Have you ever read one of our live edge slab item descriptions that mentioned the term “bookmatched” and wondered, “What in the world does that mean?” Well, today we are going over the term and what it means for your live edge slab.
What Is A Bookmatched Slab?
A bookmatched slab is a set of at least two slabs – often more – that, when joined and glued, make up one tabletop. When done correctly, a pair of bookmatched slabs should look much like an open book.
The basic idea is to find slabs that match each other well, typically with nearly mirrored grain structure. A very common way to achieve this symmetrical look is by using slabs that have been cut from the same log.
Why Would You Bookmatch A Slab?
A question that comes up a lot is, “Why would you bookmatch a slab rather than keep it whole?” While there are a lot of answers to this question, the most common is to be able to offer table tops at larger widths. If you were to use the slabs in a bookmatched set separately, they would have been much too small for a standard table.
Another great reason to bookmatch slabs is to offer a more customizable width. Since the inner edges on these sets are already cut straight, there is no reason why they couldn’t be cut again to get you a perfectly sized table for your needs.
Bookmatched slabs are also a good idea if you are looking for a wider tabletop that will be more resistant to warping. By cutting a slab’s width, you are incidentally also freeing up additional stress within the pith – an area commonly known to warp.
Probably one of the most desirable reasons to look at a bookmatched slab rather than a single slab in the same size is the fact that it often has a smaller price tag. Since the two slabs come from smaller and more commonly found trees than a single slab of the same size, it keeps the cost low.