Matching Grain Is Worth The Effort

Many of my projects require glued-up hardwood panels. The trick is to make the panel look like a single, wide piece of wood. A bad match of grain can be really distracting, as you can see in the photo, below left. But by carefully matching the grain, the glue joints practically disappear, giving the entire project a more professional look.  

To start with, I always look for boards with the same general type of grain patterns. I flip as many boards as possible over and spin them end for end to see if I can find grain that matches.
Bad Match
One of the boards above has a figured spot where an intersecting branch grew. 
It clashes with the straight grain

Good Match
Even though the color varies slightly, the grain in the two boards matches much better in this orientation.

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