I have a passion for magazine ads and every aspect of running this business. It’s fun getting my fingertips smudged up with old ink after scouring magazines for hours. It’s great planning a framing project with someone over email or talking on the phone with someone to explain pricing. Even the time-consuming packing process is a part of the business I love. 


My first encounter with magazine ads was back in the 1990s when I was dreaming of owning a Rolex. I first got hooked on Rolex after getting up close and personal with solid gold his and hers models worn by a couple my mom and I knew. My fixation to get a Rolex was further fueled by advertisements, which I remember seeing while flipping through magazines in the waiting rooms of doctor’s offices.

At some point, Rolex ads ended up taped to my bedroom wall, but I wasn’t displaying them so much for decoration as I was for motivation to work hard and save up so I could one day own one. Ultimately, after many hours spent working in a local grocery store, I got my first Rolex while on a high school class trip to Paris.


Fast forward to 2017, watch advertisements came back into my life. Instead of influencing me to get another Rolex, the ads actually took the place of buying a watch. Collecting the actual watches was becoming harder for me, but collecting vintage ads was easier and gave me the same thrills and satisfaction. The lengths I went through to find them, the character they possessed, their details I could obsess over were all reasons I loved old watches and vintage ads. I found myself as excited about this newfound hobby as I was about old watches. I rediscovered ads and a new passion and wondered if anyone else would feel the same way about them as I do.


Ad Patina was a side hustle until 2019 when I quit my day job and pursued my passion full-time. In the early days I hunted, shared, and sold mostly watch ads. But, over the years, my interest and the offerings have expanded to highlighting print advertisements for many brands and products, such as automobiles, travel, fashion, and more. Handling so many ads and interacting with so many people sharing my love for ads through Ad Patina has made me appreciate them even more. Certainly I’m captivated by their sheer artistry, the beauty of the visual elements and brilliance of the writing, but I’m also equally captivated by their nostalgia. This art form is much more than just imagery and words – they are tangible reminders of a past we secretly long for and that inspires us today. 


I live for the excitement of hunting for ads and connecting with people, two joys that Ad Patina allows me to realize. I love personally working with each and every customer to educate them about the world of vintage ads and helping them design their framing project to ensure the ads are beautifully framed and preserved. I truly enjoy getting to know each of my customers and connecting with them about our shared interest and passion for ads.

With each year, Ad Patina continues to expose more people to print advertisements. Ads are being gifted, purchased by diehard enthusiasts, and acquired by the businesses and brands themselves. They’re continually becoming an integral part of online articles to give historical and  cultural context to resource guides and stories about products and brands. As the market for vintage ads continues to grow, Ad Patina will continue to stay true to its mission: to elevate ads into true works of art that showcase the life’s work of skilled copywriters, artists, and agencies.

"The glory days of amazing print ads may be gone, but the future of Ad Patina is bright. Because so many of us enjoy art, the past, and all the amazing stories of brands, the rich history of advertising will always have a place in our lives."

Founder Nick Federowicz lives in the Chicagoland area with his amazing wife, two crazy children, and Oreo, their pet ball python. Life is wild for us - but I probably wouldn't have it any other way!