Bittersweet Vine Chair
David McCormick of Springfield, Massachusetts found a simple way to create a rustic-looking garden chair out of living bittersweet vines. He says they remind him of something out of a fairy tale cottage in the forest.
You can find these vines growing in woodlands or along roadsides. And since each vine is a different shape and size, each chair is one-of-a-kind.
Material and tools...
- Loppers or pruning saw to cut the vines
- Cordless or electric drill
- Assortment of decking screws (1-inch to 3-1/2-inch)
- 1/4-inch to 2-1/2-inch diameter pieces of bittersweet vines
- Cut two 1-1/2-inch diameter pieces at 48-inches long.
- Cut four -inch diameter pieces in graduating lengths from 15-inches to 18-inches long.
- Cut four 2-1/2-inch diameter pieces at 15-inches long.
- Bending the first 48-inch piece into a bow, lay it down on a flat surface. Holding the bow in position, and starting with the shortest of the 2-inch diameter pieces to the back of the bow, attach each of the four graduation lengths to the bow with 3-inch decking screws. This completes the top of the seat.
- Flip the seat over, so the top is facing down.
- Attach to the outside of the bow, the four 2-1/2-inch, 15-inch long pieces using 3-1/2 inch decking screws. These are the front and rear legs.
- Measuring between the inside of rear legs, cut to size one 2-inch diameter length and attach between the two rear legs using 3-1/2 inch decking screws. This is the bottom rung.
- Bend the second 48-inch long piece into a bow. With the seat still flipped, attach the top of the second bow to the underside of the seat bow using 2-inch decking screws. And attach ends of second bow to inside lower part of rear legs with 2-1/2-inch screws. The seat of the chair is now complete.
- Flip chair back over, so it is standing on four legs.
- Cut 1-1/2-inch diameter at 60-inches long and two 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch diameter at 60-inches long, weaving all three together while bending into a bow shape. Attach to rear of chair at the bottom with screws. This is the back of the chair.
- Using two 3/4-inch diameter length, weave together to make the spine of the chair and attach to the back using 1-1/2-inch screws.
- Cut two 3/4-inch diameter pieces. Bend them into two small bows and attach to the spine and back of the chair using 1-inch screws. This completes the back of chair. (Straight pieces of the same diameter can be used to make a spindle rather than two small bows to complete the back.)
- Cut two 3/4-inch diameter pieces at 15-inches long for the arm rests, and attach to seat and back of chair using 1-1/2-inch screws.
- Trim all excess vines as needed.