A Blessed Pentecost to You! St. Paul Lutheran Church in Haskins, Ohio, near Bowling Green, is where I serve as a full-time parish pastor. This website is about the fun I get working on Windsor chairs in my spare time. I hope you'll check it out.
St. Paul Lutheran Church in Haskins
Rev. Jim Paulson was recently photographed by the Toledo Blade at the Fort Meigs 200th Anniversary of the First Seige 1813-2013.
Hi. I'm Rev. Jim Paulson and I make Handmade Windsor Chairs for my family and upon request. I've been a passionate woodcarver for over 27 years and I've been a serious furniture maker for most of my life. I also enjoy reading about history, especially about the period of the American Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. Occasionally, I'll volunteer as a re-enactor in period clothes so I can demonstrate turning a Windsor chair leg on my foot powered lathe or to visit an elementary school to get kids interested in woodworking.
As an ordained Lutheran pastor I often reflect on how the Almighty inspired our ancestors to design and build beautiful Windsor chairs and how blessed we are now as chair makers to offer diligent reproductions of those chairs. This updated website provides a portfolio of my work as a Windsor Chairmaker and gives examples of other furniture and carvings I've done over the years.
Nevertheless, my hope is that you might love to own one of these chairs as much as I do making them.
Photo by Barb Paulson
What's Special About a Handmade Chair?
What makes the type of chair I make distinctive is that it is a detailed 18th Century reproduction of a Windsor chair made in the tradition of shaping wood with hand tools. For legs, bows, arms, and spindles, I start the wood crafting process using wood that I hand split from logs. After I have used wedges and a froe to split the wood, I use a hatchet to shape the split pieces into a turning blanks for the lathe. In contrast to large furniture factory operations, I don't resort to using lathe duplicators to crank out identical chair parts with great efficiency. Instead, I make each chair leg one at a time on the lathe and I delight that they are slightly different. It was the same way for 18th century chair makers who made the original Windsor chairs in small shops. For an example, when I make a Sack Back Windsor chair I turn thirteen parts on the lathe (4 legs, 3 stretchers, 2 posts, and 4 short spindles) and that doesn't include the seven handcrafted tapered spindles that make up the back of the chair.
When a friend spends time marveling at the evidence of tool marks on a chair seat I've made, I know that it was because I followed the time honored tradition of building an authentic Windsor chair. Since I build each chair at the workbench, these are bench made Windsor chairs not mass produced ones.
As a chair maker I am quite particular about the woods I use to make furniture. I use several species of wood that are native to America. I also prefer to use thick pine boards for the seats and various straight grained hardwoods for the other chair parts. I make each chair right here in our small shop.
I care about preserving the environment for future generations and we cherish the gift of making hand crafted furniture from solid wood. Also, I'm careful in our selection and use of furniture finishes. It is our practice to utilize environmentally friendly products, whenever practicable.
For a small shop, this is a big deal for me to make beautiful milk painted Windsor chairs one at a time. If you like antiques and the craftsmanship evident in a chair made in the 1700's, you'll like what I offer.
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