Being relatively new to woodworking, and having never built a chair,
I've decided to give one a try. Square parts, because I don't have a
lathe, and I'd like to try something with a caned seat, because I've
never done that either. This brings me to my question.
What makes a dining chair a dining chair? Same thing with a vanity
chair, a writing chair, a desk chair, a parlor chair, a porch chair and
the like? Is it just stylistic elements? For instance, do dining
chairs by definition have to have a (back) and a (seat) or certain
geometry or (no) arms or be made of (wood) finished with (finish)?
Let's say I build a chair that I like, but isn't "suited" to my
application? I don't have one in mind right now--in fact, I'll
probably give the first one away if it doesn't go on the firewood pile.
All other things being equal, if by extending this piece a few inches
or finishing with shellac, I get an According-to-Hoyle (type) chair,
why not do that? I know that there are lots of folks who say, "Build
what you like, the hell with the rest of 'em." I, too, am one of those
folks, but there are people out there who've spent a lot more time than
me on this subject, and I'd like to think that a dining chair is a
dining chair for a REASON. If the voices tell me that that reason
makes sense, then I'll try to be faithful to it. If not, I'll "Build
what I like, the hell with the rest of 'em."
Ladies and gentlemen, I await your discourse.
BTW, a Google Search revealed this:
Design a Chair hat Fits like a Glove", FWW Issue #96, Oct 1992, pp
Author Glenn Gordon
Details the construction and use of a chair-fitting rig used by John
who build chairs somewhere in San Francisco, according to the article.
Anyone have this issue who could scan and email or copy and mail? I'd
appreciate it. FWW doesn't carry back issues that far, um, back.