Chair Making

The communes of Rancy and Bantanges near Louhans in the Bresse area of Saone et Loire are famous for their chair making skills.

The frames for the chairs are made by machines these days, but the straw for seats and backs is still put in place by hand - a skilled and lengthy job, taking between four and five hours for one chair. The basis of the upholstery is done with a grass called “lèche”, which for hundreds of years has been cultivated in the marshes of the river Seille. Over this is woven the final covering of rye straw.

The area exports these chairs all over the world, and still employs around 400 people in many small businesses.

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