“The Chandler family started Eagle Frames Gallery in 1980 up at Lake Tahoe,” said Dave Pirtle, owner of the area business. “The boys’ mother won a Keno ticket and gave them the money they used to start up the business.”
Pirtle, originally from Rocklin, Calif., moved to Sparks and followed his mother to the Rail City when she accepted a position at Saint Mary’s Hospital. He started at Eagles Frames Gallery as a manager and bought the store from the previous owners eleven years ago. When he first started, Pirtle knew nothing about framing.
“I was fortunate to have other employees around who taught me how to do it all,” said Pirtle.
Pirtle met artist Valeriy Kagounki, who is originally from Russia, through a friend and was impressed with his paintings of rural Nevada — the dusty landscapes and the wildlife. Pirtle invited Kagounki to show off his work at the gallery. The artist will able to sign autographs and answer questions from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
“I like to feature a new artist every few month,” said Pirtle. “It’s important to show off local talent.”
Prices for framing start at $50. Pirtle also sells prints. For those looking for a particular artist or a piece of printed art, Pirtle can special order items and ship them to customers.
“If anyone is on a budget, I can work with them and help them find something inexpensive,” said Pirtle. “I also give out discounts!”
Business has been good for Pirtle despite the slowing economy.
“I have the experience,” said Pirtle. “Others will tell you to buy this, spend that. I’m just here to help and fit you with the best frame at the best price for you.”
His experience expands to decorating several businesses all over the Truckee Meadows.
“I’ve framed for several of the major casinos, Silver Legacy, Harrah’s, the Peppermill. I work with six or seven interior designers all over the city” said Pirtle. “I’ve shipped a few pieces to (former President) Jimmy Carter.”
Eagles Frames also offers a painting class on Mondays and Wednesdays with local oil painter, Christa McLaughlin. Each class runs three hours and is $20 per person. They are open to all ages.
Pirtle picks up and delivers his work, driving as far out as Winnemucca to drop pieces off. Customers are also welcome to come to the store to drop off pieces.
For more information about Eagle Frames, call at (775) 827-6206. Eagles Frame is open Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eagles Frame is located at 1510 S. Wells Avenue in Reno.