Posts Tagged ‘bentwood rocker’

Year of Big Orders

December 22, 2013

This year has been a year for bigger orders for us. After arriving home from our 3 month adventure at Celebration of Fine Art in April, we took off on an order for 12 Greek God chairs and 2 Shangrila II rockers. All were made from gorgeous black walnut. This order went to a beautiful new home in Midland TX. Here are some magazine quality photos the customer sent of all the chairs around their two tables and one of the rockers. We feel honored to have our chairs in this Texas sized home that is so lovingly decorated by its owners Matt and Kristina.

johnson chairs

This shot shows all 12 chairs around their two round tables. I love those gorgeous doors in the background.

johnson chair

This is a photo of a single Greek God chair out of walnut

johnson chair set

This photo looks like it came straight out of a magazine with a great shot of the entire room with the chairs in the background

johnson rocker

Here is one of the rockers downstairs. I love the rug underneath and the backdrop of the stairs.

solomon at johnson house

This is their great dane Solomon, looking so handsome with the chairs behind him. I just had to include this photo.

Our last big order of the year was a bedroom ensemble that went to Breckenridge CO. Breckenridge is our favorite CO town with all its quaintness and beauty. The ensemble consisted of a king size bed with night stands, two bent wood rockers with an end table, a low back chair and to be delivered in the spring is a custom desk. Everything was a combination of black walnut and tiger maple. It was such a striking combo and sure to be a stand out in this mountain home. Even though we had our challenges while working on this order, between getting sick and the very cold weather slowing us down, it went out the door last week and made it to CO in time for their Christmas family gathering. Here are some pictures that the designer, Cindy Gray of Interiors by Design in Breckenridge sent us.

bennett bed complete

This is the King Size bed out of black walnut with the tiger maple on the inset. The two nightstands are on either side of the bed out of the same wood.

bennett bed and nightstand

Here is a side shot

bennett rockers

The two bent wood rockers and the little end table sit facing the fireplace. Such a cozy setting.

bennett low back chair

This is where the desk will go with the low back chair.

bennett rocker and end table

Here is a nice shot of a rocker with the bed in the background

Now we can get down to getting ready to leave for three months in AZ to exhibit at Celebration of Fine Art. There is lots to do in such a short amount of time. But we’re looking forward to going, seeing old friends and customers and being in a warm climate. We’ll see how our two baby boys do out of their home setting. They should make lots of new two and four legged friends. The show starts on January 11th and goes till March 23rd. We plan to have many outstanding furniture and sculpture pieces at the show; along with creating many new sculpture pieces while we’re there. So if you can make it to the show, stop by and say hi and see what we have available. I will also be posting on our blog and facebook throughout the show, if you want to keep up on what we’re creating.

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Fall Happenings and the Bending Process of the Bentwood Rocker

November 16, 2013

It’s been a busy fall here for us here in the land of Shangrila. Our two new little boys, Apollo and Perseus (pictured below checking out the shop) are growing like weeds (up to about 80 & 90lbs at just over 5 months old). They are keeping us very busy and entertained. But we’ve also been busy with customer orders, making a delivery to Mystique Gallery in Scottsdale and now getting ready for another 10 week adventure in AZ at Celebration of Fine Art. We just finished up a desk chair for a NM customer and are underway on a large bedroom order going to a new home in Breckenridge CO.  This large order not only has a king size bed with night stands, but a desk and low back chair and two bent wood rockers. The bending involved in making one of these unique rockers is quite a task. In this blog I will show some of the steps in the creative process.

boys in shop

Apollo and Perseus at 4 months old, checking out the shop. They love to see what’s going on and pick up pieces of wood to chew on.

Shangraw_21079-ZAPP

Here is a completed Bent wood rocker made from Cherry and Ash

The first process is prepping for all the gluing of the legs. This process has to take place before it gets to cold. So we were in a crunch to get all the major gluing done before winter hits. Luckily our weather has been gorgeous and not to cold, which is unusual for this time of year. Scott also changed how the glue up goes on the legs, making each leg of the rocker, three separate glue ups. This may take more time, but makes it a little easier and a much stronger bend.

Once the three bends are complete, the arm gets glued up on a separate form that lies on the leg. Normally we use contrasting woods, to really show off the whole process.

