Ribbon Rocking Chair
Furniture Award Winner 2006
Designer: Katie Walker
Maker: Katie Walker
Dimensions: 80cm x 85cm x 100cm
Wood Supplier: Sutton Timber
Main Wood Species: Rippled Ash, UK
This was a speculative project; to design a rocking chair from one continuous band of timber which was to form the main visual statement.
Inspiration for the chair’s form was found in a sculpture by Naum Gabo, a basket by the Japanese basket maker Shounsai Shono and an ongoing interest in the mathematical aspects of natural forms.
A light structure – visually and physically; each of the three component parts works together to create a ‘rigid’ structure. The laminated ash ‘ribbon’ is not independently rigid and neither the stainless rod framework nor the leather covered ply seating shell can withstand the required weight without either distorting or fracturing. By combining all three elements, forces can be shared and used to hold the timber band in shape.
The band is formed in 1.5mm Ash veneers, chosen specifically for their strength and appropriateness to the laminating process. Sutton Timber provided the rippled Ash surface veneers which add character – rippled Ash having a naturally beautiful grain. The Ash laminates are laid up on a mould constructed from a continuous steel band, an idea that came from using an old band-saw blade.
The Ribbon Rocking Chair has now been added to the Katie Walker Furniture range of batch produced pieces.