Congratulations, and Happy Birthday! I am honored that your parents have chosen to give you one of my Roorkhee chairs as your 21st birthday gift. I believe that you will have many years of comfortable and enjoyable use from it. In fact, with a modest measure of stewardship, I believe that your heirs will enjoy it for many years as well.
A piece of hand made furniture, constructed of quality materials, is a rare luxury these days. Most folks purchase their first piece of factory made furniture with no thought as to its future once they are done with it. In fact, most furniture goes to a landfill after its first owner. By contrast, your Roorkhee chair is made by myself as one of no more than a pair, with the finest material available. The quality of materials, and construction practices using copper rivets and hand stitching will ensure that your chair will last for generations to come.
The wood for your chair is sustainably harvested African sapele, imported by Edensaw Hardwoods of Port Townsend, Washington. The finish is two pound cut garnet shellac, polished with dark wax. The leather is heavy English bridle leather from Wickett and Craig of Curwensville, Pennsylvania. They have been tanning hides since shortly after the Civil War, and produce what I believe to be the best quality leathers in North America.
The vegetable tanned leather, although comfortable, will initially be very stiff. You will find however, that with time and use the leather will become even more comfortable, much like a new pair of shoes or a quality baseball glove. Given that the chair will change with use, two chairs that are identical when sold, will start to become unique within minutes of use. In time, your chair will fit you so well that you will come to think if it as a welcome friend at the end of your day.
A very small amount of leather conditioner, once a year, should be sufficient to keep your chair in good form until you pass it on to its next owner, who will probably be asking about it shortly after they hear of your passing.
Enjoy with best regards,
One thought on “Letter to a young customer”
You make me want to cry Tom…I know that Michael will revere it “as a welcomed friend”. Chuck and I will be putting it together this afternoon in advance of Michael’s homecoming from his DC internship on August 13th…his 21st birthday. I’m looking forward to him reading your post, as he sits in it with his first glass of legal, very fine scotch. Many thanks for making it possible for our son to have an extraordinary gift. I know him, and he will indeed be a good steward in this generation.
Love, Teri and Chuck