Monday, August 8, 2016

So I Built Some Outdoor Seating

Guys!  This post makes me so happy!  You know I love changing out lights and door knobs and painting furniture.  But building things with my own hands?  Such an awesome feeling!

For this project, I researched different forms and designs, but at the end of the day, I really wanted traditional.  I went with some plans from Popular Woodworking August 2005 edition- Norm Abram's Adirondack Chair.  The good news?  The plans had pretty pictures.  The bad news?  You had to freehand each piece as everything was printed on regular 8.5 X 11 paper.  But in the end, it all worked out!  As you can see, we had to use random things in the garage to make arches.  A girls gotta do what a girls gotta do!

I decided that I wanted to do 6 chairs.  I know, right?  Overachiever, party of one!  My thought was that I was going to do each step 6 times because I know myself.  I knew that if this project sucked ass and I got two chairs completely done, I'd want to stop at the two.  So I figured that if I never finished one chair until I was on the final step of ALL the chairs, I wouldn't be able to stop because once I finished the first chair, I'd basically have to finish all six since I'd be on that last step!  Makes sense to me!

I will say that this was a project that definitely needs more than two hands.  There was no way that I would have been able to do it on my own.  Thank goodness that guy I picked up a few months back on the side of the road has stuck around.  Well Hot Toddy was all in when I said I wanted to build Adirondack chairs and one Saturday when we had a few free hours, we went and picked up enough wood to build at least one chair.  What we finally decided on doing was building one and making a template of each piece so that when the first one was built, if it worked, we'd have each piece where would could make four more pieces of that same piece and have all of the pieces cut and ready to just build away.

The first chair did take us quite a bit of time- between stopping and having to go to the store for supplies that we didn't realize we'd need and having to create the template by drawing freehand (and you know me and my perfectionist mentality) it sure felt like it was days of work before we had it done.  It didn't really take that long but three hours here and three hours there ended up being about 3 days for the final piece to be done.

This was the stopping point after day one.  The next day we almost finished!

And finally, the third day- 

And my favorite picture...

A comfy chair and a frozen margarita?  Count me in.  

Oh and Hot Toddy wanted a picture too.  Although his is sans margarita and plus girly beer.  

So now that we had a chair built and it SHOCKINGLY didn't collapse under the weight of my ass, we figured that this was chair we wanted to go with after we had made some minor changes along the way.  So we started making the templates for each piece.  It really went pretty quickly after that.  It felt almost like an assembly line with us busting out each piece 5 more times.  Then came the time to start building them.  

Don't mind the mess of a garage.  I'm working on that.  Plus, this made me realize my next house needs a bigger garage.  

Here are some in between shots of the process.  It will also show you how I definitely needed another set of hands.  How he held the pieces while I drilled or how he held the pieces while I took the picture.  HAH.  But it also shows how we went above and beyond and counter sunk all of the screws and covered them with wood pegs so that once they are done and/or painted, you wouldn't see 45 screws in the chair.  It'll be a nice, smooth surface.  The only things you'll be able to see are the carriage bolts- which I thought was fine.  

And yes, parentals, I know that flip flops are NOT proper attire.  It's all fun and games until a drill drops on your foot.  That may have happened.  Ouch.  

We made it to three done- enough to invite people over.  HAH!

 But then I decided to just go ahead and finish the six.

Since they are built with pressure treated wood, I can't paint them for about a year.  Need to give them enough time to dry out- which is totally frustrating.  Cuz you know what color they are going.

But doesn't it look like I could build another 4 at least to go around the back of the fire pit?  I mean, seriously.  I need to get on that.

It's been great though, sitting outside, relaxing in them. Or having a fire and just straight chillin in the yard!  I've even had neighbors who've either driven by or pushed their kids strollers by stop and ask about them.  Nothing like a little chair building to get to know your neighbors.  I've also had requests from friends for me to build them some too.  Ummmm no.  Not happening.  I'll certainly give you the plans though (see first paragraph!).  But they were pretty impressed.  And I will say- I even impressed myself with this one.  They may not be perfect or even or exactly what an Adirondack chair should be, but I'm totally fucking impressed.  I feel like a total bad ass that I can check this one off the list.  They've definitely been on the list for years!

As for the cost- go price out a good, solid wood Adirondack chair.  I dare you.  You're going to pay between $100-$160 per chair.  Well at the end of the day- my final cost per chair was just under $44.  FORTY-FOUR DOLLARS!  Are you effing kidding me?  It pays to DIY people.  It may have taken three weekends of my precious time and some long nights during the week sweating my titties off in the garage.  But in the end.... totally worth it!

And for my favorite spot to be lately-

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