He may be based in sunny Florida, but Victor Edwards is
no stranger to Centre County.
“My wife grew up there, in the Black Moshannon area, so it’s like our
second home,” he said.
At first Edwards was a candle-maker, “fooling around” with some
furniture on the side, just for fun. He brought a chair to a show, “just
for fun,” and the next thing he knew, it was sold.
Thus, a new career creating distinctive rope and oak swings and
hammocks was born.
The pieces are completely handmade by the artist, from the red oak wood
that he cuts himself to the rope seats that he and his daughter weave,
right onto the seat frames crafter using tools he makes specifically for
“It’s done with large wooden hooks, similar to what is used to tie
fishing nets,” he said. “I had always messed around with weaving and tying
knots from the time I was a Boy Scout.”
While much of the art for sale at the festival looks good, Edwards says
his pieces go one step further – they feel good, too.
“What people are attracted to is the comfort,” he said. “They conform
to your body, but they’re strong, so they fit someone who weighs 100
pounds or someone who weighs 300 pounds.”
Ranging in price from $100 for a basic hammock up to $800 or more for a
steamed bentwood rocker, the swings and rockers require Edwards get a
double tent in order to set up shop.
“I’ve got 5-foot-long porch rockers that seat three or four people,” he
said. “I need the room.”
For Edwards, doing the 20 or more shows he attends each year is one of
the best parts of the business.
“You’re just constantly getting pats on the back, all this positive
reinforcement,” he said. “After 30 years, it’s still exciting to design
furniture people love.”