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Chairs to make and mend
We make and mend chairs like windsor chairs and stick chairs, working green wood, drying it and making up the chair. We find that if you use techniques and tools and material and methods in a roughly similar way to the way windsor chairs were made in the 19th and early 20th centuries, you don`t get a reproduction so much as a re-working.
At least an old chair can be kept honest. Many families have a chair that is a link to the past and needs sympathetic treatment.
We make up some chair parts in the manner of the “bodgers” who worked in the coppiced woodlands but we don`t make them by the thousand – only as many as we need to make our next chair. We use scotch-elm (wych-elm) for seats. It`s perhaps not quite so unsplittable as English elm (very little left, especially here in the north) but it has the advantage of being much lovelier to look at.
At our prices we can`t afford to be too local with resources.
Wood is heavy: most of ours is local. Rush and tape for stick chair seats, on the other hand, can be sent through the post. Such materials are generally more acceptable than the rope or plank seats common in the north before transport was improved.
Ash and beech, both common here, make good chair parts too. Sometimes oak and occasionally yew are available locally.
We use a modern glue for new chairs but we`re capable of using traditional pearl glue to mend an old chair.
Natural oils and waxes also link us to the traditional.