Alison Wilson started her career in architecture then became a construction consultant. She has designed her own house in Dunlop in Ayrshire.
Ali was going to commission a dining room table when she bumped into Alasdair Easton, a Chippendale School graduate who now runs Organic Geometry from the largest Chippendale Incubation workshop. Alison was very interested to hear that Ali (as he’s confusingly also known!) had learnt his professional woodworking skills at the Chippendale School of Furniture.
This blog is written by Ewan Ogilvie, a recent graduate from the Chippendale International School of Furniture. I was delighted to receive an invitation from the school principal, Anselm Fraser, to join a small party heading out to Switzerland to help restore an abandoned log chalet. On arrival at 1100m… read more >>
We were delighted that our visitors from the U3A (University of the Third Age) went ahead with their visit to the Chippendale School of Furniture last Saturday despite the Arctic conditions. U3A are self-help, self-managed lifelong learning co-operatives for older people, providing opportunities for members to share learning experiences in… read more >>
A blog on progress since graduating by Sandy Boyd, winner of the Design Award on the 2011 -12 professional cabinet making course at the Chippendale International School of Furniture.
“Just buy the place – you really can’t lose at that price”. That was Anselm’s advice to me when, during my second term at Chippendale, I tentatively showed him property particulars relating to a disused fish processing plant on the pier at Gairloch, Wester Ross, where I already had a house that I intended moving to after the cabinet making course.
At 414 sq meters it is an intimidating size and I would not have considered buying such a place had it not been available for a song, due to a liquidation sale. It also has the all important 3 phase power supply. Bankers had being trying to recoup their losses on it for 6 years. In the end, with advice similar to Anselm’s from a surveyor friend and the local council’s business start up advisor, they got 10% me and my lawyer had another 2% on top of that; the total would not buy you a new mid range car these days.
An interview with leading furniture historian David Jones of St Andrews University, who has been delivering keynote lectures on the Life and Times of Thomas Chippendale at the Chippendale International School of Furniture for more than 12 years.
“Students at the Chippendale International School of Furniture learn about different furniture making styles, and how to take the best ideas from the past and adapt them to modern needs. Diversity and practicality are key features of the furniture design course,” says David Jones.
With a focus on Thomas Chippendale, David Jones’ furniture history talks also include a lecture on modern furniture from the 1950’s up to the present day. This takes in ‘experimental modernism’ in Italy (Fornasetti), American furniture makers (Charles and Ray Eames) and concludes with leading contemporary furniture designers like Angus Ross, based in Aberfeldy in Scotland.
Former Chippendale School of Furniture student Matthew Meyerhoff and father Doug, Graham Davies (the school’s senior tutor), and Anselm Fraser spent two weeks during the summer in the Swiss Alps renovating a derelict, 250 year old, pine chalet. The experience proved what the Swiss can do with ‘nothing but pine’ available as a building material.
A blog by Chippendale graduate and former teacher, Liz Jackson, on the joys of learning by doing (experiential learning) and from your colleagues (collaborative learning). Liz now has her own furniture making business within the Chippendale Incubator workshops.
Having recently graduated from the 2011-12 Chippendale course, I have spent some time reflecting on what made it such an enjoyable and effective learning experience.
As with most things in life, it comes down to the people involved and how we all worked together. Which in turn is a result of the student recruitment process and the learning approaches within the course itself.
Thanks are due to Colin Donald who published this article in the Sunday Herald business section in May 2012. Credits are also owed to Steve Cox who took these photos.
Skilled traditional artisans in Britain should reject “luddite” attitudes in order to bring manufacturing back from China, the head of the Chippendale International School of Furniture has said.Anselm Fraser, who runs his own cabinet-making business alongside the Chippendale School’s teaching facilities in a farmstead in East Lothian, said that the school was now offering its 20-strong annual student intake instruction in computer numerically controlled (CNC) machinery, previously shunned by British furniture-making purists adhering to the country’s venerable handmade traditions.
UK service men and women from the Army, Navy and RAF may now qualify for a grant of £1,000 to £2,000 towards their Chippendale International School of Furniture fees, because the Furniture School is now an Approved Learning Provider under the MOD’s Enhanced Learning Credit (ELC) Scheme.
“I’m looking forward to inviting more retired or redundant members of the Armed Forces onto our 9 month furniture making course,” says Anselm Fraser, the Furniture School Principal.
Chippendale School of Furniture’s Anselm Fraser fuses big sky thinking with commercial savvy
Main part of a feature published in Good Woodworking in Growth Rings in October 2011. Reproduced with thanks. Words: Darren Loucaides. Photos: Dave Roberts.
As mist settles on the hills surrounding this secluded spot in Gifford, 25 miles east of Edinburgh, it feels like we’ve happened upon a deserted country house. Chippendale International School of Furniture is out for summer, and stalking around its exhibition hall, quiet but for our footfall thundering across the rugged floorboards, the atmosphere is eerie. Perhaps we’re hearing distant echoes, glimpses of movement just beyond our vision – hints of the life that usually fills the place.