octavious Reader
4/26/14 8:27 a.m.

So we are moving to a new house with a really nice deck and a covered front porch. We have no outdoor furniture besides two Adirondack chairs someone gave us years ago. I'm pretty sure Mrs. Octavious is already planning to put those on the front deck. In addition, I'm not really a fan of paying the big box stores for their stuff that only seems to last a season or two, and I can't afford the prices of custom outdoor furniture builders. So in true Grassroots style I want to build my own furniture. (Or attempt it). But...I don't really know where to start.

I know sorta what I want, which is a nice sitting area, and somehow working my outdoor chimney into the mix. The chimney is one of this big metal jobs with the wrought iron sides. (I'll attach a pic if I have one) I also know I don't really want any of that cheap PVC type furniture, and no bar height tables or chairs. Other than that I'm kinda open. Also the new deck is open, no post or railings, if is only about two feet off the ground. I'd like to keep that open feeling as much as possible while possibly adding a little privacy. I'll see if I can add a pic of the deck later too, that might help explain it better.

So who has BTDT on outdoor furniture?

Woody GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/26/14 8:50 a.m.

Some nice ideas here:


nicksta43 UltraDork
4/26/14 9:59 a.m.

Congratulations on the new house. How's the garage situation?

mazdeuce UltraDork
4/26/14 10:10 a.m.

I'd break out the welder and let my creative side flow.

ncjay Dork
4/26/14 7:13 p.m.

octavious Reader
4/27/14 11:38 a.m.

Nicksta- slight oversized two car. Enter from the rear (that's what she said) but it has a good size driveway and an extra parking pad. Which is good because I won't have to move cars if I want to flip from the Jeep to the 911 every other day.

I actually like the hay bales but I know that won't go over. I'm thinking more like a wooden love seat and chair. Maybe a small table to set drinks on. More of a lounge area than an eating area.

DaveEstey UberDork
4/28/14 8:18 a.m.

How handy are you?

volvoclearinghouse Dork
4/28/14 8:45 a.m.

A few years back I was at the dump and some guy was about to toss three rusty old metal chairs and a loveseat into the scrap metal bin. They were wrought iron, and pretty. I persuaded him to let me have them. Set my wife loose on them with a wire brush on a drill, and a few coats of rustoleum later they are our new outdoor fireplace furniture. Total cost: $10 for wire wheel and about a can of rustoleum per chair.

Surf Craigslist, you'll find stuff like this.

captdownshift GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
4/28/14 8:50 a.m.

used shipping crates are your friend, pallets to s degree when in good shape, but crates are even better. Flagstone and granite reminates are great for table inlays. Reclaimed used doors and shutters can also be quite useful

captdownshift GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
4/28/14 9:35 a.m.

also wooden spools from cable are useful

octavious Reader
4/28/14 11:46 a.m.
DaveEstey said: How handy are you?

I'm pretty handy. But I mostly know car stuff. I do all the house projects we've ever had fixtures, electrical, I've also built a deck, and put up a couple split rail fences.

I think my issue is more along the lines of, I'm not real creative. If I have plans to build something I can build it. However, if I have a pile of wood and you say build me a birdhouse, it might come out as a birdhouse, but not a pretty one, and definitly not a straight one. For example, used doors and shutters as tables, I never would have thought of that. It's a cool idea, but more than likely I would toss them as scraps.

DaveEstey UberDork
4/28/14 12:02 p.m.


edizzle89 Reader
4/28/14 12:20 p.m.
captdownshift wrote: also wooden spools from cable are useful

we just finished our rock patio out back and we use a spool for an end table and have some pallets stacked up that my wife put cloth over to make bench seating, all free from the guy down the block who must do some kind of industrial work.

also an old spool and sheet of plywood screwed together make a fast and easy beer pong table

NOHOME SuperDork
4/28/14 12:39 p.m.

Every porch needs a swing.

RossD PowerDork
4/28/14 1:36 p.m.

I'm starting to build furniture and I often I will search google for a type of furniture with pdf in the search string. That way it finds plans that are easy to print and go build. I also like my pocket hole jig (Kreg Jig).

scardeal Dork
5/1/14 8:22 a.m.

Just watch the Wood Whisperer. He'll give you some ideas.

Or maybe Woodworking for Mere Mortals:

Or, for a bit of fun, Stumpy Nubs:

Dusterbd13 Dork
5/1/14 8:43 a.m.

Hqlaving run a buisness specialized in outdoor furniture, what types of furniture are you looking for and what finish?

Rusnak_322 Dork
5/1/14 4:08 p.m.

Google pallet patio furniture

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
10/20/20 5:00 a.m.

After having a lot of outdoor furniture over the years we finally settled on the black steel stuff you see at most restaurants. You know, made of 3/8 rod and expanded steel painted black. It's relatively cheap, very durable, pretty comfortable, and can be spruced up with cushions for more comfort or color. 

We are expanding the patio though, so I want to add some Adirondack style chairs and a fire pit. I just found this cool design from the Rogue Engineer yesterday: 

Mostly straight cuts but has a rounded back. Easy to build (jigsaw and circular saw is all you need) but looks cool.  His site rogueengineer.com has free plans and how to videos. 

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