DIY Outdoor Garden Furniture




Introduction: DIY Outdoor Garden Furniture

About: Easy and affordable DIY projects and ideas.

With easy access to tools and materials for DIY enthusiasts, making outdoor garden furniture has become a growing trend that many like to take on as an alternative and affordable option for outdoor furniture.

With a few basic power tools and plan, any DIY enthusiast can make unique outdoor garden frniture that fits in with their lifestyle and budget. The Cavello patio furniture shown here is a great outdoor furniture project to start with and can be made using reclaimed wood or locally available soft or hardwoods.

I chose this outdoor garden furniture because of its simple design and smooth lines. Despite the simplicity, the furniture has modern appeal and can be stained or finished as you prefer. It is also an affordable project if you use reclaimed wood, meranti or pine. If you prefer a natural light, or blonde finish, similar to that shown here, after sanding all the pieces apply liming wax on a regular basis. Use this tip to make your own liming wax.


Step 1: Prepare the Planks for Joining

If you look closely as how this furniture is assembled, it consists of planks approximately 100mm wide and cut to length. There are a couple of methods that could be used for joining the planks together, dowels being one, but I have opted to show a method where a mortise is drilled out.

1. The method of drilling out a mortise and fitting a a tenon-style joint will create a strong joint between the sections.
I think that 10mm dowels will work just as well, if you add more along the length.

2. The tenon used for demonstration was a 10 x 44mm strip of PAR pine. To accommodate for this you will need to use a 10mm wood bit.Although I have marked off the drill bit at 50mm, a depth of 30mm should be more than sufficient.

3. Use the 10mm wood bit to bore out holes along the cutting area to a depth of 30mm. Space the drilling holes as close together as possible without overlapping, as this will cause the drill bit to slip away from the hole.

4. Since the width of the bored hole is only 10mm, using a wood chisel isn't practical. A Dremel MultiTool with small sanding ring works like a dream to clean out the mortise.The reason I modified the depth from 50mm to 30mm is to allow you to reach the bottom of the morise with a Dremel sanding ring.

5. On the 10 x 44mm PAR pine I used a sander to round off the corners. Cut the 10 x 44mm PAR pine to a length of 80mm. This allows for 30mm mounted in the lower and upper planks and 20mm in the gap between.


Step 2: Join the Sections

6. The front seat section consists of two planks joined together as explained above.

7. Both sides sections are joined in the same way. The bottom two slats are screwed onto the back of the front seat sections.

8. On the back section, the slats are screwed into the sides.

9. For mounting seat slats, add 32 x 32mm battens at 20mm below the top of the second slat - on the front, back and sides.

Before attaching the side battens, screw on 32 x 32mm crosspieces and add steel angle braces for additional support.

Step 3: Storage Coffee Table

The storage coffee table is made with side panels made in the same way as the outdoor furniture, but the base has slats that lifts the coffee table off the floor, and a slats on the lid to hold it in place.

Furniture designed by cavello.

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    22 Discussions

    May i ask where you got your pillows and cushions for the furniture?

    2 replies

    Make your own cushions using layers of foam and batting and covering with outdoor fabric. Similar project shown here:

    Do you have a rough estimate in price to build these... Just the wood no cushons

    I think I'll try this for my 1975 Grady White boat. It needs seats so why not make them from pallet wood and make custom cushions. Perfect.and your website has great instructions too. Thanks. Adding to my collection.

    Are the PDF plans more detailed than what is listed here? I'd love to make these, but the info above is very limited.


    2 years ago

    Can this project be made using treated lumber? Is treated lumber a good option?

    1 reply

    No reason why you can't use treated lumber for the project. Will offer added protection if the furniture is left outdoors.


    2 years ago

    Love that style, looks similar to Pallet Furniture models, wanted to ask how did you connect the pieces, it doesn't look like you used nails/screws and you didn't mention that you used a joiner method. Please explain!

    2 replies

    There are various options that you can use for jointing: a Kreg Pockethole Jig is probably the best option for this. If you look at my complete project list you will also find step-by-step instructions for the outdoor sofa that I made.

    Did you glue the planks in or just made them snug enough to stay?

    Very nice result. Maybe you cal also put some oil to protect the wood outdoors

    Would love to build these for my backyard but it looks like #9 is missing some instructions. Would you mind taking a look? Also, is there a materials list? Thanks!

    1 reply

    Hey, just so you know, I found one of my instructables stolen and being sold on listia. When I looked into it, I saw that yours was being sold there as well:

    Thanks ever so much. Lots of work but I love what I do!