Designing Your Guitar

Where to Start


Designing a custom guitar from scratch, seeing it come together, and then finally playing a guitar designed and build just for you is both exciting and extremely rewarding. Whether you know exactly what you want out of the perfect electric guitar or know you haven’t found it yet and maybe custom is the way to go, we are here to curate the perfect guitar based on your needs, desires, and style.

You are ready for a custom guitar, but where do you start? Whether you’ve worked with a luthier before or not, you realize that the options are nearly infinite.  We’ve created a simple process to guide you towards the most legendary guitar of your dreams.


1.      What’s your Style? The Brainstorm


It is essential in the beginning of the design process not to get too bogged down in the details.  This is your time to brainstorm, have fun with the process, and visualize your dream guitar.  One of our favorite ways to start an electric guitar build is to think about style.  Think of this as the foundation for your build, and it will help guide you through the entire process. Each element of the design will play into the style or theme you envision for your very own Born Custom Guitar®


Tip: You can use our design form and guitar builder to help sort out and visualize options while you are planning how your perfect guitar will look, sound, and feel.


2.      Narrowing Options


Once you’ve have developed a tonal and visual direction for your new custom build, then it’s time to start complementing your new masterpiece with details that will focus in on the vibe you are going for.

When deciding looks go with what makes you smile and feel creative, something that is very passionate and heartfelt, a little sprinkle of this and a pinch of that. A design can be as simple as a sweet vintage white solid-body electric with one pickup and a volume knob to a custom laminate body and neck made of multiple woods, with custom inlays, hand-wound pickups, custom switching, jewel encrusted tuning pegs, and multi-ply double bound binding. The key is that it fits your playing style and feels just right to you. If you are designing a guitar as a gift, then try to take note of the player’s tastes, current guitars, and overall style. You likely know this person very well so focus on their style and preferences for things and you’ll be sure to hit a homerun.


Tip: Keep it simple. Go with a core vibe and tonal direction.


3.      Working with a Luthier (What if I can’t decide what’s best?)


We build your custom guitar on your terms.  While we recommend working closely with Jonathan, our head luthier, to design and shape your guitar into the axe of your dreams, we can also build your custom electric guitar and accessories remotely via email and even text messages. Everyone is different, and all of us have our own strengths, tastes, preferences, and level of experience with guitar and design. We work with a full range of customers from players who know exactly what they want, customers designing a gift for someone special, players who want recommendations and guidance on every detail, to customers who give us full artistic breadth to create a custom guitar based solely on an inspiration.  Our passion is to create the perfect guitar for each player, and we encourage you to utilize our skills and keen attention to detail to help you through the design process.

Tip: Talk to us. Tell us what you like about your favorite guitars. We can pull elements from your favorite instruments and integrate them into your next Born Guitars® build.


4.      Computer Aided Design (CAD), Control Layouts, Custom Inlays & Final Design Approval


Once we’ve worked out the major design elements of your new custom build, then we will provide you with 3D renderings or CAD designs of your future Born Guitar so that you can see what your guitar will look like before even the first piece of wood is cut.  CAD technology allows us to nail down your design with every last detail exactly as you envision it.  Whether you want a specific layout for your custom wood top, want to see exactly how your inlay will fall across the fretboard, or you need your volume knob and other controls in an exact location, all of this is done with ease using our computer aided design (CAD) capabilities. Before we do anything, we get your approval and give you visuals so that you know exactly what you are getting.  Looks are not important to you, and tone and feel are king? No problem, we are happy to provide suggestions that will fit your style or even surprise you with a custom design. Your unique style and personality is what we love, so don’t be afraid to tell us how you want to approach things.


What about feel?


You are in good hands. We hand shape our guitar necks to suit your preferences.  Every guitar we build is made-to-order so that it fits like a glove and is suited perfectly to your playing style, vibe and tonal range.

How do we do that you ask? Well, basically we integrate exactly what you want and need into your guitar. Your guitar is built with only you in mind. We will ask you about your glove size, what neck shapes and styles you currently like and don’t care for. If there is a neck you already love, and you want that feel on your new Born Guitar, then we can match that shape and feel for you.* If you are going for a specific guitar tone or know what pickups you prefer, then we stack up the details to create a dream combination that screams your tone. 

You will absolutely love your custom-built Born guitar and accessories because they are built especially for you from the ground up. I’m always flattered when a customer wants more than one Born Guitar despite the vast array of options out there, but I suppose it’s because we really care about what we do and we pour our heart into every piece we create.


Final Notes


We understand that having the opportunity to work with a luthier to design and build your dream instrument can be very exciting but can also be overwhelming knowing you have to ‘get it right’.  This is why we take our time to understand what you want and need out of your custom build, and we also let our customers know when we think something will not work.  It may seem daunting to try and pick the perfect combination of options but take comfort in know that when everything single aspect is designed around your preferences and style you really can never go wrong.  Rest assured, we always strive for perfection, and while nothing naturally beautiful or handmade is ‘perfect’, our number one priority will always be to make you 100% satisfied with your Born Guitars® Instruments and Accessories. For more information see Our Promise and Warranty Page.


Please Reach out to us anytime! We are always happy to answer your questions, and assist you with your custom design.



0 Items


Your cart is currently empty.

Continue shopping