The seat and headrest (normally the same wood as the arms) are glued up, carved and shaped and then the process of putting the rocker together and shaping it, takes place. Even though the bending process of this rocker is very time-consuming and hard, the unique design makes this rocker like no other out there. It’s not the typical classic look, but has a more modern design.

bennett runner strips

This is a set of 9ft long strips ready for the first glue up.

bennett 1st runner glueup

Laminated strips glued up on the form. A lot of clamps go into this glue up. It takes both of us almost hour to do the glue up.

bennett 1st runner

This is what the first glue up looks like when taken out of the form.

bennett 2nd runner glueup

Here is the second glue up. This glue up is a little shorter than the first, building up the middle section of the leg, to make it stronger.

bennett runner glueup closeup

Close up of the second glue up

rocker legs 2nd glueups

Now four rocker legs are glued up and ready for the 3rd and final glue up to beef up the curve area.

final glue up on rocker leg

This is the last of the glue ups on the legs. A small section of laminations is glued on to the curve to make it stronger.

rocker laminated back slat

While some of the legs are being glued up, the laminations for the backrest are cut. Here we have walnut with ash in the middle. The contrasting woods blend in with the rest of the rocker and the ash in the middle of each backrest make them even stronger. These will be flexible backrests, that will flex as you rock.

glue up of rocker spindles

Here is two backrests being glued up on the form. This form was especially made to fit the curve of the back.

cutting rocker leg

Here is Scott trimming up the sides of the rocker leg. It is quite a cut on the bandsaw.

runner sanded

This is what the rocker leg looks like with all the bends glued on and sanded flat. Now it’s ready to attach the arm.

arm form

This is the arm form clamped on to the runner. This form is specially made to get a nice comfortable sweep while rocking.

arm glued up

The arm is now glued on to one of the legs. It’s a tricky glue up due to the curve and takes about an hour from start to finish.

rocker arms

Here you can really see the contrast in the woods, with the walnut arms glued on for one rocker. Next the seat gets attached, then the headrest and back spindles. And finally all the sanding and finishing. Stay tuned for the next blog, showing the completed rockers made from walnut and ash, along with the other bedroom furniture.

Shangri-La Woodworks, Scott and Stephanie Shangraw, HC 61 Box 40

This was our first bent wood rocker made from walnut and mesquite.

Curly Maple Rocker

July 17, 2012

I promised that I’d post the professional photos of the Curly Maple with Ebony rocker and here they are. I normally go for the darker woods, but this is just gorgeous and one of our favorites. It just might be a keeper.

We just found out that we were accepted into the Celebration of Fine Art Scottsdale. This is the original 10 week show, being it’s 23rd year, that takes place Jan-March each year. This show is very hard to get into, so we feel very privileged to be a part of the Celebration family. We will miss some of our new friends that will be at the other show, but we can visit them when we all have time over the 10 week period. We are looking forward to the show and are already making plans for some spectacular pieces. We will also be having a gallery showing at Mystique Gallery in downtown Scottsdale while we are there and this should be very exciting.

Currently we are gearing up for two upcoming shows in Park City UT and Loveland CO. Scott leaves in two weeks and we’ve been busy creating new sculptures. While he is gone, I will post some of these pieces on the blog for all to see.

This photo shows how pretty the grain is.

Here you can see the contrast between the black of the Ebony and the light of the Maple.

We also had the Bentwood rocker that was made from Cherry and Ash photographed. This picture is much better than ours and really shows off this rocker.

Wood Shop News Article

January 6, 2012

Our Wood Shop News Article finally came out and it turned out great. Jennifer Hicks did a fantastic job.  We expected to get a few woodworkers emailing us, but we’ve also had some potential customers contact us as well. So some real good leads have come from this article. This magazine is geered to all woodworkers, but mainly emphasizes on large cabinet shops. So getting Jennifer to come to our rural home and interview us was quite a surprise. We feel honored to be in this magazine amongst all those power house wood shops.

We also had some photos in Wood Worker West Magazine, for the Mesa Museum Contemporary Crafts Exhibit that we were invited to. This was a surprise to see our two pieces that will be on display at the Museum January 27 through March 18. Right now we are geering up for our departure to the AZ Fine Art Show, that takes place January 19 through April 1. We have been busy working on many new carved sculpture pieces and a rocker. We will have some outstanding and unique pieces there and can’t wait for the customer reactions to our work.