To explain the process of designing the table of your dreams, let us describe for you the process one of our long standing customers went through to create what she was looking for. This customer recently moved into a new home. She had an open floor plan and the first thing one saw when walking in the front door was her dining room table. She had a 5' x 3' butcher block table that was too small for her growing family and had been through many years of loyal service. She wanted her new dining table to make a statement, be versatile, and seat a good number of people, especially at Holidays.
After understanding her needs and desires, we scoured the lumber suppliers in her state going through a dozen before we found one having the appropriately dimensioned slab. We wanted to provide our characteristic solid wood, not glued boards slab with interesting grain, the ability to accommodate a large family for the Holidays, and perhaps have a good story to tell along the way.
We went through numerous slabs to find one that fit the criteria. It is typical for us to reject roughly 95% of the slabs we view to pick our chosen few. She happened to live in the area of the supplier and was able to come out to see and approve the slab. Since this is not always possible, we can send photos of prospective slabs to choose from before you slab is finalized. Though we pride ourselves on our knowledge of wood and what will work best, the customer will always have input in the final selection.
The chosen slab was larger than her dining space would comfortably fit year round but could tale a larger table for events. The solution, cut a 4' section off of the 12'5" slab, make a coffee table to use as such but make an extra set of dining table height legs to transform the 3' x 4' multi purpose table into a dining table extension. The finish was discussed and because of the heavy anticipated use of the table, John, our Master Finisher, suggested the perfect finish for the tables that could be redone at any time without removing the table to refinish. This was initially designed as a floor finish and has worked out well as a durable furniture finish.
The story - when flattening the slab on the 5 head router device, the heads hit metal. This was a 150+ year old tree that the slab came from. What were the chances? You guessed it, a nail had been in the tree and created a darkened area in the walnut around it. We were able to recover the nail fragment for her. Now the customer has not only a story but a 150+ year old souvenir to boot. We now have new cutter heads on the 5 head router. Lesson learned - scan all slabs for metal before sending through the router heads!
We wanted to continue the idea of the live edge on these tables at the ends so the ends got a rounded and wavy treatment to them. After a few weeks to complete the process, voila-