Thursday, July 3, 2014

DIY Adirondack Chairs

***A one year update is at the end of this post - 6/22/2015***

Hi.  My chairs are finished!  (Insert happy dance here)  All 6 adirondack chairs are built and stained.

Furniture planning, pricing and research started when we were planning the dock.  Outdoor furniture is expensive. This furniture is going to be over saltwater and in the sun all day.  Being the penny pincher that I am, I just couldn't spend a bunch of money on furniture that is going to corrode from salt water and bake all day.  I decided to go with adirondack chairs. Chairs from the local stores ranged from $120 - $150 and they were not made with stainless steel hardware.  Stainless steel is extremely important around salt water.  The salt water will not corrode the stainless like it will other hardware.  We have several neighbors up and down the canal that are having to redo their docks, stairs, decks, etc because they are falling down.  The nails have rusted and gave out.

After pricing and shopping around I decided to build my own.

I searched for over a month to find the right plan.  Its hard deciding what will be comfortable and the correct size by a 2D plan.  Generally, the adirondacks with curved backs and bottoms are the most comfortable so that was a must.  Also, I didn't want them to sit super low like a lot of the beach chairs do.  I finally came upon Skip to My Lou's plan.  Her chairs had the curves and she provided a template.  AWESOME!  This template was a huge time saver.  I didn't have to make a bazillion measurements to get all the curves right.  I just traced the template and cut.  It only cost about $7 at Office Depot to have the template printed at full size.

Click here to go to Skip to My Lou's blog post about the chairs.

Click here to go to template.  Print at 24" x 36"

This project is time consuming and take some skills.  I used a jig saw to cut out all the pieces then sanded them individually before they were put together.  Tracing, cutting and sanding takes some time but the assembly part goes fast.  Although these can be a one person job, it is nice to have an extra set of hands around to help hold while measuring and lining up.

Here are some progress photos.

I wanted to stain these a semi transparent dark blue.  The goal was to have a blue tint but still see grain.  I didn't want them solid because that dark blue will get super hot during the heat of the day.  The chairs sat outside for several days drying before I stained them.  When I put the stain on, I hated it.  In my moments of frustration and agitation I forgot to take a picture.  Trust me, it was bad.  I decided to go with a solid color stain.  Same color.   Same brand.  Just solid instead of semi transparent.  This is what I ended up with.

I am obsessed with navy right now so I love the color but its not what I had in my head.  Oh well.  They look good and the contrast is great.  The best part is each chair cost about $47 worth of materials, including the stainless steel hardware which is much more expensive than other materials.  Thank you to Skip to My Lou for providing free plans and instructions!

UPDATE 6/22/2015

The chairs have held up great!  They have been used for a year now and they still look like new.  The stain I used (Behr Premium Solid Weather Proofing in Atlantic) doesn't even look faded even though these chairs get no protection from the weather and sun.

Here are a few current pictures.

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Sharing at:  

Sunday - That DIY Party (DIY Show Off)

Monday - Inspire Me Monday (Sand & Sisal,  My Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaDomestically SpeakingSweet C’s Designs)  Made by you Monday (Skip To My Lou)

Tuesday - Twirl and Take a Bow (House on the Way, Déjà Vue Designs, All Things Heart and Home,

Wednesday:Wow Us Wednesday (Savvy Southern Style), Inspire Me Wednesday (Seven Thirty ThreeHappiness is Homemade)

ThursdayWhat To Do Weekends (Crafts ala Mode ), Friday Favorites Link Party  (I’m Not a Trophy Wife),  Thursday S.T.Y.L.E. Linky Party (A Prudent LifeLife in VelvetWell-Groomed HomeAddicted 2 DIY),  The Best DIY Party at the Handmade Hangout (A Glimpse Inside, Christina’s AdventuresFrom Gardners to BergersRedoux InteriorsToo Much Time on My Hands), Inspire Me Please, (Liz Marie Blog) Catch as Catch Can (My Repurposed Life)

