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Welsh chair making course

Welsh chair making course

Course Provider: Make in theWoods

Contact Name: Marcus Tiddy and Jane Willmott

Telephone: 0795 009 8855

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Collaford Wood

Course Length: 7 days

Price: £495

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Course Start Dates
Course dates are flexible; please get in touch for the next available date.


Making a chair course in Totnes.

Making your first chair is utter brilliant chaos, we will teach, guide, console, feed, commiserate, laugh, help, and even hug you as you pass through this rights of passage to produce something that will make you smile forever.

All the green wood skills are involved, starting with cleaving your chair components from the round tree, through sideaxing, using an Adze, a drawknife, rounding planes, scrapers, brace and bits and steambending. You will experience intense amounts of focus and also the release of companion working. When you finish you will have planted a seed of satisfaction gained from quenching the need to make.

The Makers and Teachers

Simon Shields:
Having worked with Ben Law, (he of the infamous Channel 4 ‘Grand Designs’), Simon has run many making courses with all walks of life, from five year old school children to many green field appearances. He has spent the last six years perfecting his timber framing skills with the legendary Carpenter Oak timber framers as a team leader. He now is ready to pass on these making skills through the medium of green woodworking.

Marcus Tiddy:
A life in creative based employment has led to Marcus taking up furniture making, focusing on a passion for Welsh traditional stick back chairs and ‘hedgerow’ chair making. Helped along by the expert eye of Mike Abbott, Marcus has honed his skills over the last ten years. He has had many high end commissions for his chairs and shares his passion with his partner in life, Jane Willmott. He now spends his life working the woods and looking after one of the near by farms which is currently in Higher Level Stewardship.

Jane Willmott:
A life spent in conservation, from the outback to the Himalayas on projects as diverse has water vole re-introduction, with wildlife legend, Derek Gow to none native species eradication in sensitive areas of the Australian outback, Jane realised the need to settle down and to make, she shares her passion for Welsh stick chairs with Marcus and has had her own high end commissions. She splits her time between being Mum, woodland conservation, and her flourishing native grown
flower business, Blackawton Blooms.

Nick Kary:
Nick is a maker and philosopher. A life spent making for a diverse range of people from discerning clients to Conrans gives him a unique perspective on the creative making process. He runs courses to put you in contact with your need to make, he writes poetry, he bakes in his tremendous bread oven and lives life with a passion. Over the last 10 years he has increasingly used his love of wood and words to facilitate and teach. Wood and words, trees and people, material and ethereal, it is here he loves increasingly to dwell.

Ben H. Fielding: Bowmaker
Starting a ‘wood life’ on the Lancashire Estates working the trees, Ben moved on to study sculpture at Edinburgh gaining a love of all things moving. Now ensconced in the hedgerows of Devon, Ben has spent the last seven years practicing the ancient art of bow making, combining his love of kinetic sculpture with the practicalities of the woodsman.

What's included in the price?

All tools are provided, though if you would like to bring your own you are very welcome.
Price includes all materials EXCEPT your Elm seat, food is by a 'kitty and cook' scheme run by the students.
There is a small charge for camping in the woods, please get in touch for full details.
Tea, coffee and a hot shower are all free

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