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Home Page Contact Jim Artistic Vision Furniture Portfolio The Anatomy of a Furniture Project
Jim Marcoux
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Once we have talked out the general parameters of the project, the customer usually wants a rough estimate of cost and time frame. Depending on a variety of factors, I may be able to provide rough estimates on the spot, or I may ask for a couple of days to check material prices and project my labor cost. Every job I do is different and estimating this kind of work is not easy. I want to give you a price that is fair to both of us.

Once I have given you a rough estimate, if the project looks like a go, the next step is for me to provide you a contract specifying a fixed price, and if appropriate, construction drawings. The contract typically includes a listing of all the pertinent details that we have discussed. The contract will also include a payment schedule. On most projects I ask for a deposit of Ĺ the contract price to begin the work with the balance due on completion. On larger projects, I may divide the payments into thirds. After the contract is signed and the deposit check is given, work begins as soon as my schedule allows. You are welcome to visit my shop to see your project in process. The best time to do this is after most of the woodworking is complete and before the finishing begins. If any last minute additions or alterations need to be made this is the time to make them. Seeing your project at this stage seems to be fun for most people. At this visit I will also have finish samples, based on the color and finish that we have already discussed, for you to approve. If the project includes carving, I usually donít draw the patterns until after the piece starts to take shape. I design the carving to fit the space, so if your piece has carvings, I will have the patterns for you to review and approve at this time also. We can pin them directly onto the piece so you can get an idea of how they will look.

Once all of the woodworking is complete, the piece has to be prepared for finishing. Much of this work has been done as the work progressed, but now the whole piece is gone over to make sure everything is ready for finish. This can take a day or two on a typical project. Once everything is ready the finish work begins. Weather can affect the finish schedule. Finish work goes much slower in damp or cold weather. With good weather finishing a typical project might take about four days. If the weather is not cooperating it can take longer.

After the finish work is complete we need to set a time for me to bring you your new piece of furniture. This is a time for al of us to enjoy the results of our labors. The creation of this piece began as your vision. We worked together with a plan to materialize this vision. I used my talents and experience to make the vision a reality and you have helped to support my efforts by paying me to do the work I truly enjoy. Thank you. I hope the piece we created gives you may years of enjoyment.

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