The Sitting Room
There’s a tiny sitting room at Interweave—a closet, really—that I like to sit in sometimes when I need to think. Its primary purpose is to serve as a pumping room for new moms. There’s a little fridge, but you’re as likely to find some beers as some breast milk in there. What draws me, though, is the chair.
This is a chair with serious provenance. Back in 1979, when we were scrambling to put together the very first issue of Handwoven, I happened to be driving through the tiny town of Milliken about fifteen miles away from the office. I liked to drive through Milliken for the simple delight of the street names: Ethel, Beulah, Cora, Harriet and so on. On this particular occasion, though, something else caught my eye: an old abandoned chair sitting by a ditch.
I drove by, turned around, and drove back. Bought the chair from the property owner for $25. Refinished the frame—it was a wreck. Then Sharon Alderman wove upholstery fabric for it. Her choice was a crisp, simple log cabin weave using Oregon Worsted (remember that great yarn?). The angularity of the log cabin contrasted nicely with the curviness of the chair frame and its fancy medallion.
That chair was a featured project in Handwoven, then it sat in the front office when Interweave lived in an old Victorian house, then it rested in the Pourrey Cross textile library when we were in an old bank building. It has been sat upon for decades by throngs, and the fabric is in perfect shape. That’s what handwoven worsted wool upholstery will do for you. It’s a great chair. Come by and sit in it sometime.