Designing and Building Chairs
Best of Fine Woodworking

215 x 275mm

Published by Taunton Press, CT, USA


ISBN 1-56158-857-1

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The Three-Slat Chair

Arts and Crafts Style

Slim, Comfortable Slip Seat

Light Settee in Cherry

Post-and-Rung Stool





As reviewed in The Australian Woodworker Issue 132

We live in a society where chairs are plentiful. We generally expect to be able sit down just about everywhere we are - whether it's at home, in a theatre or stadium, in cars, buses, trains, trams, ferries, airplanes...

Why then are there so many uncomfortable chairs? The problem is that despite the number of chairs that are made, making one that is strong, durable and comfortable is not all that easy.

This collection of articles has been drawn from past issues of Fine Woodworking with the express purpose of helping you to make better chairs. It collects together the ideas and work of some of America's top designers and makers - including such legendary contributors to modern woodworking as Sam Maloof and James Krenov.

The book is divided into three sections. The first, which occupies some 30 odd pages, contains 8 articles on subjects ranging from Compound-Angle Joinery and Shaping the Arm of a Chair, to Jigs for Joints on Curving Parts and Working Green Wood.

The second section - another 30 or so pages - is devoted to making chair seats. There's an article about Carving a Softwood Seat and another about Sculpting Chair Seats with a Shop-Built Duplicator. There is also an article about Weaving a Cane Seat and one about Weaving Shaker Tape Seats.

The third section, which takes up the rest of the book, contains six projects - A Light Settee in Cherry, Post-and-Rung Stool, Shaker Rocker, Oval Chippendale Stool, Bowback Windsor Step by Step and The Shaker Revolver.

Woodworkers who choose to make chairs soon find that they have embarked upon an odyssey that leads them into arcane alleyways of the craft. This book should help to provide some guidance on their journey.

Photos: Colour

Units of Measurement: Imperial



Section 1 - Chair Making Basics

Chair Making Simplified
- Garret Hack

Compound-Angle Joinery
- Will Neptune

Working Green Wood
- Harriet Hodges

Shaping the Arm of a Chair
- Sam Maloof

Building a Basic Stool
- Harriet Hodges

Jigs for Joints on Curving Parts
- Brian Boggs

Built for Comfort: The Three-Slat Chair
- Christian H. Becksvoort

Building a Chair, Arts and Crafts Style
- Rex Alexander

Section 2 - Making Chair Seats

Sculpting Chair Seats with a Shop-Built Duplicator
- Dan Trimble

A Slim, Comfortable Slip Seat
- Michael Fortune

Carve a Softwood Seat
- Curtis Buchanan

Weaving a Cane Seat
- Judy Warner

Coopering a Chair Seat
- Charles Argo

Weaving Shaker Tape Seats
- Glenn A. Carlson

Section 3 - Projects

A Light Settee in Cherry
- Matthew Teague

Post-and-Rung Stool
- Brian Boggs

Shaker Rocker
- Ernie Conover

Oval Chippendale Stool
- Randall O'Donnell

Bowback Windsor Step by Step
- Harriett Hodges

The Shaker Revolver
- Mario Rodriguez


Shaker Rocker

Oval Chippendale Stool

Shaker Revolver