The Story of the Fountain Brook Chair

The Guild of Vermont Furniture Makers “Current Work” exhibition at the Vermont State House – running through October 21, 2016 – features a lot of impressive furniture by our members. Here is the story of one of those pieces: The Fountain Brook Chair by John Lomas.

“I designed the Fountain Brook dining chair to be simple, elegant and comfortable. But every component is shaped and curved, so it’s not an easy chair to make.

The lumbar supports are made from a sandwich of three thin slices of Cherry covered with bookmatched Bubinga veneers front and back. The lamination for the slats is done with stout cauls, which are pressed together in the vacuum bag, as shown in photo 1. The veneers that are added to the outer surfaces of the laminates are shown in photo 2. Once the lamination is complete, the slats have to be shaped and joined to the upper and lower rails. This is quite tricky, because the tops of the slats meet a curved rail at a compound angle.

The third photo shows the jigs that are required just to shape the back legs or uprights. Then there are further jigs to shape the front legs and to curve all the rails. Lots of planning and preparation in chair-making.

There’s alot going on, but that’s what keeps it interesting to make and, I hope you agree, nice to look at.” 

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