Friday:  Best DIY Projects and Recipes Party (The Idea Room30 Handmade DaysWhipperberry, The 36th Avenue), Furniture Feature Friday (Miss Mustard Seed),  Anything Goes (Bacon Time),  Be. You. Tiful Link Party (Chic California), Creativity Unleashed (Practically FunctionalShaken TogetherOne Project CloserThe Bold Abode)  Fabulously Creative Friday (Jennifer Rizzo Blog)  Anonymous Weekend Party (Remodelaholic) Little Friday Link Up (The Grits Blog,  Living Lavender, Fleurty and Fit), Anything Blue Friday (The Dedicated House)


  1. Simply gorgeous, I wouldn’t mind spending a lazy summers afternoon sitting there and sipping some tea or some wine in the evening. I am so impressed with your work. Your home is a work of art, very inspired, unique and charming.
    Outdoor furniture Sydney

  2. I've been telling the hubs we need to make these chairs and now I'm gonna have to send him to this post to get him motivated! Thanks for sharing at The Makers!

    1. Thanks for visiting. The chairs are worth the effort. I saved so much money and I love them.

  3. Love these chairs. Want them even more now they cane be made for next to nothing. Thanks for sharing!

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  5. You are AWESOME!!!!! I love the chairs, love the blue...and LOVE the way they look on your dock! Thanks so much for linking to Twirl and Take a Bow! I'm gonna pin! xo

    1. Thanks for visiting, Robin! And thanks for the compliments.

  6. I love these! The color is great, you have a beautiful outdoor space to enjoy them on. Thank you for sharing at Friday Favorites!

  7. Thank you again for linking up at Friday Favorites, I chose you as one of my features from last weeks link up. I absolutely love these chairs!

  8. I LOVE your blue chairs!!! Do you mind sharing the brand of colored stain? I have an old cabinet that I would like to use outdoors, as a serving table for entertaining. We're thinking about putting casters on it ... and "painting" it a primary color such as red, purple, or yellow ... but it needs to withstand NC winters. Any ideas?

  9. First of all, I had no idea that these chairs were called "adirondack" chairs. Nor did I know that people could make these themselves! I would never have the patience to make one, let alone my wife. Congratulations on pushing through it! My wife and I really want some, but we'll probably end up buying them somewhere. Thanks for the post!

  10. شركة بسمة الرياض افضل وارخص شركة نقل عفش بالرياض على الفور فاذا كنت فى اى مكان فى الرياض وتعانى من نقل العفش المكتبى والعفش المنزلى فاذا كنت تعانى من كل ما هو غير مالوف وتبحث عن افضل النتائج فى اعمال النقل فعليك ان تعلم ان طريق النقل لم يكن له الا مكان واحد وهو شركة نقل عفش نظرا لما تعتمد عليه من خدمات من اجل ان يتم الوصول الى افضل النتائج المميزة فمن اهم ما تقوم بيه شركات نقل العفش بالرياض هو الاهتمام والاعتماد على افضل السيارات المميزة المتواجده فى الاسواق والتى تساعد فى القيام باعمال النقل الى اى مكان فى الرياض دون ان يتم تعرض العفش الى اى تغيرات بالاضافة الى اننا نعتمد على العماله والكوادر البشرية المميزة المتواجده فى الاسواق والتى تساعد فى القيام باعمال الفك والتركيب والحصول على افضل الخدمات وافضل النتائج دون ان يتم التعرض الى اى شىء غير مالوف وجوده فى العفش الان .
    تعتمد شركة بسمة الرياض افضل شركات نقل العفش على افضل الخدمات المميزة من القيام باعمال النقل خارج الرياض مع توفير كافه الاجراءات الجمركية التى تساعد فى اعمال النقل بالخاج والاهتمام بالتعرف على وسيله المواصلات المستخدمه برا او جوا او بحرا والاهتمام بكل ذلك يكن من خلال عدد من الوكلاء فى الخارج والتى تساعد فى القيام باعمال النقل للعفش الان على اعلى مستوى فلا تتردد فى التواصل مع بسمة الرياض الان .

  11. I believe the content matter here is rattling magnificent. I genuinely enjoyed reading this article. Thank you! office furniture for sale Jacksonville

  12. Hi
    I'm currently in the process of making one of these chairs. I've ran into an issue & really could use some input. When screwing the arms down to the legs & arm supports - how did you know exactly where to screw the arm boards down at? I appreciate any help you may have to offer on this. Thank you.