Schedule July 29-31, 2022
Register at The McKinney Center
Meet and greet and registration!
Music On the Square
& Ice Cream
Town of Jonesborough has scheduled a bluegrass band, Gary Brewer and the Kentucky Ramblers. This group’s last album was #1 on the bluegrass billboard for a while in 2021
Meet our Host!
Rebecca Holland Brown:
Mexican Chair Weave
Weaving these chairs that are usually a tourist souvenier is a favorite of Rebecca's! Learn why they are similar to some macrame styles (which is enjoying a comeback!)
Restoring chairs; how to make repairs, coloring and/or finishing the weave and suggested materials for use
Curtis is an internationally recognized local Windsor chairmaker. He will be talking about his involvement in making chairs out of native materials through the Green Wood Project in Latin America
Sue became immersed in Virtual Teaching due to the pandemic. She will discuss the platforms and tools she uses and how she organizes an online class. She has taught over 200 new weavers virtually.
Rush Questions? Dave will explain some of the nuances of rush including wrapped corners, deep seats and most important
...tension and form! Bring your questions with you.
Snowshoe Weave with flat-braided cord. Learn how to do this challenging weave using flat cord braided at Silver River!
All Day display
Meet Walter and learn more about his chairs and new book!
All Day display
Decorative Danish Cord
All Day display
Cathryn Peters Video
Natural Rush weaving
Vote in new members, learn about the Guild
Tips and Tricks
Bring your favorite ideas to save time, different tools, anything about seatweaving or the business of it!
Jonesborough Visitor Center Museum
Each hour will feature a different subject. You will be able to visit them all in the main room. We will be doing virtual portions of the day, but the entire Gathering will not be live virtually. Recordings will be made to be accessible on the website for members who choose not to travel.
Douglas W. Lowman
Currently an artist working in seat weaving using cane, rush and flat reed as well as stain glass and textile weaving, Doug Lowman started his academic and employment life in considerably different venues. For more than 50 years he has been involved in the structural characterization of small molecules and industrially interesting polymers using high-resolution solution-state and solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy techniques. Doug worked for Eastman Kodak Company initially, then Eastman Chemical Company, both in Kingsport, TN, for 30 years in production and the research laboratories as an NMR spectroscopist from 1979 to 2009. Since retirement from Eastman in 2009, he has been a Research Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery at Quillen College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University (ETSU), Johnson City, TN, focusing on structural analysis of fungal cell wall carbohydrates, like mannans and glucans.
Prior to coming to Eastman, Doug received his BS degree from Wofford College, Spartanburg, SC, in 1970, his MS degree from the University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, in 1972, and his PhD from Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, in 1977 followed by a post-doctoral position at the University of Georgia, Athens, GA. All four positions and degrees were in chemistry. In 2004, he co-founded AppRidge International, LLC, to provide technical out-sourced support to industry leaders for chemical analyses. Doug used his technical talents to propose a winning solution to an Innocentive Challenge on new approaches for cardiac transseptal puncture in 2010. He has served as a peer reviewer for several technical journals as well as a peer review panelist for a DOE-sponsored technology program hosted through the Institute for Regulatory Science, Columbia, MD. In addition, Doug has organized or co-organized several symposia for the American Chemical Society and the Pittsburg Conference on Analytical Chemistry. He is the author or co-author of over 50 peer-reviewed publications and over 40 technical presentations.
As a caner, Doug has exhibited chairs and demonstrated chair caning in several venues in North Carolina, Ohio, Arkansas and Tennessee. In North Carolina, he exhibited and demonstrated at the Southern Animal Fiber Fair (SAFF) and Blue Ridge Fiber Festival. In Tennessee, Doug has participated in the National Carousel Fine Craft Show, Sycamore Shoals Fiber Fair, Fine Art in the Park Show, Tennessee Craft Northeast Chapter Fine Craft Show, Tennessee Craft Week Tennessee Visitor’s Center exhibition, ArtCurious Holiday Craft Fair, Exchange Place Spring Garden and Fall Festival Fairs, Summer Craft 2017, Handmade Here Tennessee Craft Exhibit, Overmountain Weavers Guild Fiber Exhibition, and Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts Virtual Exhibition. He also demonstrated and exhibited in Ohio and Arkansas at the SeatWeavers’ Guild Chair Caning Roadshows and their Annual Gathering Chair Exhibitions. Rewards for his efforts include Best of Show at the Summer Craft 2017 Exhibit and an Honorable Mention in 2018 at the Handmade Here Tennessee Craft Exhibit, both at the Reece Museum, ETSU, for a walnut Victorian rocker with the seat and back both caned in the single daisy chain pattern. Doug has taught chair caning since 2015 at the Exchange Place and Jonesborough Senior Center. He is a member of The SeatWeavers’ Guild, Inc, Tennessee Craft-Northeast Chapter, Overmountain Weaver’s Guild, Holston Valley Woodworking Club and Tri-Cities Wood Turners.
