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A new direction

Over ten months since my last blog entry would have to be some kind of record.

Unfortunately, the minute and detailed kumiko work has played havoc on my eyes, and the eyestrain has got the better of me. The almost constant headaches were also starting to affect my enjoyment of woodwork.

So I’ve decided to branch out in a new direction — one that doesn’t involve quite as many small pieces of wood.

Making a rocking chair has always been on my bucket list, and rather than reinventing the wheel and trying to come up with my own rocking chair design, after I came back from Japan in 2009 I bought a set of plans from
Hal Taylor, a well-known and long-time rocking chair maker in Virginia. He has been improving on his rocking chair design for over 20 years, resulting in extremely comfortable chairs that provide tremendous and highly flexible back support.

That’s what I have been doing for the past few months, and this is my latest chair. It is a small rocking chair, and is made from a single board of Queensland maple, with a silver ash feature strip in the rockers. It can’t be seen in the back braces, but they are laminated with a single Qld maple lamination in the front, two silver ash laminations in the middle, and a red cedar lamination at the back. They flex, and are able to move within their respective holes in the seat and headrest, and this provides the comfortable back support.

Queensland maple rocking chair

Queensland maple rocking chair

These rocking chairs are for sale, and the prices for the time being will be as follows.

Queensland maple
Small: $2,500
Medium: $2,600
Large: $2,800

The price of chairs in other timber types will be adjusted to reflect the price of that particular timber. These prices don’t include shipping.

Over the next few weeks I’ll be rearranging my website to include additional details of the rocking chairs and quite a few more photos.

All the shoji and kumiko pages and sections will remain, and over time I’ll put up some more information in there as well.