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Design/Project Table Ideas

Stan Dick

Grumbler in Training
Hi Everyone:
I have always appreciated the knowledge and advice shared on this site. I am looking for some ideas in order to build, (or to have one built for me), a large Design/Project table with the stipulation that I have mat storage/dividers underneath to save space. I would appreciate some pics of frame shop furniture that accomplishes this goal.


Forum Support Team
Team member
Forum Donor
Will you use it in the work shop, or retail space?

For work shop, make sure it is not too wide. You want to be able to reach so you can touch everything on the table.
My work table is huge, but access on three sides. It is also my fitting table. One corner is removed to fit my underpinner. So the table height is same as Underpinner.
I use the shelves for customers art, to store.
I have two large units to store mats. One unit is single height but the top of that is too high to use as work table.


PFG, Picture Framing God
Our main design table is low so that people can look down at the artwork and the frame samples and mats.
It also has a drawer underneath the front that has all of the mat samples in racks by color.
The other side of the design table on the back has 5 art storage drawers that are each about 3" tall for some of the artwork that is waiting to be worked on.
The art storage drawers are numbered and we also have another high table with art storage drawers numbered in the back area and also art is stored in vertical slots in another rack.

The main thing with us is having the main design table low so people can take pictures of design concepts and look down to see the whole design easily.

I remember "back in the day" when we had design tables that had an angled mirror over the top.
The client could step back and you could lay the artwork on the top of the table and adjust the angle of the mirror so they could step back and kind of view the artwork as if it was on a wall...(except it would be reversed)
Not upside down because you could just place the artwork upside down but the left and right would be reversed.
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Jim Miller

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Forum Donor
These tables are built out of 1/2" and 3/4" MDF, and the newer ones are melamine-covered. Since they slide together like a 3-D puzzle, they can be disassembled and moved easily...but unloading and reloading the stored materials is a lot of work.

The table with embedded matcutter (left photo) has 4 ft. of vertical matboard storage bins and 4 ft. of shallow shelves on both sides. The mounting table (right photo with recessed dry mount press) also has vertical bins, bu wider and deeper for glass and foam boards, plus shallow pull-outs for small tools & supplies.

Side view work table 1.jpg Side view work table 2.jpg

Stan Dick

Grumbler in Training
All of you, thank you so much for your insights and comments. I will consider them all as I reconfigure my shop and work flow. I recently had some mechanical problems with my CMC and quickly purchased a 48 inch manual mat cutter which is now claiming my precious previous fitting table. I am being forced to come up with a new work surface as I want to have the manual mat cutter available at all times even though my CMC is now repaired. As all of you know, it is a lot of work to redesign or reconfigure your work space and I don't want to go through all the work and not have it fulfill my needs.
Thank you again!


MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Our finishing table is made of 3/4” MDF, with Masonite dividers.
Each side is made of three identical boxes with mat dividers.
There is a space between the two sides, for extra glass storage.
The top is a double layer of 3/4” MDF. 507D3D96-DBF2-4074-A177-99EFCE59E4A8.jpeg BAB83087-10E3-4066-8D23-E3ECCD3442A1.jpeg FFED611D-93D2-4F86-BD05-3B47174E4E97.jpeg E760105A-DA2D-480C-8352-A494FA38070C.jpeg 360CC657-420E-4D82-88DA-18AC939F11BE.jpeg 5F23D718-E631-48B2-AABE-3BEF05DF5689.jpeg