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Expert Mid-Century Modern MCM Woven Furniture Repair

Caning Canada - Seat Weaving While RVing

Mid-century Modern - a style of design of roughly the 1930s through the mid-1960s characterized by clean lines, streamlined organic forms, and lack of embellishment.

Woven furniture has a place within all design eras and styles.

Mid-Century Modern MCM Weaving Material, Project Samples, and Explanations

Danish Cord, Seagrass, Fibre Rush, and Cane Woven Chair Restoration

Danish Cord Woven Chairs

Danish paper cord is a twisted paper cord used to weave seats since the 1920s.

Danish modern furniture gained popularity after World War II in Denmark and other European countries.

Mid-century and modern Danish cord chairs are woven with the standard basket weave pattern using Danish hook nails or a no-nail technique.

The other pattern Danish cord is woven with is the traditional rushing pattern.

Chair frames are designed to accept a specific weaving style and gauge or cord size and are, therefore, not interchangeable.

Following this link, you will find a much more detailed explanation of Danish cord weaving styles, materials, and restoration methods.

Danish Cord Material, Care, and Cleaning

Everything You Need to Know About Danish Cord Repairs

Seagrass Woven Chairs

Seagrasses are the only flowering plants able to live in seawater and pollinate while submerged. They often grow in large groups giving the appearance of terrestrial grassland or underwater meadow.

The seagrass used in chair weaving comes from Asia. The seagrass is twisted to form a green rope material when newly woven and will brown as it ages. 

Seagrass is a courser and more rigid material than the Danish cord material. It tends to sit a bit more proud and offers beautiful tones in the twisted grass. 

Seagrass can be woven in different patterns, as shown above; however, many chairs are designed to accept a specific gauge or size of material and pattern.

Some exceptions to this rule are ladderback chairs and stools. 

Learn More

Fibre Rush Woven Chairs

Fibre rush is a durable one-ply, a twisted paper resembling real bull rushes. 

Paper fibre or "fibre reed" was introduced when China had an embargo on rattan reed exportation. 

Paper fibre became the substitute for natural rattan reed. Material is wrapped around the four dowels framing the square of a seat, creating four triangles.

Care and maintenance for fibre rush woven chairs are the same as the care and maintenance of Danish cord, as both materials are twisted paper. 

Caning Canada often converts rawhide chairs to fibre rush or Danish cord. They can easily accept Shaker tape as well. 

The French Canadian Cloverleaf chairs are hand-carved in Quebec and found woven in rawhide, seagrass, and fibre rush.  Caning Canada doesn't offer leatherwork. We love to see these beautiful chairs restored using Danish cord, fibre rush, seagrass, or Shaker tape. The frame of the Cloverleaf and other ladder-back chairs are typically unobstructed, allowing the restoration material to suit the chair owner's taste. 

Isn't it wonderful when an unobstructed frame offers the flexibility to accent many personal decors? I love it.  

Binding Cane / Rattan

Rattan or binding cane is a thicker gauge of cane used to wrap the backs and seats of many mid-century pieces creating intriguing patterns with an airy depth and character.

More often than not the cane to wrapped around the frame of the woven piece using a no-nail technique.

Binding cane is also used to wrap lamps, pod chairs, and to create magazines shelves for tables

Hans Olsen's rocking chair is an iconic piece creating intrigue and interest in its simple airy form.

More than once I've come across beautiful cane back lounge chairs that have been incorrectly restored by drilling holes through the frame of the backrest. There is absolutely no reason to butcher these wonderful woven chairs. The backrest can be removed and mailed to Caning Canada at our winter site in Fort Langley from mid-October to mid-April for expert cane restoration. 

I can appreciate that weaving restoration is a lost art, and I would much rather see pieces in use than in a landfill, however, to permanently alter these frames is a shame. 

Binding Cane

Pre-Woven Cane

So many mid-century woven chairs, tables, and even daybeds sport pre-woven cane surfaces.

Many of these pieces were designed with close weave cane patterns.

Care and attention to detail are key when restoring these beautiful cane pieces. Many of these woven surfaces can be removed from the frame and mailed to Caning Canada for cane restoration. 


Close Weave Pre-woven Cane

Close Weave Pre-woven Cane


Three Panel Pre-woven Cane

Three Panel Pre-woven Cane

When a woven piece has multiple panels and curves, cane repair becomes a new dance.

Every piece wants you to step through the cane installation in a particular order.

When you get the dance right, the cane submits and shows its appreciation for decades of beauty.

You can extend the enjoyment of this beauty with proper care and maintenance of the woven surfaces. 

Care & Cleaning

Pre-Woven Cane

Handwoven Cane 

Talk about curves.

The vintage Louis XVI style faux bois wood chair is exquisitely hand-carved and designed to emulate nature. This beautiful piece is blind or French caned with not one but two curves. 

Being a master weaver isn't just about years of experience, knowing and understanding weaving techniques, or naturally feeling the form and tension.  

Blind Caned Double Curve

Blind Caned Double Curve


Blind Caning

Blind Caning

It's about finding the reason within the chaos and taming it to structure and form.

Handwoven Cane

Hand Caned Curved Chair

Hand Caned Curved Chair

Design Styles

Modern furniture - The Modernist movement began in the early 1900s with the Bauhaus School of Design.

Mid-century Modern - a style of design of roughly the 1930s through the mid-1960s characterized by clean lines, streamlined organic forms, and lack of embellishment.

Vintage refers to something authentic from an era at least twenty years ago, while retro is new items made to imitate past items.

Bohemian is personal and relaxed. Boho styles are not styled for any other person’s enjoyment but your own.

Japandi design combines the elements of Japanese and Scandinavian designs to create beautiful simplistic functionality and a connection to nature.

Scandinavian design refers to Demark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden pieces. Scandinavian design has returned due to its clean lines, natural elements, and emphasis on sustainability.

Hygge (pronounced “hyoo-guh”) is a Danish word that most closely translates to cozy in English.

A minimalist home showcases pieces like an art gallery and isn't cluttered.

Eclectic interiors can be thought of as “opposites attract,” an example being mixing a farmhouse-style chair with an art deco piece.

French country balances old with new. Some pieces in the room are new; others might be vintage finds or an heirloom that’s been passed down.

Hollywood interior design is a combination of mid-century modern and art deco. Lines are clean decorative details, balancing beauty and function.

Rustic interiors let natural beauty shine with wood, stone, and other organic elements. Rustic allows the character of each piece to stand out.

Coastal or cottage styles create a soothing place incorporating clean and simple with pops of natural tones and colours.