Brian Boggs Makes Stunning Outdoor Furniture
Brian Boggs Builds Beautiful Fine Furniture by Hand
With over twenty five years of experience in the hand-made craft furniture industry, Brian Boggs of Brian Boggs Chairmakers has expanded into luxury outdoor furniture through the Boggs Outdoor Seating line. Using the same ideals of superior workmanship, quality comfort, and product longevity that Boggs applies to his indoor furniture products, the artisanal builders at Brian Boggs Chairmakers build this new and visionary outdoor furniture by hand, made to order. Based in the Brian Boggs Chairmakers Workshop in Asheville, North Carolina, this process ensures that each piece is unique in its grooves and coloring, while Brian’s knowledge of design and comfort guarantees the furniture will feature an ergonomic design with organic, graceful style and enduring resilience. Boggs Chairmakers is also committed to client transparency. To see the process and samples of the finished products, feel free to stop by the showroom at any time.
Brian Boggs, Master Chairmaker
How Boggs Got into the Business
Brian Boggs has been building artisanal seating by hand for the past 25 years. How did Brian originally get into Chairmaking? He was a struggling artist in his early 20’s, picked tobacco in the fields every fall and occasionally did carpentry work. It was during one of these carpentry jobs that he stumbled across John Alexander’s “Make a Chair from a Tree.” Since at that time he had little money for tools, Brian sharpened the end of a screwdriver to function as a chisel and started working on making his first stool. Soon afterwards, he made his first chair by following the same process that John Alexander outlined in his book.
Boggs Reinvents Himself
Some 20 years later, Boggs had grown his businesses by reinventing the Ladderback Chair and had perfected every tool and technique to produce them. However, not satisfied with every aspect of his business, Boggs decided to focus on the biggest problem of all: how to make a decent living while producing top-notch work. This was a problem that had bothered him and many other professional woodworkers for decades. At that time, Boggs had a spacious shop setup in Berea, Kentuky. Boggs had produced many chair making innovations such as his Rube Goldberg contraption that sliced hickory bark into thin strips for his traditional chair seats, light-bulb kilns for super-drying tenons, slat-bending forms shaped like a human back, a huge custom steam tank, a sharpening method that involved diamond dust, his improved version of the classic shaving horse, and a host of other machines…Brian had made all these chair making innovations but didn’t have a clear answer for the best way to charge for a chair that was a result of 20 years of design and development.
Boggs decided that the solution was to start over, to change his location, reshape his career, and revolutionize his business model. He needed to break away from the stigma of just being a ladderback chairmaker and reinvent himself into something totally new and unique. The move from Berea, KY to Asheville, NC was key because Asheville is a well known center for arts, fine craftsman, and wealthy vacationers. After he moved to Asheville, Boggs faced the normal woodworker’s challenges of wood sourcing, attracting skilled workers, marketing his work, finding enough time do to the design work, joint testing, and tool development. The breakthrough really came with his decision to hire business consultants to help him make a bold new strategic plan. Together they came up with The Boggs Collective. The idea behind the Boggs Collective was the combination of “strength in numbers” with the “craftsman infrastructure” that would support newer craftsman emerging into the workworking field. The Collective would provide these craftsman with the appropriate training they needed, show them how to source the best woodworking materials, offer them design templates that match their skill level, give them the marketing resources that they would need to be successful, and provide them the best guidance in their careers. The Boggs Collective provides designs to a variety of craftsman who use them and then takes a smaller royalty when they are used. The Collective takes in interns and provides them high quality training.
Brian Boggs In the Present Day
30 years later, anyone can now walk through the doors of Brian Boggs Chairmakers and see Brian’s workshop, gallery, and tour the 4,000 square foot facility. The gallery features Brian’s full line of wood furniture, a heavily sculptural musician’s chair, dining tables, a six-slat rocking chair, headboards, classic Ladderback Chairs, Brian’s famous Sunniva outdoor chairs, and much more. Based right in Biltmore Village, Brian Boggs Chairmakers have a vision for making furniture with the highest quality of design, the most thorough craftsmanship, and an integrated sustainability model for the production of handmade furniture. The focus is to produce efforts that stimulate the local and regional Asheville community, provide an infrastructure that allows woodworkers to focus on their passion, and to please clients with handcrafted furniture that is beautiful and timeless. The Mission is to “provide world-class furniture to the market place” with a vision of inspiring “a genuine culture of excellence in the furniture industry.” Boggs has worked very hard to instill the core values of Excellence, Innovation, Integrity, and Social/Environmental Responsibility into every aspect of his business.
