How to Design a Custom Conference Table

designing custom conference table


If you’ve looked through catalogs of conference tables, it can be frustrating when you can’t find what you’re looking for. Why not create a custom conference table that perfectly aligns with your vision and serves not only as a functional surface, but also as a focal point in your conference room? At Greg Pilotti Furniture Makers, we can help you design the perfect conference table for your business in just a handful of steps.

custom conference tables

Step 1: Determine Your Room Dimensions and Seating Needs

The first step in the design process is to think practically about how many people you need to seat. At Greg Pilotti Furniture Makers, we can create custom conference tables for businesses that seat anywhere from four to 20 people or more. Even if you typically hold meetings with just a handful of people, you need to consider the largest gathering you might have in your conference room, and plan your seating accordingly.
Choosing a too-small conference table is a more costly mistake than choosing one that is bigger than you need, especially if your company has plans to grow. A table that’s too small can force you to seat some attendees at larger meetings along the wall, making for an awkward dynamic. Or, you could try to crowd around the table and end up feeling cramped.
Once you know the number of seats you need, you can use our seating chart to help you select a table that will accommodate that level of seating. For example, if you’d like a table that can seat 12 people, you could choose a 96” x 128” rectangular table, a 54” x 168” boat-shaped table, a 96” x 96” square table, a 144” diameter round table or a 48” x 180” live edge gap table.
You also need to factor in the size constraints of your conference room to ensure your table fits comfortably into the space. Measure the area in your conference room, subtracting any area taken up by other pieces of furniture, so you know what space dimensions you have to work with. Your conference table should be small enough to fit into this area with plenty of clearance around it. This clearance should be at least three and a half feet in a small room and closer to six feet in larger rooms.

Once you’ve determined how much area is available in the room and subtracted the amount of clearance needed, you’ll have the maximum dimensions for your conference table. Combining this knowledge with your seating needs can help you choose the perfect size for your custom conference table. 

View our Size and Seating Guide

Step 2: Choose Your Conference Table Design Style

Once you know your seating needs and space restrictions, you can start to visualize what you want your table to look like. One of the significant advantages of having a custom conference table built for your business is that you can choose a style that fits your brand and the rest of your decor. We can create customized styles to match your vision. Some to consider include the following.
  • Live edge:live-edge table offers something truly unique for your conference room. These tables are rectangular, but they consist of two halves, with the inside of each half being an uncut, natural edge. These edges form a small gap that runs along the middle of the table, which means you typically won’t want to seat people at the ends of the table. This natural wood top with a crafted metal base makes for a beautiful table that brings the beauty of nature into your conference room.
  • Plinth:plinth table has a solid, rectangular base formed from metal sheets. We make the tabletop from your choice of wood and include a live edge for more visual interest. You can customize the height of this table to accommodate traditional seating or to serve as a standing table.
  • Railway: The railway table has a distinctly industrial look, making it ideal for companies that embrace an urban aesthetic and want their conference room to fit this style. The table features a metal base inspired by trains and trestle bridges, along with a rectangular wooden tabletop.
  • Rift: The rift conference table has a sleek, modern appearance that is right at home in most modern workplaces. The table features a black panel base with a solid wood tabletop. The simplicity and customizability of this table design make it an excellent choice for many companies.
  • River: A river table is a creative and unique style to consider. We build this table like a live-edge table, but in this case, we fill the gap created by the inward-facing live edges with blue transparent river glass. It adds functionality, since you can now seat people at the ends of the table, and it creates a statement piece that is sure to impress anyone who enters your conference room.
  • Single slab: As the name suggests, a single-slab table features a tabletop that’s one continuous slab of wood with a live edge on both sides of the table. That makes the single-slab table the most natural style available. Each single-slab conference table is unique, and all of them have a premium look and feel.
  • Solid wood: Solid-wood tables are excellent, all-purpose conference tables that are durable enough to last a lifetime. You can choose from various high-quality hardwoods, and we’ll pair the wood tabletop with a steel base that will provide sturdy support and allow your wood tabletop to shine.
  • Trestle: Trestle conference tables take their name from the type of table base they feature. Wood trestles support the ends of the table, and a beam runs between them. Trestle bases have a rustic appearance. Wooden trestle tables are a convenient option to consider because they can break down, making it easy to move them with the help of an elevator.
  • Valley: Valley tables are a type of live-edge table with a sizeable gap between the sloped live edges to allow for the installation of power supplies and data ports. All table styles can integrate power and data, but this style does so in a way that blends high-tech function with natural, fluid design.
  • Waterfall: Waterfall edges have become a popular feature for modern kitchen counters and bars, and they can be stunning on a conference table, as well. The top of the table continues seamlessly down the sides to form a sleek, waterfall appearance. These tables offer seating on both sides, but not at the ends.
  • Besides choosing a style option, you can customize your table further by choosing whether to include a logo or other personal touch. You can add your branding as an inlaid piece, an engraving or a vinyl overlay. Creating a branded boardroom table is one of the best ways to show off the fact that you’ve invested in customized furniture.

