The Stickley Furniture | Mattress Story
E. J. Audi opened his first furniture store in Manhattan in 1928 with the promise of providing the finest furniture available. This tradition is continued by Aminy Audi and her son Edward.
The Stickley brothers burst into international prominence in the early 20th century with their Arts and Crafts, or “Mission Oak “, designs. These were based on the notion that furniture should be “honest”—a reaction against the fake joinery, unnecessary gaudiness, and shoddy workmanship of many of the pieces created in the early days of industrial furniture making. The Stickley Brothers used solid construction, what-you-see-is-what-you-get joinery, and the highest-quality woods. Finishes were not thick gums but clear dyes that allowed natural grain to sparkle. In the 1920s, Leopold Stickley honored the traditions of early American craftsmen in his colonial-inspired Cherry Valley Collection, earning him the title “Revered Dean of Cabinet Makers”. The Stickley brothers showed a genius for design by creating hundreds of new forms that were beautiful, practical, exceedingly strong and long-lasting, and perfect for the new ways American families wanted to live.
The Audi Family
While Leopold Stickley worked diligently in Upstate New York to make L. & J.G. Stickley synonymous with furniture excellence, his cause was joined downstate by his close friend, Manhattan retailer E.J. Audi. As America’s largest Stickley dealer, E.J. Audi spent three decades espousing the merits of Stickley to New York’s most discerning customers. Selling Stickley furniture was a passion he shared with his son Alfred, who grew to understand the importance of quality craftsmanship.
In 1974, years after Leopold Stickley’s death, it was Alfred and Aminy Audi who purchased a struggling L. & J.G. Stickley, knowing they were taking a risk. They also knew that by honoring Stickley’s tireless dedication to craftsmanship, they could turn the company around. In reissuing the Mission collection in 1989, the Audis tapped into a nearly forgotten era of American furniture history and helped to shape a renaissance of Arts and Crafts. They helped Stickley grow from being a leader of a movement to a leader in the furniture world.
Simultaneously, the Audis kept the legacy of E.J. Audi alive by creating a network of Stickley Audi retail showrooms across several states. The company completed a renovation of its 15 showrooms in 2021, rebranding them as Stickley Furniture | Mattress. In November 2020, Stickley Furniture | Mattress topped the Consumer Reports ranking of the country’s best furniture retailers.