Commissioning Custom Furniture & Cabinetry

I will sometimes work with clients who have a very clear idea about the furniture they would like. Others are just beginning to develop a concept and looking for input and the opportunity to discuss the piece of custom made furniture they are dreaming about. In any case, most commissions begin with a phone call or an email regarding the process.

The process is really pretty simple:


Within the span of a phone conversation (email) or two I will generally have enough information to give you a cost estimate for your furniture. If the estimate is acceptable, I will ask for a design deposit to complete any necessary design work. When the design is approved, I’ll submit a formal proposal and enter your project into my schedule.


In order to prepare an estimate, I try to find out as much as possible about the custom furniture or cabinetry you have in mind. Any and all information you can give me is helpful; images of pieces or styles similar to what you have in mind, very general descriptions or specific ideas, all are great. I’m good at asking questions that will help me be as accurate as possible with your estimate.

Custom Design Work

Pending approval of the estimate, we can go forward with the final design work. My goal is to provide you with furniture that is unique and specific to your needs. You may already have drawings we can build from and I am happy to do that. More often, I will need to create drawings for your review and approval. I will ask for a design deposit (generally 10% of the estimate) to generate finished drawings, including any revision work necessary to insure you will be happy with the final design.


When the design is approved, I will give you a formal proposal. The proposal will include details of the project, contract price, terms and estimated completion date.

Delivery / Shipping

When possible, I like to deliver the furniture I build for you, myself. When distance makes this impractical, or cost prohibitive, I contract with a trusted “blanket wrap” shipper who will deliver the furniture to your home (practically anywhere in N. America) and set it in place.

"The interesting thing about Dave is that he has a really wide range. In our experience, most folks who do custom furniture do very nice work, but it tends to run along a particular style. Dave has pieces that are very traditional, items that are very contemporary, and also work that is in between."

— Bill C., Waitsfield, VT