Amidst a flutter of black-clad designers, the Prince of Denmark and the sounds of a 4-piece live jazz band, there was much to celebrate at the grand opening of the Carl Hansen & Son New York City Showroom. The Danish Fusion event showcased Carl Hansen & Son seating and tables, lighting by Pandul, silver collectibles and table objects from Georg Jensen and Kvadrat Soft Cells acoustic textiles on display. But the most interesting happening at the showroom was going on behind the scenes. Danish craftsmen from Carl Hansen & Son were busy hand-weaving the seat of the iconic Wishbone chair, designed by Hans Wegner and in uninterrupted production since 1950.
The Wishbone chair, which is produced in Denmark using steambent wood, has over 100 production steps all carried out by hand. In the video below, we see the process of hand-weaving the seat using 120 meters of papercord, a highly durable material used since 1950 at Carl Hansen & Son. It is constructed with 3 pieces of paper twisted together and then entwined again. At Carl Hansen & Son, the papercord is kept in a special temperature and humidity controlled room in order to maintain the same finish on every chair. The technique you see takes about 3 months to learn. Each wishbone chair takes about 45 minutes to weave compared with the CH25 easy chair takes about 8 to 9 hours.
The dinging in the background is from a craftsman demonstrating the precision and work that goes into hand-hammered silver.