There’s no such thing as an off-the-shelf piece at DAVIDSON, because every piece is individually handmade by our highly skilled craftsmen. As well as outstanding quality this also means we can customise any piece to your own taste. We like to think of it as our USP. But what exactly does customisation mean and how does it differ from opting for fully bespoke furniture? Here, we guide you through the process and the various options on offer that will guarantee you end up with something that’s as unique as you are.
What’s the difference between bespoke and customisation?
Bespoke furniture is an entirely new design based on a client’s specific requirements that hasn’t been made before. Customisation, on the other hand, involves taking one of the pieces from our collection and tailoring the size, timber and finish, the features (such as handles or metalwork) and the shape to your needs. The fundamental structure stays true to the original design, but the overall look of one piece to the next can be entirely different. For example, a two-door cabinet in sycamore black (our most popular house finish) will look very different to one with four doors and two tones, or in a satin or a matt finish.
Why choose customisation?
There are many benefits to choosing customisation over bespoke but perhaps the most important is that the design has been made before; essentially, it’s been tried and tested. We know exactly what the pitfalls are right at the beginning and how to amend them. Our clients get the benefit of our experience and expert craftsmanship, and they can be safe in the knowledge that whatever they order has been made in the best way possible because it has been tested previously.
A great example of this is our new Lunar desk. The idea came from some ideas behind a bespoke client commission that we loved so much that we adapted the design for our own collection. While we choose timbers and finishes that complement each other, like any of our pieces it can be completely customised in any way you choose. Take a look at our post from head of design, Mark Blanchard where he explains more about how the lunar desk design came about.
How can you customise?
There are several ways to customise your furniture at DAVIDSONS. Here’s the rundown:
Your choice of timber and veneer can make all the difference to the look and feel of a piece. Not only can you choose the type of wood, but even the direction of the grain, as in our award-winning Howes table. And, we have a wide selection of finishes, so you’re sure to find the one that’s right for you. You could have a coffee table finished in sensual black gold dust ̶ where we add a sprinkling of black to high-gloss gold lacquer ̶ to evoke a sense of glamour in your living room. Or, for something more industrial in flavour, try our ultra-smooth stone vellum, a tinted matt finish that is both hard-wearing and attractive. Want something that really stands out from the crowd? Why not opt to have your furniture gilded? This process of gold-leafing wooden surfaces to give the appearance of solid gold or silver is just one of the ways we are championing British craftsmanship. We use it to spectacular effect on our Scarsdale console table, but you could incorporate in any piece of your choosing.
This is where you can really play with the design. Altering the handles on a cabinet or desk, for example, or, indeed, removing them altogether, can make a vast difference to the aesthetic of a piece. You could change their shape (square or round), material (nickel, brass or bronze) and finish (polished or matt). You could choose to have a table with or without feet, such as in our Hester occasional table. Or, you could change the fabric of a chair to give a traditional design a more contemporary feel. This works particularly well on our Nelson chair, where you can also customise the metal finish on the feet.
Size and shape:
All our furniture is available in up to three standard sizes, but we are happy to make them to your own specific dimensions. Do bear in mind, though, that this may require some adjustment, such as to the pedestal of a table to accommodate a larger top. You can even adapt the shape of a piece. For example, in our Eclipse desk, we have made it with both curved and straight edges.
What to expect from DAVIDSON
A truly personal service, for starters. Making our clients happy is our ultimate goal and we will always endeavour to meet your specific requirements, even if it’s something we don’t usually do. For example, if a client wants a certain coloured shagreen or leather that isn’t in our range, we will try our best to source the exact one. We’ve even made additions to the design, such as a cabinet we are currently making that has beautiful Lalique glass insets. And, we’re there every step of the way to guide you through the process, advising on what works and what doesn’t, what can be achieved within your budget and finding solutions to any obstacles that may arise. And, we provide 2D and 3D drawings, as well as timber samples for approval to ensure full client satisfaction before any model goes into production.
What to consider with customised furniture
Firstly, it helps if you have a basic idea of what you’re looking for and from there we can help with exact sizes and proportions. So, for example, if someone wanted a dining table, they would need to know roughly how many people they want it to seat. The next step is colour preference. We can then guide you here as well to help select the perfect colour match. Room plans are extremely helpful when choosing a piece. Plus, for London clients, we are happy to visit their home or office to get a feel for the room in question and advise what will work best in the space. It’s all part of the service that ensures you get a customised piece of furniture that’s as good as bespoke, but with the security of knowing that the design actually works.
If you’re looking for a piece of customised furniture, get in touch to make an enquiry or an appointment with the DAVIDSON team. Or come along to our showroom in London’s Chelsea Design Centre. We look forward to hearing from you.