The Windsor chairs and accessories are built using the skills developed by the 18th century craftsmen, constructed by hand with tools long ago forgotten. All turnings, ie: legs, stretchers, arm posts and back posts, as well as the carving is produced in the shop ‘free hand’. Assembly of the piece is by sight line, arms and bows are steam bent from riven green wood in a rather crude but simple devise.
The furniture is completed with a milk paint finish and finally the hallmark is branded on the reverse to clearly indicate this as a reproduction of a period design.
The fascination of Windsor chairs started in the early 1980’s as a collector. Recognizing the strengths and weaknesses in numerous repair jobs and observing how materials and fabrication methods changed through time, became the force to learn more.
Jim’s quest to learn more led him to read many books, attend several classes (some in a dark garage) in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and finally gain recognition into Mike Dunbars, the dean of Windsor chair-makers, Hall of Fame in 1996.
Jim is a member of the Society of American Period Furniture Makers and the Mid-West Tool Collectors Association. You may also find him at a Folk Art Show or doing demonstrations in period costume. The pieces built by Jim are not exact reproduction, but they do however, carry some historical significance, as Wallace Nutting once said, “to improve style and appeal.”
Find out where Jim’s next demonstration will be by Contacting Us