Rush Materials

The traditional rush pattern resembles an envelope in shape, four triangles meeting in the centre of the seat. The pattern is created using a single continuous strand of material. The strand passes over and round the left corner of the front rail, through the centre of the seat, then over and around the left-hand adjacent side rail. From here the strand is bought up through the centre of the seat again then over and around the opposite right hand side rail, through the centre and over and around the front rail. This is the basic pattern repeated round and round the seat rails slowly building up from the four corners into the middle of the seat. There are many materials used to create a rush seat, traditionally Scirpus lacustris is the most common rush used to hand twist the plump golden seats we usually see. However, hand twisting rush is a true skill, it needs practice to achieve a strong and even weave. Today there are other materials which make the process a lot easier for everyone, even the complete novice. Paper fibre rush can look extremely realistic, it is as hard wearing but less expensive than fresh rush and far simpler to use. Pre-twisted rush is also now available, the good looks of real hand twisted rush, but without the hard work! Best of all renewing an old rush seat should not devalue a chair - re-seating, unlike other aspects of restoration will not damage it if done properly, but if you are ever in doubt about restoring anything, it is always best to speak to a local respected restorer for an opinion first. Then again, what good is a chair without a seat! If you would prefer someone else to do the work for you please click here to visit Former Glory's seat restoration page. Below are the varieties of rush products that we supply for DIY repair.

Real rush seat

Pre-twisted "reel rush"

Pre-twisted natural material supplied in coils. Please click on the image for prices and more details.
Paper fibre seat

Paper fibre rush cords

Randomly dyed paper fibre cord supplied in coils or hanks. Please click on the image for prices and more details.
Cordon French straw wrapped sedge

Cordon straw wrapped sedge

Pre-twisted french style straw wrapped sedge cord. Please click on the image for prices and more details.