Milling wood for guitar building can save you a lot of money. Wood for guitar back and sides can be milled from large planks if you have the equipment. And if you can find suitable wood. It is also an activity best suited for the strong and fit.
You can either buy large planks from a wood dealer or you can cut the tree yourself. Either way it works best if the planks are at least 2″ thick. This way you can get the graphics you are looking for by cutting it a certain way. Your choices are limited with a thin piece.