Bashful ball-and-claw-foot chair

Craft & Design Furniture & Lighting
Bashful ball-and-claw-foot chair


Jake Cress is a gifted cabinetmaker in Fincastle, Virginia. Besides traditional pieces in the Chippendale vein, he makes whimsical “animated furniture,” several pieces of which can be viewed on his site. But my personal favorite by far has to be “Oops,” the embarrassed claw-foot chair that has dropped its ball, and wants to sneak it back before anybody notices.

6 thoughts on “Bashful ball-and-claw-foot chair

  1. Randy says:

    Wow, does that bring back memories. My Grandmom use to have a chair that was almost exact to this one. I sat it it wrong and it broke the claw off. This was 35-40 years ago.

  2. Les says:

    Brilliant! But some credit must be due to a a virtually identical cartoon by Gahan Wilson, in a collection of cartoons published in 1967, titled “The Man in the Cannibal Pot.”

    1. Sean Michael Ragan says:

      Your comment made me curious, Les, so I looked up this book at the UT library, and I found the cartoon you mentioned. It’s on p. 26 in their paperback 1970 Avon edition. I thought about scanning the cartoon for everyone, but I don’t think I can get away with infringing Mr. Wilson’s copyright with a clean conscience.

      But you’re right: the cartoon is similar. To a point. It shows a claw-foot chair sharpening both its “front” claws on the carpet as thought it were a house cat. I’m not completely convinced it’s close enough to prove for certain that Mr. Cress derived his “bashful chair” idea from the same source, however. Still, an interesting connection, an d a cool book I would not otherwise have known about. Thanks for pointing it out!

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I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.

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