did was give my name, address, and credit card info. It's really comforting knowing my mother can go online and purchase this direct from documounts rather than going to a local frame shop. I'm sure it makes no difference to you, I can tell where your head is. Up LJ's backside.:fire:
  23. DTWDSM

    DTWDSM SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I really don't like it when a wholesaler comes in and rips on the competition here on the G, and I am guessing that I am not alone.

    If you are who I think you are, I have some of your moulding on my wall and i am not impressed with your postings here.
  24. Therese

    Therese Grumbler in Training

    Why won't LJ sell to you? If you don't mine me asking.

  25. Therese

    Therese Grumbler in Training

    The strong relationship has been fueled by a very professional sales rep, Mary Lindbergh who has solid product knowledge, keeps communications flowing and knows our staff.

    Could I live without Larson-Juhl? Sure I could. Would I want to.....No.

    I couldn't agree with you more. Mary does a fabulous job. Wish I had LJ problems.
  26. Tigerframes

    Tigerframes Grumbler in Training


    I last worked on the Wholesale side 14 years ago in the Chicago area. Moved to the KC metro area in 2000 where I opened my own frame shop. I appreciate your concern. I use 2 local suppliers and order direct from a few others. Point being was I don't need LJ, and it's business tactics like documounts that reassure me. I've never had issues with the quality of their product. I just don't feel like they have independent framers like myself's best interest at heart. I'm also curious as to why you think I'm a wholesaler. Is it because I don't post much? I post when I feel the need to, and this is something I feel strongly about.
  27. Tigerframes

    Tigerframes Grumbler in Training


    I'd hope my local suppliers had more to do than play on The Grumble all day. :nuts:
    I'll go back to keeping my thoughts to myself.
  28. DTWDSM

    DTWDSM SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Tiger, If i am wrong I do apologize.

    You seem to be very anti LJ and when looking at your profile there is not any information and when looking at your previous posts in this and 1 or 2 other threads you sound as if you were a supplier, almost pushing one particular local KC area supplier in one post.

    Once again, if I am wrong I apologize.
  29. Finest Fabric

    Finest Fabric MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Don't have them, don't want them. My shop looks like no other for many miles around and that's the way I like it.
  30. JRB

    JRB PFG, Picture Framing God

    Pretty much the same, I only carry a few L.J. mouldings, probably around ten or twenty of over three thousand corner samples.

    Corner samples are like water, they seek their own level. If you pull all of one company off your walls, the spaces will be filled up very quickly by other companies.

    Like people though, there is no such thing as the perfect supplier, just ones that try harder than others.

  31. shayla

    shayla WOW Framer

    Tigerframes, please feel free to keep posting. Everyone's entitled to their opinion,
    and you have the right to express yours.

    But what you said to Pat was very rude, and I hope that in the future you're able to make your point without insulting someone in that way. It's okay to be angry, and if you are, the Grumble is as good a place as any to speak up. But doing so in an offensive manner will only deafen people to what you have to say. You seem to be an opinionated and articulate person, and it will be much easier to take in what you say if it doesn't include such personally directed insults.

    As for Tim's comments, sometimes industry people do come on here
    posing as something other than they are, and it's easy to start wondering
    when we have so little info. to go on. The longer you're on here, and the better
    we get to know you, this kind of thing will cease to be a problem for you.
    Thanks for taking time to read this comment. It's written with a gentle spirit,
    and I look forward to reading more of your thoughts on the Grumble.
  32. TEKniques

    TEKniques CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    I have to ask...What's a Rep? Can someone send me a picture?
  33. danny boy

    danny boy PFG, Picture Framing God

    TEKniques - Welcome to the 'Grumble. we are glad that you are here...
  34. Paul N

    Paul N In Corner

    Sure, here's one:

  35. shayla

    shayla WOW Framer

    Ha ha. funny. :icon11:

    TEK, if you honestly want to know, it's the
    shortened version of 'representative'.
    As in, the framing representatives
    sent out by various moulding companies
    to the shops that carry their product.