Rebecca Holland Brown
Rebecca Brown is married with three adult sons and is a 30-year veteran, high school math teacher in Panama City, Florida who has enjoyed weaving baskets for 27 years and wove her first chair seat about 16 years ago. In 2008, she started weaving for a local furniture refinisher and has done many seats since then. She also weaves for word-of-mouth customers and friends. Her furthest customers have been from New Orleans and Atlanta, and further south in Florida. Her seat weaving skills include splint, rush (PTNR and fibre, though not fond of PTNR), binder cane, hand cane, loom cane, a little Danish cord, and little wicker. One of her favorite weaves in the Mexican weave of which she has done several. She figured out the weave by deconstructing the first one and taking lots and lots of pictures. A little knowledge of macramé knots was helpful in learning this weave. Rebecca joined the Seat Weavers’ Guild in 2019 and got to enjoy her first Gathering in Michigan that summer. She is thankful for all of the seat weavers who have helped hone her skills over the years
“I grew up alongside the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland, about 1 hour south of Annapolis. Antiques, mid-Atlantic primitives, blue crabs and rednecks were all around me. I had a “Depression era Dad” with a basement full of tools and who would always be fixing something around the house. There were craft and how-to books to read in all the bookcases. We had an old fishing boat where I would spend hours practicing knot tying or better described as knot untying? I guess these experiences just stay with a kid so inclined.
Moving off to engineering school in Rhode Island in the late 70s and recently married, my wife and I would be regulars at all the flea markets. We scored quite a few finds on the Sunday sales in Charleston, RI and at the big one in Brimfield MA. Many an old chair for a few dollars came into our possession and from there I actively started making, fixing, refinishing and seat weaving.
I pretty much considered myself just a well-practiced hobbyist for most of my lifetime. Many years ago my wife and one son made the move west to be closer to my wife’s family of Irish immigrants including 5 girls and no boys! My wife’s Dad never had a chance running the old farm.
We are Pacific Northwest residents for near 27 years now. While it’s green, wet and wild…. seat weavers do not exist. I never saw another caner at a Farmers market, craft fair or anywhere else for my first 20 + years. Strange.
I continued to cane and refinish the occasional piece and would dream of doing this work full-time. The recession of 2008 came along to give me a giant push. At the time, I was self-employed designing and building custom industrial food processing machinery. That industry dried up and I had to reinvent myself in my mid-50s. Oh great.
At the time, we were renovating an 1889 Victorian house along the Oregon coast. I folded up the engineering business, sold our house in Portland, and moved to Astoria, Oregon with no job, no prospects and no plan. In a fit of foolishness, I rented a 300 sq ft shop along the Columbia River. Up went the window sign freshly printed off on my inkjet printer, “North Coast FIX”, and a list of skills… Seat Weaving, Furniture Repairs and Cane Expert. What could possibly go wrong?
Almost immediately, in comes the first of many, many customers. A nice woman of near 80 and the retired local kindergarten teacher of 40 years and a promise to bring back a cane project. Oh sure! 15 minutes later I see her dragging a Lincoln Rocker behind her and toward my direction. It belonged to her parents who had moved to Oregon from Michigan. A few chair repairs and other inquiries followed that day. The very next day, there waiting for me was a customer with a Victorian parlour chair. And so it went, project after project, day after day. After a week, there was a month of work. After a month, there was a 6 month backlog. I have never ever caught up. Mommas don’t let your children grow up to be… seat weavers!
Careful what you wish for. I now work full-time 6-1/2 days per week. North Coast FIX is a full service restoration workshop. Customers contact me from all over the west. Austin, Denver, Missoula, San Francisco, Portland and Seattle. We specialize in heirloom residential projects and commercial as well; historic church pews, library furniture and doors. In addition to seat weaving, we offer upholstery and most all wood and metal restoration skills required. Restoring vintage lighting is a big thing with us as well.
If you ever do find yourself out west on the very, very edge of the left coast… give us a visit. Inside a busy workshop, you’ll find a Grumpy Old Man surrounded by too many projects and too little time.”
