Frame Up

Arden-area gallery makes original art accessible

By Jessica Laskey
June 2021

Every Christmas, Kathy Caitano gives her sons a piece of original art. Her grandkids get one too. This unique gifting strategy is not just because Caitano owns Artistic Edge Custom Framing & Gallery on Fulton Avenue. It’s because she knows the importance of getting children hooked early on art.

“Art education in the U.S. is lacking,” says Caitano, who has owned Artistic Edge for 15 years. “In Europe, art is not a luxury but a necessity. Here, people don’t feel that way if they’re not exposed to art when they’re young. My kids grew up in the gallery, so they know how to admire art. I always suggest that people bring their little ones in and expose them to art—they love it.”

Though she’s always been an art lover, Caitano hadn’t considered working in the field until two decades ago. She held a variety of jobs at McClellan Air Force Base, Bureau of Land Management and Department of Defense. She founded a billing and bookkeeping business in 1990. She also co-owned and operated a Curves women’s fitness gym for five years before realizing that, even though the business was lucrative, fitness was not her passion. (She can attest, however, that “it doesn’t matter if you’re 20 or 88, most women don’t like their bodies.”)

When she and her husband were on their annual anniversary trip in 2007, he asked her what was next and suggested she try art framing. (They were at an art auction at the time.) Caitano wasn’t sure, but did some research on framing when they returned home.

She found an 1,100-square-foot space on Fulton called Paykel’s Framing for sale. It was small and crammed with merchandise, but Caitano saw potential. She bought the shop and asked the owner to teach her the ropes. After his coaching and several advanced framing classes, Caitano was on her way.

“From day one, I was in love,” the North Highlands resident says. “I’d never felt this way about another job. Apparently, I have a knack for designing—it came very naturally. It’s about not only bringing out what’s best for the (art) piece, but also molding that to the personality of the owner and the home it’s going in.”

Over the years, Caitano has expanded the shop into an 8,000-square-foot artistic mecca that offers custom framing, art and jewelry, and studio space for seven working artists. Though the shop is far from Midtown, it hosts a lively Second Saturday reception each month with live music (on pause due to COVID), along with a rotating roster of artists at price points to accommodate all levels of collectors.

“It’s really not that expensive to have original art in your home—even a college student can afford a $50 piece,” Caitano says. “Plus, it lasts forever and can be passed down to kids and grandkids. Art never goes out of style.”

For more information, visit

Jessica Laskey can be reached at Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento.

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