Commissioning Furniture - The Process

Commissioning a piece of furniture is an exciting and rewarding process.  Today, where else do you get to take part in the creation of something entirely new, something never before seen by anyone?

The process begins with a meeting to discuss specifics of the proposed piece, such as inspiration(s), function, dimensions, details, materials. In this initial meeting, I ask for a nonrefundable Design Deposit of $250. This Design Deposit covers my time to develop your concept design and includes one revision to the design, as well as subsequent meetings to present and discuss the design with you.

My goal in the initial meeting is to cultivate an understanding of exactly what you envision. If you don't have a strong vision of what you'd like, or perhaps this is a gift for a friend or loved one, I'm absolutely comfortable working with little design input.

While I'm happy to draw inspiration from examples of other work (as seen in websites, photos, etc.), I do not make reproductions. It is important to me that each piece I make be an original design, a completely unique piece of furniture.


Once we have agreed on an overall design, I prepare a written proposal that defines the scope of the project and the terms. At this point I ask for a 50% deposit, which secures a position in my work schedule. The balance is due at delivery, or completion of the piece if shipping.

The length of time required to build each piece depends on the specifics of each design, so there is no "standard" lead time. Most work requires several months to complete and I generally have a backlog of several months.


I do ship my furniture, and have had no issues with shipping large, heavy items via FedEx and UPS.  However, I would much prefer to deliver my furniture whenever possible.  Why?  I imagine it might be similar to why parents insist on helping their son or daughter move into the freshman dorm.  After all the blood, sweat and tears I put into my work, I appreciate making sure it arrives safely and that it is settled into it's new home.

The cost to deliver depends on the weight, overall dimensions and distance.  If delivering within a 25-mile radius of Pittsburgh, PA, there is typically no charge.

If delivery is not an option, I will build a sturdy, well-padded shipping crate to ensure the safety of your piece en route.  Costs for crating and shipping vary depending on the size and weight of the piece.

The Next Step

If you are ready to join me in the journey that is commissioning fine furniture, I'd love to talk with you.  Please contact me by email or by phone at (412) 447-1325 to schedule an appointment.