What's Happening

Dunn Family Sells Company to Employees

The Dunn Family, long-time owners of P Graham Dunn, Inc, is proud to announce the sale of P Graham Dunn to its employees in the form of an employee stock ownership program (ESOP). All 300 employees will be retained in the transition and eligible employees will become owners.

“An ESOP is our best tool for transitioning P Graham Dunn from one generation of leadership to the next,” said Peter Dunn, founder and long-time CEO. “The first two employees LeAnna and I hired, Carol Curie and Robert Shetler, are still with us after forty-two years. An outright sale of the company to a competitor would highly jeopardize fellow workers that have been with us for decades. An ESOP assures a secure future and a continuation of our values for those that have shown dedication and loyalty to us. Our ongoing management team representing 133 years of employee experience will be augmented with outside skilled leadership on our board of directors.”

The company will retain the familiar P Graham Dunn name and will be directed by an experienced team of leaders. Patrick Helmuth will become the newly appointed CEO. Joe Knutson will continue serving as company President. Additional management will be composed of Robert Shetler, long-time VP of Manufacturing, Franklin Geiser, VP of Technology, Andy Yost, VP of Sales, and Anthony Burdette, VP of Marketing and Product Development, all continuing in their current roles. Peter Dunn will also continue to contribute to product development and operations, lending his genius and expertise as an advisor to the new employee-owned company.

“On behalf of the employees, I want to thank the Dunn family for giving us this opportunity to keep the business locally owned,” said Helmuth. “Our people are what make P. Graham Dunn a leader in the industry. They will be the key drivers behind our future success.” Helmuth continued, “Our retailer customers should experience the same excellent service from our customer service team and our sales and marketing partner - OneCoast”.

P. Graham Dunn is nestled in the heart of Amish Country and manufactures art, gift and home décor. What started over forty years ago as a mission assignment on the streets of New York City has blossomed into an international business, serving thousands of accounts throughout the country and around the world. Rooted in humble beginnings, the business remains nimble and continues to adapt to an ever-changing gift industry.

The company displays its products in OneCoast showrooms in Atlanta, GA, and Dallas, TX, and operates its own showroom in Las Vegas, NV.  It also operates its factory, warehouse, and retail presence in Dalton, OH. Continued growth for the company has been a result of newly developed sales channels and product categories beyond inspirational décor, including dedicated lines of coastal, Christmas, and craft products.

 

DIY Framed Original Art
Guest Blog by Bethany Joy

This blog post is sure to be extra fun because I get to tell you all about some amazing products from an amazing company, P Graham Dunn! If you haven’t heard of them yet, be sure to check out their website (linked here) because they have some really unique customizable surfaces. In today’s post, I’m going to walk you through step by step how I customized their 10x7 inch and 7x7 inch craft frames and show you how easy it will be for you to do the same with your own artistic flair.

The craft frame surfaces that P Graham Dunn offers are great because they come totally blank and ready to create on how ever you please. They’re wooden, which makes them super versatile as well. 

It took me a while to choose how I wanted to use these frames, but I finally decided it would be perfect to prepare and mount two of my paintings on paper in the frames. I really love how these pieces turned out (my Mom and Nana did too...these were gifts for them!). I also really love how easy it was to complete, so I thought it’d be fun to do a little DIY post for you! 

Here’s the step-by-step guide and details: 

 

Step 1: Paint entire frame one color.

You can choose any color for this step. For my 10x7 inch frame, I chose to mix up a shade of gray using acrylic paints. For the 7x7 inch frame, I chose to paint just the backing board white and leave the frame its natural wood color (as pictured, so you can actually skip step 2 and step 3 if you’re going for that look). 

 

Step 2: Paint entire frame white. 

Again, you could use any color for this step. I chose to use white particularly because I knew the painting I was planning to mount had a white border around it and would blend well into the frame backing. I did two coats of white acrylic paint for this step...all over the gray frame and the backing board as well. 

 

Step 3: Sand it to desired texture.

For this step, I took a small piece of sandpaper and lightly sanded the frame (not the backing board-I left the background completely white). I wanted to give my frame a slightly distressed look allowing the gray to show through the white paint by doing so. You can sand as much or as little as you’d like for this step; it’s really your preference. Be sure to sand around the edges of the frame as well.

 

Step 4: Choose the artwork to mount. 

You could actually do this step first, but I think it’s important to note that since you’ve likely been sanding, you’ll want to make sure you check your painting for dust at this point before you mount it to the frame. As far as choosing an original piece of artwork to frame? Well, I chose a painting on watercolor paper (140 lb paper). I loved this piece in particular for its edges. I prepped the watercolor paper ahead of time with hand-torn edges to give the piece an extra unique look against the white background of the frame. Make sure your art is sized correctly as well, my pieces (approximately 5x7 and 5x5 inches) had some room around the edges to show the white wood backing board of the frames.

 

Step 5: Apply Gel Medium to mount artwork:

For this step, I used the Artist Loft brand of gel medium. All you need to do for this step is to cover the back of your original artwork on paper with gel medium, and place it onto the backing board, being sure to smooth out any air bubbles. Gel medium is a versatile material that can be used for a variety of things but for this project, it works as a great adhesive. 

 

Step 6: Allow to dry, then seal:

I allowed these frames to dry for about 4 hours. Next, I chose to use a spray varnish for this very last step to protect the art, ensuring that the painting was properly sealed onto the frame. This varnish is acid free and provides a non-yellowing protective layer before hanging your artwork on display. 

 

These fabulous frames from P Graham Dunn were just what I needed to showcase these sweet mini original paper paintings. I love how I was able to really customize the frames and make them perfectly fitting for my artwork. I’m confident that you will absolutely love these frames from P Graham Dunn and enjoy trying out this easy project! In fact, P Graham Dunn has given us an amazing coupon code for 15% off their entire site...just type the code JOY at checkout, how exciting! 

Be sure to tag us both on social media and let us know if you try this project- we’d love to see your art and share!  #PGrahamDunn  #bethanyjoyart 

Also, special thanks to my mom, Carla Joy Photography, for the fabulous photos used in this post. 

      

      

 

Host a Crafting Party
Hear first-hand from Arrowhead Parable Christian Store

We had been considering a variety of crafting classes and were excited to see all of the craft ready options in the new P. Graham Dunn line. We found a simple, abstract flower that we felt people could replicate - but still make it their own. We then used a stencil to add text. 

We announced the class in-store and through Facebook on a Friday afternoon and by lunchtime Saturday we had 9 of the 20 spots filled. Shortly after, a single person claimed the remaining spots! We quickly decided to open up a second class and that didn't take long to fill up either. When reserving their spot, our crafters were asked to choose between white or gray-washed pallets (which we took care of prior to the class).

We planned the project so that they could get their word stenciled and the base of their flower sketched and painted, then we stopped for a simple lunch. After the meal, the ladies were able to add the finishing touches to their projects (shading and highlighting their flower to add dimension).

It was so neat to see all of the creativity in the room. The ladies had a fantastic time and are looking forward to our next event!

 

Amber Gincerowski

Gift Buyer, Arrowhead Parable Christian Store

   

      

Interested in hosting your own craft party? Over 75 varieties of craft decor available HERE!