This chair story rocks!

Hal Taylor and his children during story-telling time.

Hal Taylor has been an avid reader all his life, and passed on the habit to his children early on. Over time, the story-telling sessions presented a problem: the furniture maker and rocking chair specialist from Stanley, Virginia (US), did not have a lap large enough to accommodate all his three children.

Drawing on his quarter-century experience, Hal soon devised his now-legendary ‘Story Time Rocking Chair’ where all his three children could have a comfortable seat when reading.

Every piece of wood in the chair is carefully matched; each seat is bilaterally symmetrical; and each joint is perfect because it is hand-planed.

The 19 back braces in each rocking chair are made out of more than 200 precisely cut and shaped pieces of wood. The back braces are cut sequentially from the same carefully selected board.

Every board in the chair is matched to the one next to it. In order to fabricate one of these chairs Hal has to cut 262 separate pieces of wood. But when ready, the headrest grain matches, the back braces match and so on.

In interactions with the press, Hal signs off with his typical wisdom: “Of all of the things you have spent money on in the last 20 years, how many of them will ever be used by your great grand-children? This chair will!”

Hal has written a book about two-decade expertise in making rocking chairs, which he sells along with templates and a DVD. (



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