View our Conference Table Options

Step 3: Choose Your DIY Conference Table Wood Type and Finish

At Greg Pilotti Furniture Makers, we specialize in creating beautiful wood tabletops. That said, we offer quartz and as an alternative tabletop material for some tables. Quartz is extremely durable. It has an appearance similar to marble, with beautiful veining that gives it a touch of luxury. Quartz is also neutral enough to fit nearly anywhere.
If you’re opting for a reclaimed or antique wood tabletop, there are several species of wood to choose from, and a variety of ways to finish each species. That means you can find a wood type and finish that perfectly matches your existing furniture, or you can choose the option you like the best. Let’s take a look at the species of wood and finish options to consider.


hardwood walnut conference table



Walnut has an especially earthy feel because of its open-grain texture. It’s the most popular type of wood we offer for conference tabletops. It is a more costly material than other wood species, but is a beautiful hardwood to consider, with a naturally rich brown color. There are a few finish options for walnut, including no stain at all for a more natural appearance:

  • No stain
  • Medium-dark
  • Fruitwood
  • Onyx



Maple has a closed-grain texture, meaning it feels smooth to the touch. Maple comes with a mid-level price tag. Along with white oak, maple is one of the most versatile choices for staining options. Maple’s consistent light color enables it to take stain readily. Finish options include:

  • No stain
  • Kona
  • Coffee
  • Rich Tobacco
  • Mission
  • Michaels
  • White Mist
  • Rich Cherry
  • Cappuccino
  • GF Ebony 



Ash is the most affordable wood option we offer, and it’s also one of the hardest and most durable choices. It also has an open-grain texture, which means little scratches or other signs of wear that affect the table over time will blend in with the natural texture. Ash has a yellowish hue, but it’s possible to cover this with the right finish. Finish options include:

  • No stain
  • Mowhawk White 
  • Kona
  • Seely
  • Onyx


White Oak

White oak is a heavy, open-grain wood. Like walnut, it can be more expensive than other wood options, but it’s an exceptionally hard wood, meaning it is incredibly durable. When you choose white oak, you also benefit from having so many finish options to choose from. These options include:

  • No stain
  • No-Stain Cerused
  • Antique Slate
  • Antique Slate Cerused
  • Weathered Gray Tincture
  • Coffee
  • Mowhawk Honey
  • Onyx
  • Weathered Gray
  • Mohawk White 


Red Oak

Red oak offers some of the same advantages as white oak, including hardness and durability, and it comes at a similar price. The main difference is that red oak naturally has a warmer color. Red oak is also open-grain, but it can feature a more pronounced texture than white oak, with beautiful swirling designs.  You can select from these finishes for red oak tables:

  • No stain
  • Onyx
  • Michaels
  • Coffee
  • Antique Slate



Cherry is well-loved for its stunning natural color. Like maple, it has a closed-grain, smooth texture. It is also a mid-level option in terms of cost. One thing to consider with cherry is that, because it is sensitive to light, the color can darken over time. You can choose from a few staining options to bring out the natural beauty of cherry wood:

  • No stain
  • Mission Maple
  • Bing Cherry
  • Mowhawk Cherry


Step 4: Our Team Handcrafts Your Design

Once you’ve specified the size, styles and materials you want for your custom table, your job is now to sit back with anticipation while our team turns your vision into a reality. When you put down your deposit, we’ll begin sending you drawings and samples, so you know exactly what to expect. In some cases, we may provide photos of slabs for you to approve before creating your table.
We’ll create detailed drawings that include your exact specifications and hand this information off to our master craftsmen, who will build your table right here in our Pennsylvania shop. We’ll create your table to match the size, style, finish and any other customization options you’ve chosen, and inspect it carefully to confirm that we’ve constructed it perfectly.

When your project is ready to go, you’ll get to view photos of the finished product. 


custom furniture assembly


Step 5: Your Furniture Arrives and Gets Assembled

Once we’ve completed your table, it’s time for us to send it to you. If you happen to be in the central PA area, you can pick up the table, but we can also ship your table anywhere in the U.S. We will carefully package and crate your table and ship it using your chosen method. We insure all of our shipments for protection and peace of mind.

Packaging your table involves taking pieces apart so it can fit compactly and securely into shipping crates. That means some assembly will be necessary when you receive your table. Before we ship your order, you can choose whether you want to assemble the table yourself or take advantage of our white-glove installation services.

Leaving assembly to the professionals is always the most convenient and fail-safe option, but we design our furniture to come together in just a few simple steps, so you’ll be able to start using your table in no time, whether you opt for professional or DIY installation.

Step 6: Enjoy Office Furniture That Speaks for You

Once you have your custom table all set up, you can start enjoying meetings around it. Whether it’s a get-together with business partners, an interview with a potential new hire, a collaboration session with your team or any other gathering, you’ll know that your conference table will send the right message about your business. A custom conference table can help reinforce your branding and can demonstrate a level of pride in your company and an attention to detail that leaves a lasting impression.

Our staff will check in with you to ensure your table turned out exactly as you had imagined and that it’s working well for your company. Our goal is to give you a conference table you love. You may also want to reach out to us to request other office furniture to match your table or help your conference room and other areas of your workplace become more stylish and functional. Check out our furniture care guide to maintain the newness of your table.

designing conference table

Contact Greg Pilotti Furniture Makers to Request Pricing

At Greg Pilotti Furniture Makers, we combine quality materials, creative designs and master craftsmanship to create stunning conference tables for business. With help from our staff, designing a conference table for your company is a breeze. We’ll walk you through each step of the process and ensure the results thrill you. Contact us today to request pricing.