Getting a Flavor For His Modern Work
Inspired about the thriving music scene in Asheville, Boggs spent a great time and energy focusing on designing the Sonus Musician’s Chair. This chair is born out of a collaboration with guitarists and decades of ergonomic study. It’s a work of “beautifully articulated expression” designed for the physical benefit of musicians. Each chair is custom designed to the musician’s dimensions and carefully handcrafted for the physically demanding work that is required out from all accomplished musicians.
Porch swings remind us of hanging out with friends and family during the spring, summer, or fall seasons. Ergonomics is at the center of attention with the Sunniva Swing. With bent laminated back seat boards and supports, the Sunniva swing offers superb swinging comfort. The long curve main beam makes for a super strong frame with no obstruction of view.
Brian Boggs Chairmakers’ Sunniva Arm Chair line is the beauty of allowing furniture to “live outdoors.” Every one of these Sunniva handmade chairs are built to expertly handle the weather and outdoor elements. How? Because these chairs have been built through careful lumber selection and unique in-shop processes…resulting in a chair that provides amazing comfort and outdoor strength. Now, everyone who loves the outdoors and can really enjoy it much more with this Sunniva collection.
The classic ladderback handmade chair is really the initial piece that Brian Boggs based his reputation on. He created this now-standard design by building a prototype out of a woodworking book with zero power tools. Over the years, Brian has again and again refined the Classic Ladderback into its now perfect and beautiful form.
Be sure that you see the Lilly Dining Chairs from our Lily Collection. These luxury dining chairs are named for the flower that inspired the original design. Each chair is born out of passion for natural beauty and design and marries form and function. These chairs are “finely crafted works of art.” This is luxury seating that its a pleasure to use.
If you find the Lily luxury dining chair interesting, then you will adore the Lily table. Just like the Lily luxury dining chair, the Lily table is solid wood carved with the fluidity and movement of flower petals. This creation has a sensuous design and showcases the Brian Boggs expertise in design and engineering. Of course, each luxury dining chair needs a beautiful luxury table. And, since each Lily table is custom made to fit your home, this is a beautiful difference that will be seen, heard, and felt…each time you sit down to enjoy a meal.
A Custom Rocking Chair is a beautiful and unique gift. Whether you are celebrating a baby shower, anniversary, birthday, or other occasion, these artful chairs are truly handcrafted heirlooms that make timeless gifts. The thing about a custom rocking chair is that it can be passed down from one generation to the next. Each time it is passed down, the rocking chair will carry the story of your family with it, imparting a lasting legacy that will be known for ages to come.
Now Available: The Sunniva Collection
Named after the gaelic “gift from the sun,” Sunniva was the name of a saint whose body survived without any blemish for over two hundred years. Boggs Chairmakers liken the name to the unique radiating slats of the chairs’ backs, and the fact that Boggs furniture stands the test of time. The Boggs chairmakers also said they could imagine their customers sitting on the porch in the warm sunlight with a cool drink, looking out on the Blue Ridge Mountains. The Sunniva collection currently features a variety of pieces, including rocking chairs, a deluxe rocker option, an outdoor armchair set, outdoor cocktail tables with an especially sun-like design, and the majestic Sunniva swing. The collection’s high durability is perfect for a glass of lemonade or a cup of hot chocolate, being by the pool or next to the snowman. Whether you’re enjoying your quiet golden years by bird watching or need a place to relax from the continuous action of family life, the Sunniva collection will meet your needs.
Back to Basics: How This Outdoor Furniture Was Crafted
When Brian was beginning his career, Brian didn’t have any fancy power tools or new age woodworking apparatuses. What he had was a few hand-me-down woodworking implements, his own two hands, old-fashioned hard work, dedication and innovation. The new Sunniva line has continued Brian Boggs Chairmakers’ tradition of ambition, modernity and grace.
Boggs has created his own tools and techniques to make sure that his products are comfortable and have the distinctive Brian Boggs Chairmakers silhouette. First, each board is built out of a “sandwich” of laminate board, which makes the boards both flexible and strong. Then a secret tool, developed in the Brian Boggs Chairmakers workshop and only used here, is applied to shape each board so they will fit the intended chair or table perfectly, like a puzzle piece.
Brian Boggs Chairmakers goes beyond its immense collections, and can work with you on custom pieces that fulfill your wildest dreams. Whether it’s end tables, dining sets, indoor rockers or chairs, bed frames, case goods, or even a custom musician’s chair, the team at Brian Boggs Chairmakers will work with you to create durable, beautiful furniture you’re guaranteed to be head over heels about.