Ladderback Chair Construction

June 16, 2019 – June 22, 2019

Charlie Ryland

This workshop introduces students to the basics of green woodworking and chair making through the lens of the iconic chair popularized in Jeannie (John) Alexander’s 1978 classic book, Make a Chair from a Tree. Participants learn to design and build chairs using simple tools, time-tested techniques and material taken straight from a freshly felled log. You will split, shave, bend, and assemble a post and rung chair and learn techniques to weave a seat out of natural materials. Discussions include styles and design as well as the place of the hand tool workshop within modern making. Open to all skill levels, though prior experience is helpful. Note: Splitting stock and sitting at a shaving horse for long hours can be physically demanding.


Charlie Ryland is on the faculty in Environmental Humanities at Sterling College in Craftsbury Common, Vermont. He studied Furniture and Cabinet Making at the North Bennet Street School and served an apprenticeship with Windsor chair maker Peter Galbert. Ryland spent a year as an Artist-In-Residence at Arrowmont.

Charlie Ryland

In order to complete your registration, a $300 deposit is required.

  • $250
  • hard copy paper catalog online catalog or course description

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