Meet Frank Shaia
Frank Shaia is a second generation rug dealer. His father operated a business in New York and sold rugs throughout the East. In 1973, Frank ‘s older brother Joseph opened up an oriental rug shop in Williamsburg, VA. Frank joined him shortly after.
Joe and Frank had been raised as Catholics, but had never really gotten close to God. In January of 1974, through the witness of a friend, they learned what it meant to become “born again”. Both Joe and Frank, along with their families, started a new life with Christ. One of the first things the Shaia brothers did was to dedicate their business to the Lord. Next they decided to put a Bible verse on their letterhead. The verse they selected, “With God all things are possible” from Mark 10:27, was chosen because they realized that if God could establish them in business, and then give them a new life with Him, surely all things would be possible with Him.
A few years later when Joe and Frank decided to open their second shop in Nashville, Tennessee, Joe hired a young fellow to design new stationary. This young artist was also a Christian and decided to create a small logo on the bottom of their stationary. This logo – a cross with a dove which represents the Holy Spirit coming from it – has been faithfully printed on the Shaia stationery ever since.
In 1978, with shops in Williamsburg, Nashville, Dallas and Houston, Frank bought out the Williamsburg shop. Eventually, his brother Joe closed all of the other shops, just leaving the Williamsburg store.
Although many new rugs are sold in the shop, Frank spends almost all of his time with antique rugs. Because of his experience, he has given talks and lectures throughout the South, including speaking at the Edenton Symposium, Edenton, South Carolina, and the Greenwood Festival of the Arts, Greenwood, Mississippi.
Frank also gives frequent lectures in the Williamsburg area, with titles such as: Antique Persian Rugs, Rugs from the Caucasus, Overview of New Rugs Available Today, Investing in Oriental Rugs, as well as other presentations in the field of oriental rugs. These presentations are given not only in the shop, but also at non-profit and civic organizations.
In addition to his many ads in Southern Accents, Magazine Antiques, Art and Antiques and other fine periodicals, Frank Shaia is also known for his exhibits at many antique shows throughout the East.
Frank and his wife Phoebe reside in Williamsbug, Va. They have 4 children and 5 grand children.