Design Approach

fanGood chair design combines comfort and aesthetics together with strong engineering. In my chair designs, notice the negative spaces created by the individual parts. The space between the front legs form a trapezoid (a 4 sided rectangle with one set of parallel lines), the seat and floor are the parallel lines. The space formed with the arm rests is also a trapezoid; between spokes and rear upper legs.  As you walk around the chair all these trapezoids change shapes but they’re still 4 sided with one set of roughly parallel lines. Now, when you look from the top down all those lines turn into curves. The seat is 1/2 an ellipse, oval, like the table top. Moving up the chair to the arms and the ellipse widens a bit and all the way at the top, the crest rail is an arc (part of a circle). Together, these linear lines of the trapezoid and ellipses are like the keys to a piano. together they make a harmony that works.fan7

The chair frame and legs gain their strength from the feather-jointed corner blocks in the frame. Each corner block consists of up to 36” of linear glue surface (up to 6 rows of tongue and groove joinery). The strength provided by the corner blocks eliminates the need for rungs between the legs.

Chair LegsI use American cherry, maple, walnut and Honduras mahogany wood that highlight the design of the table and chairs. I am more concerned with woods that highlight the design rather than the design showcasing the wood. I have made the chairs out of high figure wood and it results in a powerful looking statement.

The attention I pay to detail can be seen in the way I cut the wood. For example, by placing the legs top-to-top on a board, I’m able to ensure that the grain of the wood in the legs, when attached to the chair, will reflect one another. You can see the beauty of this effect in the accompanying photos showing the chair legs and the top of the chair. The paired parts become mirror images of each other.

Cherry wood log I have started stocking logs cut for table tops and have presently a walnut, Tiger maple, high figured and low figured cherry logs. These, as well as others can be ordered from Horizon Woods in Pennsylvania .  Digital images are available from Horizon’s web page before purchasing. The 2 images shown here are from my high figured cherry log.