If you’ve ever been in the market for a new fireplace mantel, then you’ve probably heard of Edmon’s Unique Furniture and Stone Gallery. The family-owned business on Melrose near Larchmont has been operating for the past 38 years on the first floor of what is now the Historic Hollywood Hotel, located on Melrose at Wilton.
“We specialize in custom-made, hand-carved mantels,” says co-owner Mercedes Simonian. “But what makes us different is that we use all of our own original designs that have been patented to us. Everything we sell is completely unique and hand-made.”
Mercedes’ father, Edmon, opened the store in 1978 using a small amount of savings. He was an Armenian immigrant who arrived in Los Angeles two years prior with only $90 in his pockets.
Before leaving Armenia, however, Edmon had trained under both his father and grandfather to become a master craftsman, a family tradition dating back to 1890.
Using stone and woodcarving tools, Edmon set up shop determined to sell only high quality, hand-carved products — a business he continued to operate for the next 32 years. In fact, the business was so successful that it grew from a single rented storefront to the entire ground floor of the Hollywood Historic Hotel building. In 1997, Edmon bought the entire building.
According to Mercedes, Edmon passed away six years ago, leaving his wife Vicky and son Edward to join with her in picking up their father’s mantle (pun intended): “It is truly family owned and operated,” says Mercedes, who has worked in the shop since she was 18.
Consumers have come to expect custom products to be complicated and time-consuming to order. But according to Mercedes, this is not the case at Edmon’s.
“We are the manufacturers of our products,” she says, noting how they eliminate the middleman.
“We always tell people to come to our showroom first. It helps if they bring a picture of what they have, then we can talk about available options.”
Customers can preview and select from a wide variety. “A cast stone mantel takes a week, and a wood-carved mantel takes four weeks,” says Mercedes.