Post 102: Jimi’s Chair
Guest post, occasioned by a transfer of accumulated items sourced for the re-creation of Jimi’s bedroom into store at the Museum. Its been a long and very detailed road, taking in seriously varied research on rugs, sling-type fire escapes, Victorian love tokens, and a real high point – THE CHAIR.
In the iconic Barrie Wentzell shots, Jimi sat in a distinctive dark wooden chair – but you can’t just shop for a ‘wooden chair’, try googling that and seeing how close you get. We eventually found that Jimi’s chair features cabriolet legs (or ‘cab legs’ as I now call them, faking an insouciant air). It has a crinoline stretcher – the curved bit connecting the legs at low level. And it has a smokers bow – the arms formed from a single piece – with backrest.
As ever, all we needed was to find just the right person to speak to. And these details were just enough to help us find Josh, from chairmakers Bates and Lambourne. Oh the joy, when someone whose expertise exactly fits your need gets excited about your questions and says those magic words ‘We’d love to do this!’
The chair is almost finished now, nearly ready for polishing. But we’re not sure – all those photos being mono – just how dark the polish was. Having come this far we’re not about to start making it up so we’re going to ask those who were there to dredge their memory banks once again, and get it as right as we can.