Maloof Inspired Rocking Chair

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Project by knothead posted 10-17-2014 05:28 PM 2528 views 7 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Maloof Inspired Rocking Chair
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I have another Grandchild due November 6th 2014 and wanted to make something special for him/her and Mother to share and maybe to eventually be passed down as he/she grows older.

Several years ago I attended a Maloof Rocker Seminar and had the opportunity to sit in an original Maloof Rocker. From that moment until now building one has been on my “to-do” list. Well, enter a grandchild, JUST the motivation one needs to step out of their comfort zone and try something new.

This is made of Cherry with Ebony plugs and Walnut accents in the rockers and finished with the Maloof finish purchased from Rockler. I have approx 3 1/2 months of work in this (mostly weekends and an hour or two here and there where I could steal them).

I was VERY intimidated by this project going in and researched it ENDLESSLY until one day I found Scott Morrison’s website. I purchased his DVD and the templates, I even called him once and then finally choked down my apprehension and started cutting wood.

His DVD set (Build an Elegant Rocking Chair) and the templates were extremely helpful in the process. As a first time builder it was my goal to follow his example as closely as I could, well, my experience level and propensity for making mistakes ruined that idea very quickly. All the better, because even though I used his work and guidance in the DVD set to make my way thru this build, I should not have intended or expected to build HIS chair. Redoing my mistakes and adapting to my abilities left me with my very own chair.

Now, we all know that EVERY rocker of this type is heavily influenced by Sam Maloof and it shows in every one I have ever looked at no matter who built it and yet, in some way, they are all unique and individual as this one is.

I could have NEVER just started from scratch at my skill level and built this chair but I learned thru the process that it really is not as hard as it seems when you are standing there, staring at a pile of lumber and a picture of the desired end result in your hand, all with a huge lump in your throat wondering to yourself just how are you ever going to get from one to the other.

There are many things I will do differently on the next one and many lessons learned to apply to that effort but it really wasn’t as hard as I imagined. Visually I am pleased with the results even though I can see every small mistake made along the way. We are our own worst critics, aren’t we?

I have to give credit where credit is due……

To Sam Maloof, for inspiring me to bigger things than casework and tables THANK YOU!

To Scott Morrison – if you are a member here, even if not…..THANK YOU for the “helping hand” in this project via your DVD set.

And to the Grandchild I haven’t met yet….THANK YOU sweetheart for the motivation. WELCOME! I wish you peace and long life.

-- So Much Wood - So Little Time! --

20 comments so far

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 2963 days

#1 posted 10-17-2014 06:00 PM

Fantastic. You’ve got every right to be proud of that.

-- Brian Timmons -

View mcoyfrog's profile


4757 posts in 4072 days

#2 posted 10-17-2014 06:46 PM

Love it!!! I’m sure the soon to come little one will love being in it also

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

View exelectrician's profile


2339 posts in 2905 days

#3 posted 10-17-2014 07:16 PM

Your chair is great – I really liked the part in your story, staring at a pile of lumber with a lump in your throat, and the picture of the finished product, so many projects get started and are never finished – But you followed through , well done!!

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

View SugarbeatCo's profile


142 posts in 2746 days

#4 posted 10-17-2014 07:33 PM

Just beautiful..

-- Always one more tool away from being an excellent woodworker...

View Northwest29's profile


1678 posts in 2968 days

#5 posted 10-17-2014 08:09 PM

That is one gorgeous chair and very well crafted. I admire of the craftspeople who have the patience to create such beautiful chairs. Well done!

-- Ron, Eugene, OR, "Curiosity is a terrible thing to waste."

View Todd's profile


413 posts in 2154 days

#6 posted 10-17-2014 08:15 PM

Absolutely beautiful!!! Great job!

-- Todd, Huntsville, AL

View Mathew Nedeljko's profile

Mathew Nedeljko

715 posts in 4308 days

#7 posted 10-17-2014 08:40 PM

Well done…on my bucket list too.

-- Aim high. Ride easy. Trust God. Neale Donald Walsch

View PaulJerome's profile


57 posts in 3511 days

#8 posted 10-17-2014 09:04 PM

I really like the rocker! Job well done and I also enjoyed your write up. I haven’t had the courage to start one of these yet, however, you have inspired me to revisit that goal. Thank you!

-- Paul, Central Illinois

View SPalm's profile


5334 posts in 4360 days

#9 posted 10-17-2014 10:29 PM

Just a beautiful chair. I am in awe.
I hope to try something like this someday…..


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View Mean_Dean's profile


6982 posts in 3625 days

#10 posted 10-18-2014 12:01 AM

Beautiful Maloof rocker! I’m sure the new mom, and new rugrat will really love it!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View Canadian Woodworks's profile

Canadian Woodworks

702 posts in 3548 days

#11 posted 10-18-2014 12:26 AM

Well done!

-- Paul Lemiski, Ontario Canada, Custom Wooden Rocking chairs and tables

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3168 days

#12 posted 10-18-2014 12:27 AM

That is a gorgeous rocker that will get more beautiful as that cherry ages. I don’t see any goofs! A Maloof rocker is my ultimate goal. I just need to work up the courage to jump into one.
Congrats on a job well done!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View R_Stad's profile


426 posts in 2321 days

#13 posted 10-18-2014 01:54 AM

Great job and write up. Excellent work on your shaping, particularly the arms. Beautiful chair – beautiful wood. Well done.

-- Rod - Oregon

View knothead's profile


163 posts in 4426 days

#14 posted 10-18-2014 04:24 AM

Thank you all for your kind words!

To those who are intimidated, there is no need to be. Before I started this rocker I could be found in the corner of the shop sucking my thumb, I was so apprehensive about it only to find that it really is much easier than you think before you begin. Go for it you will be glad you did

-- So Much Wood - So Little Time! --

View knothead's profile


163 posts in 4426 days

#15 posted 10-18-2014 04:28 AM

Canadian Woodworks I have been a frequent visitor to your site and absolutely love the work you do so your simple “Well Done!” is a real compliment!

Anyone who has not visited Paul’s website or his YouTube Channel please do, you will be suitably impressed by what you see there.

Thank you Paul!

-- So Much Wood - So Little Time! --

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