To ensure that our students only receive the very best teaching, we have a number of world-class visiting experts. These include:
Tom is responsible for the daily running of the school, overseeing the design of all course programmes to ensure every student has the opportunity to gain the skills necessary to succeed in furniture making and design. His lectures on the history of design from the Eighteenth century through to contemporary furniture form the foundations of the syllabus. Tom took over as School Principal in Autumn 2019 following on from his father and founder of the school, Anselm Fraser.
Intermediate Course Tutor
Alan has been part of the fabric of the school since he joined the team in 1985 as an apprentice at the age of 15. An accomplished teacher and demonstrator with years of experience backed by training at The Midland International School of Polishing, Alan specialises in finishing and polishing, and is well-recognised in this field. He heads up the Intermediate course, teaching an intensive one-month programme. He is on-hand to support graduates from the Professional course in the Myreside Studios incubation workshops.
Andrew is head of tech at the Chippendale School. He is a tutor on the Professional course specialising in Computer-Aided Design (CAD). Students looking to upscale their furniture making business will benefit from Andrew’s insight into CNC machining, 3D Printing and Fusion 360. Andrew is an extremely approachable tutor whose knowledge knows no bounds in both furniture making and CAD and manufacturing.
Anselm Fraser established The Chippendale International School of Furniture in 1985 and has trained more than 500 Professional course students over the past three decades, many of whom have gone on to run successful businesses around the world. He has also trained the several hundred short course students that have attended the school’s Introductory course over the years. Anselm spends most of his time restoring a listed building near the school that will become student accommodation.
Ben is one of the Professional course tutors, specialising in design and running his own successful bespoke furniture making company from Myreside Studios, where he also supports residing graduates. He offers a blend of traditional craft and modern making expertise to students. He has designed furniture for major blue-chip clients and private individuals and has even made custom furniture for the Scottish Parliament. He holds an Honours Degree and Postgraduate Diploma in Furniture Design from Edinburgh College of Art.
Clare is the school’s restoration specialist and is one of the longest-serving members of staff, having joined the team some 25 years ago as an apprentice. She has an SQA in Hand Crafted Furniture, Joints and Assembly Furniture, and combines her work as the restoration specialist with her role as Student Welfare Officer. She also manages the machine maintenance alongside Grant Anderson.
Matty is a tutor on the Professional course. He is in charge of delivering ‘The Chippendale School of Furniture Award’ as a Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) Assessor. Matty is an experienced furniture designer and maker who expertly guides students through the furniture making process.
Intermediate course tutor
Fiona works as a tutor on the intermediate course with Alan McGovern. She is a skilled woodturner and also shares the teaching of the Woodturning Weekends with Adam Stone, as well as teaching bowl turning on the introductory course. Fiona runs her own successful furniture business, Feemade from Myreside Studios. She is a keen motorcyclist and clay pigeon shot, and her recent claim to fame is beating The Chaser on the TV quiz show of that name.
Len is a Tutor on the Professional course, he is a highly skilled cabinet maker with an eye for detail. His style is a mixture between Scandinavian and Oriental. Originally from Holland, Len has lived in Scotland for many years and was awarded Student of the Year in 2021 having graduated from the Professional course. When he’s not in the workshop, you will probably find Len paragliding in the Scottish countryside.
Anna Patxot Bertran
Anna is the Digital Assistant on the Professional course, working closely with Andrew Cockerill helping students with their CAD training. She also works alongside Ben Dawson, guiding students through design development on their projects. Anna has a Degree in Engineering in Industrial Design from ELISAVA and she is always a good sounding board for students.
Owen maintains the workshops and school grounds. He is responsible for opening the school in the morning, keeping the supplies well stocked and manages the recycling. He’s keen on countryside pursuits, enjoys cycling and fronts a local rock band that frequently plays in the local area.
Adam is the school’s woodturning specialist. He was a tutor on the Professional course for two years before setting up his own woodworking business in Perthshire. He returns to teach woodturning across all formats of the school’s courses.
Isa is an expert in perspective drawing with watercolours, and specialises in the history of modern furniture. She comes to us from the Lycée des Métiers d’art Georges Guynemer near Montpellier in France. She teaches students how to realise their designs in perspective during the first half of Term One.
Isla Munro is an Edinburgh based designer and Product Design tutor at Edinburgh College of Art, delivering courses from the fundamentals of speculative design to professional practice. With over 16 years’ experience in the creative industries, Isla’s background is in Furniture and Product Design. Her freelance practice is based in Design and Communication, and Community Engagement.
Wood Carving Tutor
John is an experienced woodcarver and is passionate about communicating these age-old hand crafting skills. With over 30 years’ experience, he has mastered the craft as well as the ability to teach others his extensive knowledge.
Steam Bending Tutor
Michael Fortune has designed and made furniture by commission since 1975 for private residences all over North America. He has also worked extensively with the Canadian Embassy, designing and making stunning furniture for their embassies around the world. His work incorporates a variety of wood forming techniques. On the Professional course he teaches students the many ways in which wood can be bent to form flowing designs.
Richard is a member of the Society of Gilders and works as a gilding consultant and practitioner. He runs his own company, Watergild Studios, and is passionate about sharing his love for the craft.
Read More About Us
Our professional course, which equips students with all the skills and acumen to go on and run their own furniture making and design business, is a nine-month long course running from October to June each year.
Graduates from The Chippendale International School of Furniture receive a certification recognised worldwide and are equipped with all the skills required to run a successful woodworking business.
Find out what other graduates from the Chippendale International School of Furniture had to say about their experience of learning from the best and mastering their furniture making and design skills.
Each year we welcome furniture design students from across the world to learn the best of traditional and modern furniture making. Find out more about the courses we offer.
Get In Touch
If you are looking to embark on a career change or you have an interest in the art of woodworking and furniture design, get in touch and arrange in a visit.