Longshot? Looking for Barrel Chair Pattern (2 Pics)

ladyamityJanuary 20, 2008


I am usually on the Decorating Forum but this is closer to woodworking so I'll try posting this here first.

Last year we stayed at a hotel.

One thing in particular that both me and my husband noticed were the two chairs at the little round eating table in front of the window.

For such simple chairs, they were soooo comfortable!

The chairs were just plywood frames covered with batting and then the upholstery was pieced on, almost like a slipcover, using velcro.

I am assuming the velcro, pieced slipcover was so the hotel could easily change the covers when soiled/stained.

I turned the chair over and the actual seat area was plywood with foam and then upholstery covering it and stapled on. The seat of the chair was in place using cleats around the inside barrel part of the chair.

(yes, we liked these chairs so much for comfort and the ability to glide wherever we wanted to, I inspected them completely! LOL)

We couldn't believe something so inexpensively made could be so comfy.

The bottom of the chairs at the hotel had gliders/casters which allowed them to roll closer to the window to see the view or roll a couple feet over to the laptop area.

We told each other how nice these would be in our own very small computer table/area. I have the PC and husband has the laptop and both are in a small area.

So now that I would like a pair of these chairs, I've searched the web for several days and can't find them at a reasonable price.

We are on a very tight DIY budget for almost everything done in our home and I just can't justfy paying $200 plus per chair right now especially now that I saw how inexpensively they were made/put together.

I'm thinking the upholstery of the chair is what is making it cost so much when I see them for sale on the web furniture sites?

I was lucky to find ONE on Craig's List and learned they are called barrel/guest/receptionist chairs.

Since I can't find two of these chairs for a decent price I started looking for a wood pattern but so far, have not been able to find one.

Can anyone here direct me to a site with wood patterns for these plywood barrel chairs?

Even better, is there someone in the very Southern Calif. area who would be willing to make these chairs---just the frame, and I could do the upholstery.

Thank you so very much for any help you can provide.


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Hi Amity,

I haven't seen (or at least haven't examined) one of these in person, but I'm wondering how the curved "barrel" was put together. There are really only two ways you can make a shape like that; one is to fasten together several flat staves with angled edges, creating a faceted curve. The other way is to bend and laminate several large, thin sheets of veneer or plywood together over a curved form. Either way, it's not a lickity-split process. It may look cheap because or a lack of fancy joinery, but it's only profitable to build them after a factory has built some special jigs and worked out a lot of kinks in their process. I'm going into such detail in hopes of saving you time, because you're not going to find a custom shop to make them as cheaply as you're wanting them.

I do think Craigslist is a good place to keep looking. Beyond that, maybe you can find a commercial wholesale furniture dealer that regularly sells to hotels and the like, that can sell you a couple of the un-upholstered frames?

    Bookmark   January 20, 2008 at 7:27AM
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Target.com has a wood chair that might make a good frame for $120.

Here is a link that might be useful: Target barrel chair

    Bookmark   January 20, 2008 at 9:48PM
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My apologies for not getting back here yesterday.
We spent 11 hours going from tile store to tile store (including 2 big box stores), getting totally conflicting information. By the time we got home, with all the walking and all the information swirling around in my grey matter, I was too tired to come in the computer area and turn it on.
But my tile fiasco is a whole 'nuther post under another forum. *grin*

Being weekend DIYers with just the basic knowledge of woodworking (simple cabinets/shelving/curios/wall framing), I had nooo idea of the complexity of the barrel portion of the chair.
Now I understand why the cost of these simple (to me) chairs are so expensive when I've found them online!

I am going to keep checking Craig's list---- maybe I can find two separate sellers that are selling similar chairs and I can go ahead and do the Velcro re-upholstery myself so that both chair look similar.

Thank you so very much for the great lesson on barrel/staves!


I love thinking out of the box (in fact, most of our DIY very Budget reno's have been because we couldn't afford what we really wanted but we were able to think out of the box and come up with something passable/presentable/comparable)
but this is something I hadn't considered --- what a great idea!!!
And I certainly like the look of the chair you linked. Very similar without the upholstery, and I think, with padding, doable!

At least now, between you and Jon, I've got other options -- Thank you so much!

    Bookmark   January 21, 2008 at 12:34PM
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Hi, I may be a little late but I found the chair you were looking for at the site for Walsh Bros. Office furniture.
I hope this helps.


Here is a link that might be useful: Barrel Chair

    Bookmark   January 5, 2009 at 5:49PM
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Addendum to last message: after clicking on the link, follow with clicking on: Fast, Easy & Affordable New Office Furniture then click on: Chairs & Seating and the chair you are looking for is:Faustino's Barrel Chair

Hope this helps.


    Bookmark   January 5, 2009 at 6:07PM
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I'm an airhead!!!

Here's the addy for the chair in your pic:


    Bookmark   January 5, 2009 at 6:24PM
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