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Morris Chair fixedI’ve built a fair number of furniture projects over the years, and it’s not really fair to try and say, “this is my favorite,” but I will say there are projects that continue to give me more satisfaction than others. When I sit in my outdoor Morris chair, set a drink on my “Stickley” side table and watch the birds testing out the feeder in the yard, it’s a very satisfying moment. Nature is a nice part of that moment, but the satisfaction comes from knowing that the outdoor projects I’ve built are decent, attractive and most often inexpensive and quick.

In general, outdoor projects are built with wood from the home center store – which manages to cut out all the time necessary for wood preparation. Then you take out more time – that spent on traditional joinery – and you’re well on your way to an afternoon or weekend project that can get put to use right away.

One of the hardest things to accept in your mind may be that your woodworking skills aren’t being properly utilized by building outdoor projects. Get over it! While your friends, neighbors and relatives will certainly be able to appreciate your Chippendale highboy, I’ll bet you’ll find they’d just as soon sit on the swing in the back yard. Satisfaction comes in many forms so don’t think less of the satisfaction more easily gained.

If you’re digging for projects to get that easy satisfaction, let me recommend a smorgasbord of options at a really decent price. The “Outdoor Projects Value Pack” has more than 150 outdoor projects (including the video on building the “Outdoor Morris Chair”) that will let you customize your outdoor space for ultimate satisfaction.

– David Thiel

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