Custom Walnut Coffee Table in Newton

Custom Walnut Coffee Table in Newton

When we make a custom live edge dining table, we select a slab from the thousands and thousands that our distribution partners have in their stock. These slabs come in dozens of species, several common thicknesses, and countless different lengths and widths. We select one that matches the aesthetic and functional needs of the project, making every effort to be conscientious about material efficiency; after all, there’s little sense in buying a twelve-foot slab when an eight-footer will do. Except. Sometimes there’s a slab that just sings. It strikes our client – and us – just so, and suddenly there’s no other slab for the project. It’s far longer than we need for the live edge table, perhaps, but it’s the one.

In these cases, the whole section of live edge wood belongs to the client, even if there’s going to be a substantial piece that won’t make it into the original dining table. They’re free to take it as-is, untouched and unfinished. These off-cuts are fantastic for personal projects, and they make great gifts to hobbyist woodworkers. The honest truth, though, is that as often as not they’ll wind up in a basement or a closet, unused and gathering dust.

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These live edge slabs are so beautiful, and the tables they become so special, that we love to take those off-cuts and roll them straight into another project, just as we did for this coffee table. Made from the excess of this custom dining table in Newton, this custom coffee table was a way to use every last bit of the slab, minimizing waste and maximizing yield. When the material’s this nice, we always want to see it become furniture that lives up to its promise.

Just because it’s a “leftover” piece of wood doesn’t mean that we cut any corners on our process, though. Custom tables require custom design processes no matter what size they are or where the material comes from. We only build handmade wood furniture in one way, and that’s thoroughly, thoughtfully, and carefully. 

The style of base you see here is one we’ve used before, tweaked and modified for a couple different projects and their particular requirements. With individual components hand-carved to a design by Cannon Hill’s Sam O’leary, this “infinity base”, as we call it, takes forethought and concentration – not to mention a steady hand. There’s a mid-century flavor to the way each member sweeps and rolls that feels perfectly at home in a wide range of interior design styles. 

There’s a closeness to the material and the product that occurs when you’re building custom wood furniture. We feel a sense of ownership over the things that go out our door, long after they make it to a client’s home, and we feel a responsibility to the material that we use to make them. It would be a shame to turn these live edge slabs into anything less than what they can be, and it’s a shame to let any of them go to waste. So we don’t.