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Chippendale Furniture School team inspired by restoring a Swiss chalet

A blog by Ali Easton (of Organic Geometry) and Anselm Fraser (Principal of the International Chippendale School of Furniture) about their working holiday restoring a Swiss chalet.

“Don’t get me wrong, I love my workshop in the Chippendale Incubation Centre. Looking south, I can raise my eyes from my vice and see the quiet woods and tended fields of East Lothian climb towards the Lammermuir hills that roll over the horizon. I’m a lucky man. But I was given an offer that would take me away from that and jumped at the chance.

Choosing your tree to make flawless furniture

The Chippendale International School of Furniture, half an hour from Edinburgh, is situated in rolling East Lothian countryside close to fantastic mature forests of oak, elm, lime, ash, chestnut, sycamore and beech trees; an environment with all the raw materials needed to make flawless furniture.

“We teach students on our nine month course to plant a tree, choose a tree, fell it and plank it,” says Anselm Fraser, Chippendale Furniture School Principal.
“There is much more to selecting a good tree for furniture making than you might think. You need to understand the effects of shrinkage, defects in the wood and warp.”

Getting stuck in as a Chippendale Furniture School student

A blog by Rupert Phelps, a former telecoms consultant

This is my blog about the 15 weeks that I have been at the Chippendale International School of Furniture.

I was a Senior Technical Telecoms Consultant working for a rather large blue chip organisation in the town of Staines in south-east England; back in May 2010 I decided to pack in my exceedingly dull, sedentary, paid, existence in leafy Middlesex suburbia for a new more physical, creative, self-motivated, countryside lifestyle. Most of my friends thought I might have been going through a midlife crisis; they might have been right, but it was a proactive midlife crisis at that!

The ultimate goal is to become a self-employed furniture maker and designer. With little or no woodworking skills, the quest was set.

A Strathclyde police officer’s first impressions as a Chippendale Furniture student

A blog by Sean McManus, furniture design student

Rapidly approaching the mid point of my course at the Chippendale School of Furniture I find myself reflecting on what has gone and, with some trepidation, to what has yet to come. To use the old cliché, it does seem like only yesterday I visited the school for the first time and was taken aback by the results achieved by the previous year’s students. Their furniture designs were on display for all to see in the great hall, open to criticism from anyone with an opinion, and the acid test awaits… ‘will it sell!’

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