Now taking orders for Spring delivery of
Made in New Hampshire porch rockers!!
Made in New Hampshire porch rockers!!
Chair caning, a vintage utilitarian art
finding a come back here in New England.
Seeing porch rockers brings me right back to evenings at my Grandmother's NH farm and her large wrap-around porch with Porch Rockers from one end to the other.
Welcome to New England Porch Rockers
New England Porch Rockers is a custom, traditional porch rocker manufacturer. Although chair caning was what started it all, we now custom make porch rockers in sizes from children's to adults, with the addition of our extra large Papa Bear porch rocker.
We have been hand caning and seat weaving chair seats for many years. Chair caning is a slow process using thin long strand cane passed through holes drilled around the circumference of the chair seat. The finished seats are beautiful and will last many years with proper care. Although chair caning dates back to Egyptian times the material is still the same, long strand Rattan Palm. Chair cane is the outside skin of the Palm and is also used to wrap Rattan furniture. Chair caning can be done in a number of patterns but the one most commonly seen is the 7 step octagon. Other cane patterns are Star of David, Spiderweb and Snowflake. French chair caning is done by cutting the exact length of cane and pegging the cane into the holes, which do not go all the way through. Blind caning, or French chair caning is done on parts of the chair where there is no pressure as it is very delicate and would not stand up to any weight.
Chair seat weaving is done on porch rockers and on any chair seat that has 4 rails that shape the seat. Danish Cord, Shaker Tape, Flat reed weaving, binder cane and rush are all done on these rails. Danish cord is a bit different and includes the use of 90 degree nails. The finished seat has an underside that is woven as well, making for a very nice looking finished chair seat. Reed is porous and will accept paint or stain while the chair cane has a glossy surface and is not porous even though we use an oil stain to match chair seats to backs or chair seats to a set where only one or two seats had to be replaced. Seat weaving produces a more dense finished seat and is used on rocking chairs, ladder-back chairs or occasional chairs. Basically, any chair can have a woven seat as long as it has the 4 rails that shape the seat.
Wicker furniture is also something we do. As long as a piece of wicker furniture is structurally sound, bringing it back to life is an excellent choice. Wicker refers to furniture woven almost entirely of round, flat or half round reed or a combination. Repairing wicker furniture is much more cost effective than buying new and it preserves the wonderful wicker furniture of eras gone by when you were sitting on your Grandmother's large screened porch.
While we mainly cane and weave chair seats and repair wicker, we have yet to find (and believe me, we've looked) a chair seat that we were unable to repair or replace. It is just a matter of taking what's left of the old seat apart slowly and studying how the chair seat was constructed. Chair seats that have missing or broken dowels or parts can be repaired as well. We have a wealth of parts and work closely with our manufacturer who makes turnings and replicates pieces.
We are one of only a couple of chair caning shops in the Rochester, Dover, Portsmouth, NH areas and we pick up and deliver. We have customers from Rhode Island to Maine to New York State and Martha's Vineyard and can arrange pick up and delivery any where in New England.
We work from our in home studio in Rochester, NH by appointment only.
Our phone number is 603.393.6451