PICTURE PERFECT: The Preservation Framer co-owners Rob Dziubek, left, and Matt Slobogan founded the company in 2008 after meeting at a former employer and discovering they shared similar artistic and career goals.
Everyone said they’d never make it. When Matt Slobogan and Rob Dziubek, two local guys with vast practical and artistic experience, but no business expertise, wanted to open up their own framing shop in a largely suburban community filled with “super stores” and shopping malls, friends, relatives and colleagues said they were crazy.
The economy – especially for operators of small, niche businesses – was not looking good.
“They said, don’t do it, you don’t have enough visibility or experience,” Slobogan said. “We’re [now] having our best year ever.”
The shop, The Preservation Framer, on Washington Street near North Attleboro’s center, held its opening party in mid-November 2008.
Business partners Slobogan and Dziubek met in 2004 when the former, fresh off 10 years of giving drum lessons, went to work for what was then Corners Framing shop. Though they eventually discovered they shared the same career and artistic goals and visions, they tell very different stories about getting there.
Dziubek, 45, grew up in Franklin, Mass., where he still lives and earned a bachelor’s degree in English, with a minor in fine art, from Saint Anslem College in Manchester, N.H.
After graduation he came back to Massachusetts and started work at Koenig Art Emporium and then at Frame King, which eventually became Corners Framing.
First working the sales floor, he dabbled in framing on the weekends during the full-time framers’ days off and eventually was trained in the trade.
“The English field was so saturated [then] and I had an art background and a strong interest in [art] as well,” Dziubek said. “I liked the idea of not sitting in the office, not being in a cubicle, the idea of creating something. I liked the fact that at the end of the day I could physically hold up something and say, ‘I did this today.’ ”
After Corners bought Frame King there were several co-workers who left to go it on their own but, Dziubek said, nothing felt right.
Until, that is, Slobogan showed up.
A goal of becoming an art teacher sent him to Massachusetts College of Art in Boston from his hometown of Plainville, Mass., but after a year there he decided to follow a different path and spent several years exploring other career options, including auto-body work, screen printing, graphic design and teaching drums.