    Then again, it could just mean doing
    fifty of these......

  36. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Shayla, I asked you kindly and out of total respect for our friendship, not to post that picture of me.
    Now I simply can't speak to you for at least ... mmmmmm an hour or two? How does that work for you sweetie?
  37. shayla

    shayla WOW Framer

    Ow! Owie!

    It hurts my last feeling, Baer,
    but I'll heal as best I can.

    I was hoping you wouldn't ever come to this thread.
    Next time, I'll try to remember to photoshop those
    funny mustache eyeglasses on your face so people don't
    recognize you. LOL...but then they'll all think it's Bill Henry. :D
  38. TEKniques

    TEKniques CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Thanks for the definition...I know what they are supposed to be, just never had one in my store. I have a 3000 sq.ft. store, been in business for four years and have expanded to deal with 6 suppliers and 2 distributors. Oh, BTW, this includes our LJ 'rep' who stopped contacting us when we moved from home-based to our storefront.
  39. PicturedFramer

    PicturedFramer MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    How to tell a LJ frame from others, looking at it.

    Just had an idea, if you don't want to pull all you LJ stuff down all at once
    (for all of those who care to) how can we tell an LJ frame from others?
    Just from looking at it from the front on the wall, only you would know.
    Or that goes for any other you might want to do. Something that would not take away from the appearance, yet it would be noticable to you only and not distractive. Any ideas?
  40. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    paint a little bloody "X" on the one end.... then as you look down the side of the row you will see.
  41. PicturedFramer

    PicturedFramer MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    A little bloody "x"

    Thanks Baer for the answer. I'm so glad to see that a lot of my questions in the other thread about Documounts are being addresed there.

    I just got back from Sedona, Az and feel my batteries recharged. This framing business can sure drain you fast. My family is from there and near the Grand Canyon so it's always good to see the relatives and just be around all that beauty. Boy was it hot, 100's and you just bake like in an oven. Went for a hike and saw Javelina, a brood of dessert quail with 10 to 15 chicks. Roadrunner, lots of other hawks and birds. Bought some pinon nuts, cactus and great chili. I just love the place. Just a couple of frame shops that I frequented and mailed some stuff home. The desert motif and the Native American designs are so inspiring. Great Art there. I found one painting by Beatin Yaz but was a little pricy for me. I have a few pieces of his. Well thanks again.
  42. Paul N

    Paul N In Corner

    You have done this before......:p

    I wonder with whose frames, LOL!
  43. evartpat

    evartpat PFG, Picture Framing God

    Good idea Baer!!

    Something just happened today that is making contemplate how MY place would look without LJ ! :mad:
  44. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Care to share what that was, Pat? Was it related to the Documounts issue?
    :kaffeetrinker_2: Rick
  45. PicturedFramer

    PicturedFramer MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Oops, I meant desert quail - not dessert.

    Oops, I meant desert quail - not dessert. Must be hungry!
  46. evartpat

    evartpat PFG, Picture Framing God

    No...though that is very much on my mind. Unlike many of you, it has a very direct effect on my business. Many of my clientele are artists and photographers, the exact target of Documounts.

    My only advantage is quick turn around times, often needed when it comes to artists! :icon11: :p

    No, my irritation has to do with a set of samples I received of a new line, un-assembled, cut pi## poorly, and no labeling whatsoever! I would have to match them to the flyer to get the moulding numbers. Its like they cut the pieces quick and threw them in a box and had them delivered. :mad:

    A small thing perhaps, but I see it as a lack of caring for the "small fry" like me. We aren't a big player when it comes to LJ.
  47. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    That is really surprising. Have you had this happen before? It's got to be a fluke. I've always thought the quality of LJ's samples is among the best.
    :shrug: Rick
  48. DTWDSM

    DTWDSM SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Pat, I would guess that was a lack of caring by a pi$$ poor employee and had nothing to do with the size of fry that you are. Some employees just don't care about what they do and how it may make their company look, no matter who they work for.

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