why do they bookmatch veneers and dont just use a solid piece of wood? thanks

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For a good look for a fraction of the cost.
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Book-matching is all about symmetry.

Things can more interesting and pleasing to the eye, when they're symmetrical.
You could just take a repeated grain pattern, and shift it over,
but mirroring it looks better.
Picture, thousand words, blah, blah. blah.

Single piece of burled ash:

Shifted pattern:


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Personally I dont like that effect ^ I would rather it was one peice of burl, random across the entire body. On book match burl there is like 1 central grain pattern, and then the rest is unfigured, where as with quilts and flames the pattern is alot more uniform accross the whole veneer so you notice the join alot less.

But yeh bookmatching is mostly about cost. You take a smaller peice of matterial cut it in half, open it out look a book and you've got double the surface area of patter. To find the same quality pattern over such a large area of a 1 peice top is going to cost you, if you can find it at all.

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