Jay Rosen Owner / North Coast FIX (Astoria, Oregon), Restoration Experts , “Old School Craftsmanship”
In 1983, I was fortunate to meet Windsor chairmaker Dave Sawyer. Dave is well-known for sharing his knowledge of chair making and because of his generosity, I was able to start making chairs full-time in 1984. A year later, my wife Marilyn, our two daughters and I moved to Jonesborough TN.
I am co-founder of GreenWood, a sustainable forestry project in Latin America and co-founder of Jonesborough Locally Grown, a local food initiative that includes the Jonesborough Farmers Market, a yearly farm to table dinner and Boone Street Market . My main avocation is gardening but a lot of my spare time is spent enjoying family, friends and my town.
I make Windsor Chairs in much the same way they were made 200 years ago. My small, one-man shop is located in Tennessee, in the heart of Jonesborough’s Historic District. I have published numerous articles on chairmaking and have taught in craft schools both here and abroad. My chairs are in the permanent collection of the Tennessee State Museum, the Southern Highlands Craft Guild, the Tennessee State Governor’s Mansion and Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson.
Sue Muldoon divides her time between 3-dimensional and 2-dimensional work. She bounces back and forth between photography, web design and graphic design to seatweaving (chair caning, wicker repair, rush, splint, etc.) and basket weaving.
Basketry started as an add-on to seat weaving because there was material begging to be used in more than one format.
Sue’s career has always been creative, from wallpaper hanging and interior painting to a lengthy career in the floral industry as designer and merchandiser. Wood carving, furniture refinishing and upcycling furniture in novel ways using unique materials like leather belts, ties and alpaca wool set her apart from traditional seatweaving methods.
Color is rampant and unapologetic.
Where some might see a chair, Sue sees a statement. She spends the majority of her time now repairing seats (an unabashed “chairnerd” and webmaster of The SeatWeavers Guild, Inc) but enjoys branching out into basketry.
She considers her seatweaving work to be part functional and part emotional. Along with repairing chairs, she repairs the memories that are attached to seats that are in demise and disrepair. The joy on a client’s face when they see family history brought back to functionality is inspiring.
Her photography and design work enable her to get the word out about what she does, and her skills in social media are in demand from farmers markets, growers, artists and authors.
Creating special baskets for her most rapt audience, her 9 month old, 5 and 10-year-old grandsons, keeps Sue busy and inspires her to teach them to appreciate nature, natural materials and art.
A frequent instructor at various sheep, wool and fiber festivals, furniture schools art retreats and farmers markets, she enjoys sharing seatweaving and basketmaking to new crafters and artisans. Virtual teaching has become part of her skills out of neccessity and adventure.
I grew up near Chattanooga, TN, nailing boards together from an early age in my grandfather's woodshop. An ample supply of Legos kept me curious about how the universe was assembled. The love of patterns and design led to a Mechanical Engineering degree in 2002. In 2004, I turned back to woodworking. My brother and I started a two-man "habitat enhancement" business engaged in home repairs and landscaping. A few years later, a move to Folly Beach, SC found me repairing boat docks and ultimately brought me in contact with Brandy Clements, fresh from Chair Caning Boot-camp with her Aunt Linda. 15 years later, I find seat weaving, coupled with running the business, continues to bring together a life-long love of learning, working with my hands, problem solving, process refinement and a demented pattern fetish. The little time I have away from weaving chairs and crunching numbers is spent surrounded by books, stringed instruments and puppets...all to be included in a future adventure, yet to be determined…
Brandy from Silver River Center for Chair Caning has spent years researching and traveling to satisfy her chair nerd thirst for knowledge. A fourth generation weaver, Brandy considers herself an ambassador of the craft, and as such, she has accumulated an astonishing amount of historical information that will wow any seat weaver, furniture maker, or history buff.
All day displays in the main room:
Artsy Danish Cord
I was inspired by a photo I saw and wanted to give a replica Danish rocker an artsy, colorful makeover.
The frame will be stripped and stained dark. I am planning that the weave will be a combination of looped warps and wefts in a twill pattern to create texture using two colors on the warps to create more visual interest. Warps will be dyed hemp cord and wefts will be Danish Cord. But until I start, I am don’t really know what the end result will be!! That’s the artist experiment versus the goal of authentic restoration.
Diagrams of how to weave double and triple looped warps will be on available.
Competed back will be on display and seat will be ongoing until complete, then the chair will remain as an art display.
