hannahbardinfurniture
A Newby From Philly :)
Mon Mar 24, 2014 11:32am
69.253.203.247

Hello, Chair Caning Forum! I'm new, and just got on the site to ask my first question when I saw this thread and thought it would be the best place to insert an introduction. I have actually been consulting this forum quite a bit in the last few months and am so glad to have found out about it.

My name is Hannah and I am 26, from North Carolina but live in Philadelphia. I am a woodworker and attend furniture-making classes part time. I began chair caning a little over a year ago (certainly not a caning veteran, as so many of you are) as a means of [meager] income. A furniture-maker friend-of-a-friend in Asheville, NC worked for Brian Boggs, a somewhat well-known chair-maker, showed me a chair he had made with a woven splint seat. "Hey, that's really cool," I thought to myself. Not long afterward, I googled "chair caning philadelphia," or something of the sort, and found a couple who have been doing it locally for 20+ years. I called them up, said I was a stranger interested in chair caning. They invited me over and set me up with some fine cane, a wet sponge, and a giant seat. It took me about a week. But I didn't give up, and in fact ended up working for them part-time for about a year!

It was a few months ago that I decided to begin my own independent seat weaving business. The couple who taught me were most encouraging of it, as they seem to have more than enough business in the city. I have recently moved into a small studio space, where I aim to slowly build up a modest woodworking shop for myself, and make ends meet through my weaving skills, which are slowly but surely improving. I was never able to do any rushing up until a few months ago. Actually, my first few practice chairs didn't look as bad as I thought they would, though I still haven't figured out how to master the corners/tension completely. I guess it comes with experience.

I find it is slow getting my name out, but I have now had a few customers and am working on better ways to promote my business and build a reputation. (I know. I really should advertise on the Seat Weaver's Guild.) It's a slow process, but I have low monthly living costs, which helps. I keep a positive attitude!

So that's how I got started!

OK, I am going to proceed above to make an entirely new post. It's nice to virtually meet you all. And thank you for all your helpful tips!


  • How did ya'll get into this wonderful craft/business of chair caning, anyway? Please post your story. Most of you already know my entry into the field, but I'll post it again here anyway for those of ... more
    • Re: How did you get started...? Mr. Stafford, Thu Aug 10 9:44pm
      Hello all, My name is Mr. Stafford and I fell into my first chair caning project about four years ago. I had been a woodworker and professional musician for about 25 years and I had just started to... more
      • how did you get started? ediezalas, Fri Aug 11 9:13am
        First off I am one of those people that when I see some handiwork or artwork the first thing I think isn't 'how much is it' it's 'how did they do that and can I do it too?' That being said, I had a... more
      • How did you all get started? jbmeltzer, Fri Aug 11 8:43am
        I was teaching macrame (remember that?) at a local art center, and someone else was teaching caning. We traded skills, and I was off and running! Beyond that, I am self-taught, mostly by using Jim... more
      • How I got started Anderson's Restorations-Rob, Fri Aug 11 7:08am
        I used to have a refinishing business and a real nice older gentleman did my caning for me. One day his wife called that he passed and did I want his material. I had just taken in 4 chairs so I said... more
    • Picture with me, a cold, snowy January Saturday in 1975 ( 3 months after discharge from the US Army). Barbara and I have just completed the 2 hour drive to the home of her grandparents. For our chair ... more
    • how i got started f.david, Tue Mar 25 9:56am
      Well I have been caning for around 7 years and I do enjoy it. I am not to proud of where I learned, I got into some trouble with the law about 10 years ago and did some time in the NH state prison... more
      • Re: how i got started The Wicker Woman, Tue Mar 25 10:22am
        Hi Dave, Welcome to the Chair Caning Forum! It doesn't matter what the circumstances were regarding your learning of the craft, but rather that you learned it and have been making something good come ... more
        • thx f.david, Tue Mar 25 10:49am
          Thx for the kind words and advice. Dave
    • A Newby From Philly :) hannahbardinfurniture, Mon Mar 24 11:32am
      • Re: A Newby From Philly :) The Wicker Woman, Mon Mar 24 7:57pm
        Hi there Hannah, So glad you finally introduced yourself here! Hannah and I had a nice long talk on the phone a few months ago and I was so hoping she'd find us here and become a part of this... more
        • Newby from Philly Janet Noall, Tue Mar 25 9:10am
          Hannah, You are just plain AWESOME ! Jan N
      • Re: A Newby From Philly :) ABQLaurie, Mon Mar 24 12:52pm
        Welcome, Hannah! It's great to see another newbie in this seat weaving world, and you're sure to feel the camaraderie of the community very soon. Check out the Seat Weavers Guild, too. The annual... more
    • How I got started bworrad13, Fri Mar 21 10:53am
      Hello all! I'm Bruce Worrad in West Central New Hampshire. I'm 64 yrs old and have been doing seatwork since I was 25 years old. This is my first post, but have been following this forum since almost ... more
      • How I got Started Mary M Christenbury, Sat Mar 22 10:22am
        Hi Bruce, Please email me directly with your contact info. I may have some seat weaving work for you. Long story. Regards, Mary Christenbury Huntersville, NC Macama@bellsouth.net
      • How I got started Janet Noall, Sat Mar 22 9:15am
        Welcome, Bruce, So glad you finally joined the Forum ! It is so fun to hear everyone's story. I wish everyone would be more "vocal" . We need more input ! I get TIRED of seeing my name here !!! So,... more
    • How did you get started in Chair Caning Janet Noall, Sun Mar 9 1:14pm
      It was 1974, and my dad had just retired and was BORED ! He found a free class, that taught chair caning, and he said to my mom," I have to find some chairs that need caned ". She said " no you don't ... more
    • just fell into it johnk15, Sat Mar 8 9:38pm
      I attended a fund-raiser show for a local historical society and they had a man there demonstrating how to weave chairs. Looked interesting. I was working away from home, living in a hotel, in... more
    • How did I get started in chair caning? chrperson, Sat Mar 8 4:01pm
      I caned my first chair in 1974. A caned back to an upholstered chair, purchased by my father at a small shop in the furniture district in Chicago (where I lived at the time) because I had wanted to... more
    • How did you get started in the chair caning business Mary M Christenbury, Sat Mar 8 11:30am
      It was my sister-in-law's fault. She signed up for a class at John C. Campbell Folk School and invited me to go along with her. I'd been retired about two years and was in need of finding something... more
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