I was inspired by Paul Ruhlman’s video to make this rustic chair, though mine has a couple unique twists. This was a fun project and has a lot in common with traditional windsor chair making. the chair is ample in proportions, about 20-21″ wide. It now sits in my office at work next to my desk where visitors use it, and it makes a great conversation starter.
The chair is made from saplings, ash and maple (mostly red maple). The arms are walnut, and the seat is woven from simulated rush (twisted kraft paper).
The fit is less than precise in this chair. I used epoxy to be sure that any gaps and irregularities were filled and to allow myself plenty of open time.
The front legs are mortised through the arms, and then wedged with a contrasting walnut wedge.
I picked stretchers in part for interesting shapes that would still align well enough to form a decent tenon. 7/8" oak dowels were used for the seat rails for strength and straightness. They are completely covered by the rush but make for a more consistent seating and weaving platform.
All mortise-and tenon joints were pegged using bamboo skewers. The back legs, the back cross members, and the spindles were all eased into a better shape with steam bending.