I graduated from VCU with a degree in Communication Arts and Design. My major was in graphic design and photography but I always enjoyed working with hands on arts and crafts. I am mostly self taught and have been in business for five years. I have restored a variety of chairs requiring different materials and techniques with my focus being authentic restoration. I have seen some recent work that inspired an artistic view of an inexpensive replica Danish rocker.
I grew up in southeastern Michigan, graduated from high school, and received degrees in physics and geology/geophysics. I joined Gulf Oil in 1972 and worked in geophysics research, development, and technology support for Gulf, Sohio/BP; then I started Reservoir Imaging, Inc.
Ellen and I married in 1977. We lived in Texas and Pennsylvania. In 1997, Ellen didn’t want to live in Houston anymore, and when she found a clinical dietitian position in Kingsport, Tennessee, we moved in 1998. I decided to become a chairmaker and set up a small shop. In July 1998, I did my first national show at the Handweavers Guild of America Convergence in Atlanta, Georgia.
For nearly twenty years, woodworking was a hobby. While working to make a comfortable footstool, we took a vacation to the Southern Appalachians, where I saw Shaker and rush-woven chairs and benches. Returning to Houston, I began teaching myself how to weave curved seat surfaces. Ellen was a weaver and taught me various weaving patterns and provided help with color blending.
Since 1998 I have been making benches, stools, and chairs full time. Starting with simple benches custom fitted to the weaver at their loom, things evolved into barstools, spinner’s chairs, dining chairs, and so on. Once I felt I was a chairmaker, I made a rocking chair. All in all, twenty or so design variations have been developed.
I have taken the advice of a professional woodworker: “As you get older, make lighter things.” Since 2017 I have trimmed offerings to more fiber arts benches, stools, and chairs.
One lesson learned early in the O&G years: “Retirement can be a bad thing . . . I witnessed too many retiring to nothing but travel, golf, fishing . . . and dying in three to five years. I removed the retirement concept from my attitude. I changed careers.
Have you always wanted to gather your own cattails and do some rush seat weaving with them but not known how to do it? Weaving with cattails or bulrushes is one of the oldest recorded forms of chair seat weaving and Cathryn will be showing us, in a pre-recorded video, how to weave the hand-twisted rush pattern on a Hitchcock chair frame using cattail leaves she gathered and processed herself. Cathryn will be available live for a Q & A session afterward.
Cathryn Peters—Seatweaver Bio
Cathryn Peters is a professional seat weaver, wicker restoration specialist, speaker, instructor, blogger, and master craftsman with over 45+ years hands-on weaving experience. She has a special passion for passing on her skills to others so the craft of chair seat weaving does not become a truly “lost art.”
With that mission in mind, in 1999 Cathryn set up her comprehensive, one-stop resource and information website, WickerWoman.com to help seat weavers, wicker fixers, and DIY creatives fine-tune their skills or learn new ones. She shares biz tips, education, strategies, and encouragement!
For 30+ years Peters has traveled across the country teaching chair caning, other seat weaving techniques, wicker repair and her antler basketry through woodworking schools, folk schools, basket guild workshops, conventions, and community education programs.
Cathryn is a founding member of the first and only North American chair caning guild, called The SeatWeavers’ Guild, Inc.® (TSWG) and served two terms as the first President from 2007-2011, as webmaster/developer for nine years, later as Vice President, and is currently a board member-at-large.
In late 2019 after the sale of her 120-acre homestead in northern Minnesota, where she lived with her husband for 20 years, Cathryn moved in with her daughter and family in Hudson, Wisconsin. She has a little Artist’s Wicker Weaving Studio just steps from the main house, where she feels most content and satisfied.
SCHEDULE At-A -Glance
1 pm -7 pm Registration
7 PM Music on the Square
9:30 AM Introduction Doug Lowman
10:00 AM Rebecca Holland Brown: Mexican Chair Weave
11:00 AM Jay Rosen: Restoring Chairs
12-1:00 PM Lunch
1:00 Pm Curtis Buchanan, Chairmaker
2:00 PM Sue Muldoon: Virtual Teaching
3:00 PM Dave Klingler: Rush
4:00 PM Brandy Clements: Snowshoe Weave Flat Cord
Walter Turpening: Book and Book signing
JC Caning: Artistic Danish Cord
Cathryn Peters: Cattail Video
6:00 PM Dinner
10:00 AM Business Meeting
11:00 AM Tips and Tricks
1 – 4 PM: SeatWeaving Roadshow