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The Wicker WomanŽ-Cathryn Peters

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returns 11/01/2016

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I will answer any questions having to do with antique wicker furniture, wicker furniture repair and restoration, chair caning and all other types of chair seat weaving techniques and patterns. I DO NOT GIVE APPRAISALS or free WHAT IT'S WORTH valuations, nor do I buy/sell wicker furniture at this time.

Experience in the area

Since 1975 I've been repairing and restoring all types of wicker furniture from the 1880s-1940s, with a special interest in the Victorian era. I'm proficient in the repair and restoration of all types of chair seat weaving; hand-twisted cattail and bulrush, paper fiber rush, chair caning of all types, Shaker tape, Danish cord and seagrass. I also teach chair seat weaving at folk schools, basketry conventions and private individuals or groups. I also offer consultations, and will demonstrate and lecture on the craft topics of chair seating, wicker repair and basketry. I am also web master of, online since 1999 and founder and moderator of the Seatweaving & Chair Caning Forum since 2004.


Founding member and first President of The SeatWeavers' Guild, Inc. (TSWG 2007-2011), Seatweaving & Chair Caning Forum founder and moderator (2004-present), charter member of the National Basketry Organization, numerous regional and state basket guilds, and member of the Basketmakers' and Chair Seaters' Association (BA) located in the United Kingdom.


Woman's Day Budget Decorating Ideas 2006, Country Living August 2004, Finishing & Restoration Magazine, October 2002, Barbara Brabec's Handmade For Profit, Homemade Money-Starting Smart! and Homemade Money-Bringing in the Bucks!, Collector's Journal, Basketry Round-Up #2 by Shereen LaPlantz, Splint Woven Basketry by Robin Taylor Daugherty, 101 Best Home-Based Businesses for Women by Priscilla Y. Huff, Ralph & Terry Kovel's Yellow Pages of Restoration Experts, Small Town Minnesota from A-Z by Tony Andersen and monthly Wicker Furniture columnist for Minnesota's The Old Times newspaper in 1993 & 1994.


High school graduate, self-taught, and "school of hard knocks" for all the rest!

Awards and Honors

I've been involved in several unique wicker restoration projects such as weaving two wicker chairs for the Johnson Wax Replica Sikorsky S-38 Amphibian Airplane in 1998, then two more in 2000 for Buzz Kaplan, owner of Born Again Restorations, the company that created the replica Sikorsky, and did the restoration of all the wicker furniture in the Itasca State Park, Bemidji, MN during their Centennial celebration in 1995. I've also served as Chair Seatweaving Mentor to an apprentice through the Minnesota State Arts Board Folk Art Grant program in 2000, been the recipient of a McKnight/Arrowhead Regional Arts Council (ARAC) Career Opportunity Grant in 2004, and the recipient of a McKnight/ARAC Emerging Artist Fellowship in 2005.

Something interesting about this subject that others may not know:

Did you know that the wicker furniture industry began right here in the United States in the 1840s? Boston grocer, Cyrus Wakefield observed that bunches of rattan reed, used as dunnage to protect cargo on ships, were being discarded and thrown overboard. The enterprising man bought the rattan, made furniture out of it, starting the business that later became the Wakefield Rattan Company.

Something controversial or provocative about this subject

The word "wicker" is not a material, but rather the act of weaving a variety of materials or the final woven product. There is no such plant or material called, "wicker."

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Catherine de Tuede02/14/15101010 
Janee05/15/14101010EXCELLENT advice! I didn't know where to .....

Recent Answers from The Wicker WomanŽ-Cathryn Peters

2016-04-11 Wicker:

Hi Susan,    From the pictures you attached, the chairs are made of paper fibre rush wicker from the late 1920s, early 1930s. They have been refinished and reupholstered, but were done very well. Furniture

2016-03-23 vintage stroller:

Hi Lonnie,    What you have there is a Lloyd Loom doll or baby buggy (I can't tell size from the pictures), that was made sometime between 1917 when the Lloyd Loom weaving process began, and the 1930s

2016-02-24 Heywood Wakefield Chair:

Hi Lesley,    What a lovely, original stained and lacquered finish Heywood-Wakefield chair you have there! Most likely if you remove the upholstery on the seat, you will find evidence of, if not the actual

2015-02-02 sir lanka chair:

Hi Gloria,    What an interesting chair, I've never seen a hole-to-hole chair seat woven like that before in the corners. But you are in luck, just follow the previous weaver's design and everything will

2014-05-12 F.A. Whitney wicker baby carriage:

Hi Janee,    What an unusual wicker baby buggy that is. I've never seen the combination of the wicker hood and rim on the body, but then no wicker on the outside body. Maybe I'm not seeing the photo correctly


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