The Customization Process

We offer a number of standard trays, such as the Boone, which have been carefully designed to fit a wide range of objects and tools, but we know not everyone has the same preferences or uses.

We're currently working on developing software that will let you design basic trays in your browser, but for more complex designs, we offer a custom design service that begins with a simple sheet of paper.

1. Layout

Arrange your objects on a standard 8.5 x 11 inch sheet of printer paper as you want them to be on your tray. Take a pencil or pen and trace around each object. If you'd prefer, you can leave the object in place instead of tracing around it.

Hand tracing around a phone on a piece of paper 

2. Partition

Indicate where you'd like the partitions between the objects. Don't worry, you don't have to be an artist to do this. Your squiggliest, most crooked lines are still welcome. If you'd prefer to leave step to us, we'll put in the partitions between the objects.

Drawing borders around objects

3. Send Sketch

Take a photo of the sketch you made. Center your phone directly above the page so it's as square as possible. Send the completed sketch to

Taking a photo of the sketch

4. 3D Modeling

After receiving your beautiful artwork, we use CAD software to make a 3D model of your masterpiece. This model is used to generate drawings for your approval and to program our in-house CNC router to carve out the tray.

Creating a CAD file for a Panoply Custom Tray

5. Verification

Before we begin making your tray, you'll receive a PDF drawing of the design which you can print out to get a life-size representation of your tray.

An ink-jet printer printing out a to-scale drawing of a tray

After printing your tray drawing, you can test the layout.

Image of a phone, knife, keys, flashlight, and lighter on a sheet of paper

6. Manufacturing

With your approval, the manufacturing process begins! A piece of the selected wood is sawn to size and planed flat on one side.

Man planing a piece of wood on a workbench

Next, the wood billet is loaded onto the CNC router which carves out the pockets to the dimensions specified. This process can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour depending on the size and complexity of the tray and the species of wood being used.

CNC Router carves a Panoply Custom Tray

After the routing process is complete, the finishing process begins. This involves using surgically-sharp hand planes to remove shavings only 1/1000th of an inch thick, giving the wood a glassy-smooth texture and bringing out its grain. Lastly, a mixture of beeswax and mineral oil is applied which protects the wood and brings out the beauty of the grain.Man applies oil to a wooden tray

Next it's off to the post office!

If you have any questions about the process, we'd love to chat. Drop us a line at to learn more.