I have been making chairs for many years and four years ago decided to make it my full time occupation. I make chairs to commission and have exported chairs to the USA. I learnt my craft with such green woodworking legends as Mike Abbott and Paul Hayden and am keen to pass on these skills to others. My teaching style is collaborative and I'll guide you on your chair making journey with empathy, humour and large quantities of tea! For more about me, see here.
The Chair Making Course are held over five days and you'll learn all the skills needed to make your very own chair to take away at the end. You do not need any previous experience and all timber and tools will be provided. The chair you'll make is a simple spindle back frame chair (see here) with a woven seat in danish cord. Due to the methods used to dry the wooden components you'll fashion joints that require no glue or wedges. Such is the magic of green woodworking!
You'll use traditional hand tools including drawknife, froe and spokeshave, and develop skills such as cleaving, shaving, tenoning, steam bending and weaving. You'll also experience that wonder of low tech, the shavehorse (see picture below). During the first two days you'll make the chair's components, assemble your chair over the next two days and on the final day you'll weave a seat.
Apart from the obvious aim of completing a chair to take home, the course is intended to be a memorable experience in the beautiful Suffolk countryside with like minded individuals, enjoying the peace and tranquility that green woodworking offers.
Lunch will be provided each day, consisting of soup, bread (homemade if you're lucky!) and cheese, or something similar. Please see the links page for local places to stay. I can also provide local knowledge of pubs, restaurants, etc..
Course dates 2020
11th to 15th May - fully booked
15th to 19th June - one place left!
13th to 17th July
Dates for August and September will be posted soon.
I can arrange bespoke courses for a minimum of 2 people. Please contact me here
Cost is £400 per person for group courses including all timber and materials
Cost is minimum of £450 per person for bespoke courses
All dates inclusive, lunch and copious quantities of tea, coffee and cake provided
Courses will each be for a maximum of four students to ensure you get the personal attention you deserve.
For more information please contact Stewart Goldie-Morrison here or call 07795 346026 and for accommodation please see here
Green woodworking is such a pleasure and also an endangered traditional craft and it is very important that these skills are shared and preserved. My courses are held at my workshop in Cretingham, near Framlingham in Suffolk.
"Zen and the art of chair making. Relax, relax some more and end up with your own hand made chair. Under Stewart's calm, patient, attentive instruction you can't fail to make a beautiful chair. With the help of the beautiful Suffolk countryside, some like-minded souls, Bel's lunches, Fin and Flea's encouragement (their dogs) this is a totally immersive tonic for the soul. Can't recommend it enough."
Steve H, May 2018
"I have just spent a fantastically enjoyable, informative and, to my amazement, successful five days with some great people on Stewart's Chair-Making Course. As a total novice when it came to green-wood working, there was a lot to learn and tasks to perform in order to complete the project, but the atmosphere created was very calm and relaxed, and I had as much guidance as I needed when the inevitable questions came up. It was good not to have to aim for perfection, but to look at and go with what the wood offered. Apart from the enjoyment and skills I learned on the course, what did I actually achieve ? Well, I suppose the final word should come from the wife when I brought the fruits of my labours home. Simply - "WOW !!"