Nice Video of Klint’s Safari Chair

If you’d like a close look at some of the details of Kaare Klint’s Safari Chair, check out this video (OK, it’s a commercial) from Carl Hansen & Søn on the piece.

You get to see the elegant cigar-shape stretchers and how the slightly tapered tenons flow into the overall shape. Plus a bunch of nice close-ups of the way the leather is attached to the wood.

I’ve seen a lot of new Roorkee/Safari chairs on the market lately, some of them with design details I rejected. On my first Roorkees I used a vegetable-tanned leather that I left natural. Heck, I even sent photos of it to Popular Woodworking to use in the article published three years ago on building them. I quickly changed my mind on the leather color, thinking it to “fleshy” – almost a “Silence of the Roorkees” look.


But several design houses are now triumphing that look – natural leather with dark wood.

I’m still not a fan.

If you want to build one of these chairs, complete plans are in “Campaign Furniture,” now in its second printing.

— Christopher Schwarz

About Lost Art Press

Publisher of woodworking books and videos specializing in hand tool techniques.
This entry was posted in Campaign Furniture. Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to Nice Video of Klint’s Safari Chair

  1. Brian Clites says:

    I’ve gotta say, both looks have their aesthetic value. There’s something pretty cool about the juxtaposition of a classic design with modern pallettes. Given your love for all things black milk paint, I’m surprised you didn’t experiment with a white, brown, or even red leather on a black frame. I want to try this design with white oak, and ebonize with tea/vinegar. [EDIT: OOPS! – I somehow missed fig. 7.32 the first two times through campaign furniture. That black leather/ebonoized mahogany/white strapping is awesome! i.e. you already did try this!]

    I know you stuck to classic materials, but I also think that uber-durable bison would bring some great texture to the piece (an alternative for which I wouldn’t try any crazy color schemes). I hope you take these ideas as compliments — your Rorkee design (CF pp 154 – 189) is as boldly timeless as it gets. I can’t wait to build a few for my shop.

  2. Looks nice…but I would like to see it pass the Chris Christie test before investing all the time to build one.

  3. raney says:

    Per the video – the chair ‘oozes masculine warmth’.

    Not sure for whom that’s a selling point, but it certainly isn’t me.

    charred wood roorkhee. You know you want to. So I don’t have to.

  4. calebjamesplanemaker says:

    Nice video. I like the ash and grey canvas.

    I think those tapers are more like six degrees. (poke) ;P 🙂

  5. When I figure out how to sell 4 of these babies a week at $1,000 each, I’ll have a new job.

    Carl Hansen & So. sell for $1,125 in Chapel Hill…

    The Schwarz Roorkhee is more masculine, and the leather has a pleasing creak when you sit in them.

  6. quiinc says:

    Chris, I don’t think there’s any comparison. Your design is so much cleaner. In addition to the link to your book, tell people about the a href=> video . I found the video invaluable when I built a couple of the chairs. I plan on building more. And why don’t people talk about how incredibly comfortable these chairs are when discussing them?

  7. ehisey says:

    This is on my list of builds from your book “Campaign Furniture”. IT was a great read, and timely find as I was looking to try building campaign style furniture. Only thing your really don’t cover is the typical finishes. Also any plans on a book on from Lost Art Press on quality finishes? They still mystify me.

    • Considering the time period, most pieces likely were finished with shellac.

      I don’t write much about finishing, though I am quite passionate about it. It’s impossible to do much more than parrot the work of Bob Flexner. Start with his book “Finishing 101.” If you need more, get “Understanding Wood Finishing, Revised Edition.”

      Don Williams is working on a book on historical finishing practices that promises to be excellent. But it won’t be out for a couple years at least.

Comments are closed.