Mistakes

I fix a lot of chairs. They come to me when the seat fails but usually they need more. When the seat is removed I fix the loose joints, clean them up, and reweave a new seat. I enjoy bringing a chair back to life and it allows me to study many different chairs and see how they age.

Recently I had a set of ten Hans Wegners come through the shop and while working on them I began thinking about a subject that craftspeople like to avoid.

Mistakes

I found this one at the top of a chair leg.

Oops! Looks like a misplaced mortise that has been filled. Repairs that require matching end grain can be nearly impossible to hide so in this case the best fix would have been a new leg. I was surprised to see something like this on a Wegner.

I’ve become pretty good at fixing mistakes because I make them all of the time. I probably shouldn’t admit to it but a good repair of a mistake is something to be proud of. But often times a mistake doesn’t need a repair at all. It only needs a change of terminology. It’s not a mistake; it’s a design change.

David

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One response to “Mistakes

  1. I attended the Society of Period Furniture Makers mid year conferance in Lancaster ,Pa.two years ago………I by no means measure up to meny of these craftsman.but while wondering around the furniture display area.stoped to listen in on a discussion going on about a Phildelpca card table(great piece of period work) on display…….what a revelation.the craftsman who built the masterpiece was showing an admirer the location on his table of a mistake..and described how he repaired and kept on building…this was a revelation to me.a member of SPFM but not near most in craft ability….bottom line.this gentleman craftsman was not assamed to admit errror……made me feel human sinse I make meny .BOB LINDH,furniture maker,W.PA.

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