The Mojo has been missing for a while. I’ve put it down to being busy collecting fire wood, and a myriad of other necessary distractions, thus not having enough time to devote to what it is I enjoy most. As a result I’ve been prowling around like a bear with a mouth full of wasps and, at day’s end, feeling dissatisfied.
Today was a very wet day, and, having been busy all weekend, I found myself with a whole day to myself, to do as I wanted. So, I made some good coffee and wandered out to my workshop. I had no real plan, other than to just sit with all the lovely lengths of Hazel, Ash, Willow, Beech and Birch, and maybe think about a new project. I have a number of chairs waiting to be made, but I felt like something different; a bit of experimentation and some larks.
I dug out some old off-cuts and pondered them for a while. My time was limited, to just today, so decided to make a child’s chair, and to keep it simple, using only the materials in front of me. Also, a change of style – a variation of John Surlis’ Leitrim Chair.
I set to. The idea forming was simply to make the seat and legs, and see how it went. I was going to use wedges to secure the legs into the seat, and leave everything with the bark on – as this was just a practice run, and a learning curve type jobbie, I allowed myself to work quickly, and adjust things on the fly (not something that usually works for me).
I got on well so decided to push on with the backrest. Initially this was going to be a standard back, but, I got a little flighty and decided to do something a little different – making adjustments as I went. I’m not brilliant at angles, but today they came together reasonably well for me, and I am happy with the result……
Not to shabby from the rear either…..
And the wedges in the legs turned out ok…….
There’s a lot of final shaping, sanding, waxing, and general tidying up still to do, and I will, but, for a practice piece, I’m very happy with the result. It’s sturdy enough to stand on, and would come in handy in a bar brawl.
I learnt quite a bit from my few hours making this chair, the tenons, the angles, the lengths of differing pieces, the wedges, how I’ll shape the seat in future, and the order I’ll do things in. So, to my mind, a day well spent, and, a new style of chair to lose myself in, and experiment with in the days, weeks, months, and years to come.
The chair seat is 11 inches high, and the back rail sits at 22 inches. The seat is 8 inches wide at the rear, and 14 at the front.
When sanded and waxed, the colours in the bark on each of the different pieces will be quite gorgeous.