Los Angeles trophy shops talk about the awards business
Who we talked to
Richard Potthoff, manager
Carr's Trophies & Engraving
11660 W. Pico Blvd.
Karen Wallace, owner
Los Angeles Trophy & Award Co.
Saul Gonzalez, president
House of Trophies & Awards
1820 E. First St.
What services do you offer?
Richard Potthoff: "We do diamond engraving, laser engraving, plaques, trophies, corporate awards, ribbons and medals. Primarily we do corpo-rate awards and engraving."
Karen Wallace: "We specialize in custom trophies and awards. We also do engraving, glass and crystal etching, embroidery, silk screening, pad printing and ceramic tiles with murals."
Saul Gonzalez: "We make awards, trophies, medallions, plaques, crystals, acrylics and glass. We can do etching on all of those surfaces. We can customize anything."
What options do people have when choosing a trophy?
Richard Potthoff: "We do anything from traditional one-column trophies to glass and acrylic awards. There are tons of options."
Karen Wallace: "It's a huge array - it depends on what they're looking for and how much they want to spend. We have lower-end lines and trophies of higher quality."
Saul Gonzalez: "We have any of the standard colors, and they can choose from marble, plastic, wood and granite for the bases. We have more than 300 styles."
What are some of the options for figures on top of trophies?
Richard Potthoff: "We have babies and bobble-head trophies, which are popular these days for things like kids' soccer and baseball."
Karen Wallace: "We deal with a lot of different suppliers, so we can get virtually any top they want."
Saul Gonzalez: "There's a donkey's rear that's pretty popular. We've also done a Hawaiian lei and a last-place trophy with a golfer with his pants down."
How do you charge?
Richard Potthoff: "Just a figure with a simple little base is about $12.50. If you want a larger column and base, those run abut $18."
Karen Wallace: "It's by the size and quality of materials. The average cost is probably between $50 and $75, depending on what materials you want."
Saul Gonzalez: "It all depends on what materials you want and how much information you want on it. The average trophy is about 12 inches and runs anywhere from $4.50 to $6.50."
What's the funniest, most unusual request you've received?
Richard Potthoff: "We did a toilet paper trophy once, where they had us make a column with a stack of toilet paper rolls."
Karen Wallace: "A marketing company wanted a trophy with a slingshot on it. So, we custom-made a slingshot that was gold-plated."
Saul Gonzalez: "We've done trophies for the Erotica Awards."