By Simi Sinha
Saratoga Table Works grew out of a hobby. Three
years ago Rod Bower’s wife, Darlene Bower, wanted
a big table for her patio. The Air Force veteran had
a history of renovating properties and taking on
handy projects, so he took to his tools and some
extra silo wood to build a table that could comfortably
seat 10 people.
Saratoga Table Works, 153 Goode Street Burnt
Hills, was born of Darlene Bower’s encouragement
and their guests’ appreciation of the handcrafted
Rod Bower started out in the IT industry, but working with wood gave him “a real satisfaction.” He reclaims wood from barns, silos, and buildings and takes an artistic pleasure in finding ways to “clean them up and reuse them” as custom furniture pieces. A majority of his custom orders are requests to replicate expensive designer pieces, a challenge he enjoys pursuing and produces at a fraction of the cost.
He still dabbles in the IT field, mainly “to offset my bills,” but notes that table making is quickly becoming “a real full time job.”
Business started slow in 2011 and early 2012, but in 2013, said Bower, “I’ve already made as much as I did in 2012.”
Business is growing and he is looking to expand beyond his home workspace.
“What I really want is, I’m hoping that by next year (to have) a place where I can have a retail front and a workshop in the same property.” This would allow Bower to showcase more of his custom pieces and reach a wider audience.
Bower relies on word of mouth, Facebook and advertisement in local publications to garner attention for his business and pull in more orders.
He feels he is “on the cusp of it really taking off.” The Saratoga Table Works’ Facebook page offers regular photo updates of his latest projects. A quick scroll through shows an appreciative and satisfied clientele, as well as many custom requests. It is his keen attention to detail and passion for turning reclaimed wood and metal into works of art that keeps his customers happy and asking for more. When he isn’t inundated by a steady stream custom orders, Bower creates extra pieces to sell in area shops, online and in the Vermont region, where he also acquires lumber for his projects.
Bower hopes to expand into e-commerce. He wants to work with other craftsman to produce a higher volume of custom pieces to be distributed on a national level. He will still “focus on the farm table look, reclaimed wood look.”
Saratoga Table Works offers a range of custom furniture, including tables, fireplace mantles, center islands, benches and bar top slabs. Some of his most popular pieces are wine racks, often ordered as wedding gifts.
For more information, visit www.saratogatableworks. com or contact Bower at 466-6722 or e-mail at Rodb@SaratogaTableWorks.com.