From the time my brothers and I were toddlers until just recently, our mother kept the same banquette. The dining booth had to be at least thirty years old, and showed it. The cushions were flat and threadbare, with frayed edges, tears and tons of food stains. My brothers and I continually urged our mother to buy a new banquette, but she could never find anything she liked. She insisted that current furniture is constructed of sub par materials, extravagant and generic looking. Plus, her kitchen is small and needs an oddly sized banquette to seat everyone comfortably. She didn’t want a dining table and we couldn’t find anything which met with her approval. After listening to our mother tell us repeatedly about her requirements for a banquette, my brothers and I were able to work with a custom furniture designer. It was a genuinely interesting and detailed process. The banquette was entirely built in-house, which offered us a say in the dimensions, style, fabric and detailing. Custom built furniture is quite a bit more fancy than an item purchased at a department store. There’s also a lengthy wait for the item to be constructed. Fortunately, my brothers and I shared the expense and we were able to get the banquette in time for Christmas. The custom furniture shop was extremely helpful. My brothers and I got our mother out of the house, and the furniture shop delivered the couch and set it up while we were gone. They even put a huge red ribbon on the new banquette and hauled the aged dining booth away. It was a beautiful surprise for our mother; she was elated. The banquette is obviously well made and of superior quality, so much so it makes the rest of the furniture look seasoned and shabby. My brothers and I now want to order a matching island for Mom’s birthday.