Ladderback Chairs

with Peter Follansbee

Registration in this course has been temporarily suspended while we wait for health and safety conditions to look favorable. Thanks for your patience!

August 10th - 15th, 2020


Wildlands Trust Community Barn

675 Long Pond Road

Plymouth, MA

A six-day course

Learn to make this iconic post-and-rung chair over the course of a week in a small-group setting. 


Every step of the process will be tackled hands-on—splitting the stock and riving with the froe; shaping parts with drawknife and spokeshave; laying out and cutting joinery; boring mortises with a brace and bit.


The strength of these timeless chairs springs from mortise and tenon joinery interlocking a combination of wet and dry components. Kiln-dried rungs fit tightly into mortises in the posts, which still contain some moisture. The joint both shrinks and swells together, never to come undone. Peter will cover these critical dynamics in detail.  


Peter has made these chairs from green wood since 1978, learning the craft from John (Jennie) Alexander and Drew Langsner.


Registrants will receive a list of some basic required tools, as well as a few optional ones that may turn up handy. CRAFT will provide other specialized tools for students’ use. Prior to the class, we'll discuss seating options, as time may allow students to weave a Shaker tape seat on the final class session. 

Registration is $2050, and includes:

  • Six days hands-on guidance in small-class setting 

  • All materials

  • Delicious lunches every day

  • Weeklong housing in a pond-frontage cottage, an easy stroll from the workshop. Private bedrooms, full kitchen, hilltop deck, excelsior sunset views. (Partner interested in joining you as a summer cottage plus-one? Possible! Just follow up with email after registering.)


Featuring steam-bent rear posts and two bent slats,

this chair is both attractive and comfortable.