Custom table pads have been around for about 100 years. For the most part, they haven't changed. They are, always have been, and always will be the only product that can properly protect dining tables and other furniture against scratches, stains, spills, dents and other types of damage. As long as furniture is made of fine wood, this is not likely to ever change.
Up until the early 80’s, homeowners like you could have purchased one from a local distributor running a local newspaper ad. You would have contacted that distributor to come to your home to measure, make a pattern of your table, show you color swatches and submit your order to one of several factories in the country.
My name is David Berger, Founder of Berger’s. I started out as one of these distributors, running local ads in Indianapolis and making appointments to measure tables and submit and take orders. I was so busy I could hardly keep up.
After 3-4 months of this hectic schedule, I had an idea that tables could be measured by the customer through a do-it-yourself kit. I experimented by running newspaper ads in other cities and sending kits. It worked! That was the beginning of mail/phone order table pads. It’s now the primary way homeowners purchase them. The main difference today is that most people search online rather than respond to newspaper ads, which are practically non-existent today.
I was doing so much volume, my supplier couldn’t keep up with my demand. If I wanted to continue with that same or even greater volume, I would have to start up my own factory. It took a year, but that’s what happened. Today, Berger’s is the largest supplier of table pads to homeowners in the country.
Over the years, Berger’s created 3 other major manufacturing and or marketing innovations within the table pad industry:
- The ability to digitize table patterns electronically and to send these images to a CNC routing machine to cut them perfectly, regardless of size and shape. We are the only factory that has such innovation. The others still cut out table pads manually with table saw and band saws, same as 100 years ago. Our method, although initially quite costly to install, has saved us a great deal of labor cost over the years, making our product more price competitive than our competition.
- The creation of invisible, 100% user-friendly, patented magnetic locks to help secure table pad pieces together when in use. Other locking devices are not user-friendly and are exposed, making it very easy to scratch the table surface when removing the pads from the table. Also, because they are not concealed, it is common for them to pull loose or break off over time, rendering them useless. Magnetic locks will not lose their magnetism for up to 100 years. To date, we have never had such a report.
- The ability to make table pads with a solid inner-core as opposed to layered material glued or stitched together, as is still primarily used in the industry today. Layered pads have a propensity to entrap moisture from humidity that can cause odor, or even mildew. They can’t be stored upright without eventually bowing or sagging. Our single core pad can be stored upright, thereby saving valuable storage space. It is also lighter in weight.