DIY Urban Outfitters Inspired Wooden Dowel + Leather Chair

Hellooooooo!! Guys. Good news. We survived the move! Its a little overwhelming to move, travel, celebrate 2 birthdays and stay on top of life. Do you know what sounds so great right now? Just being whelmed. Not overwhelmed, not underwhelmed, just whelmed.

Are you ready to start checking off all of the projects from Aspyn’s house?

My favorite project is the Wooden Dowel chairs. I hunted for months trying to find the perfect pair of chairs that were a little boho, and a lot awesome and just came up short over and over. It was MADDENING! Then I found these chairs at Urban Outfitters. Um. Hello perfection. Also, totally DIYable.(<—-has anyone trademarked that? cause I got dibs!)


Looking at the picture its so plainly a handful of dowels that I had to try it. Also I’ve been wanting to buy a drill press and this was the perfect project. (This is the one I got BTW)

To make this project you’ll need:

(2) 1 1/4″ wooden dowels cut to 24″
*these are the front vertical pieces
(2) 1 1/4″ wooden dowels cut to 30 1/2″
*these are the back vertical pieces
(2) 1 1/4″ wooden dowels cut to 23 1/2″
*these are the seat cross pieces
(4) 2″ wooden dowels cut to 24″ 
*these will be the arms and seat pieces
(1) 2″ wooden dowel cut to 26 1/2″
*this is the top piece
(1) 3/4″ wooden dowel cut to 24″
*this is the back leg cross piece

Rope (you’ll need about 40′ per chair)
1/4″ Rope Clamp Set

Drill Press
1 1/4″ Forstner Drill Bit
3/4″ Forstner Drill Bit
Wood Glue

The most important thing that you can do to ensure that your project is done right is to build a jig to hold your dowels, that way they won’t rotate and misalign your holes. Now if we’re really being honest, I’m sure that there is a perfectly simple and correct way to create a jig for something like this. I just have no idea what that is. So this is what we came up with.

I spaced 2 pieces of scrap wood out on a larger piece so that the dowel fit snug inside them. Then I marked where the dead center was between the 2 boards. That way I could center the laser on the mark and after it was centered, add the dowel. Because the laser was already centered, I knew that we were drilling into the right spot on the dowel.

Drilling the holes is the hardest part, so in an effort to make it as absolutely easy as possible, I’ve got a few diagrams with measurements for your cute face.

The seat piece is the most complicated of the bunch because you have to rotate the dowel 1/4 turn to drill the second set of holes. The easiest way we found to do this (and keep it accurate) is to drill the holes that go all the way through and then put a dowel in one side (it doesn’t have to be a big one, just something that you can put a level on) rotate the dowel 1/4 turn and use a small level to make sure that its even. Then drill the second set of holes.

Once you’ve got everything assembled to this point you’re just going to connect the cross pieces. Just a heads up, depending on how accurately you drilled the 1/2 holes your measurements may vary just a little. I recommend cutting the cross pieces at 23.5″ and assembling. See if your chair is square, if its not you might need to trim your cross pieces down a little.

If you’re having a hard time getting your dowels into the holes, tape a piece of sandpaper on the end of a drill bit and ream the hole a little to smooth the edges and make it a little bit bigger.

A rubber mallet is kind of your best friend for getting everything lined up without damaging the wood. One you’ve dry fit everything and its looking fab, put wood glue in the joints, and place a few screws in the underside of the joints to secure everything in place.

You’ve got a few options when it comes to creating something that you can actually sit on. The chair from Urban used leather straps but I wanted to change things up a little so I used rope.

I started in the bottom left corner and wrapped it along the seat, then moved on to the back. I ended the rope back where I started and used a few rope clamps to secure it.

It is surprisingly comfortable just with the rope if you’re loving that Aussie/nautical look.

To make the cushions I found a fantastically worn leather couch on Craigslist and skinned it. I used this tutorial for a hidden zipper pillow.

If you make this project I want to see! I’m itching to make a 2 seater bench, wouldn’t that be the cutest?!

The post DIY Urban Outfitters Inspired Wooden Dowel + Leather Chair appeared first on Vintage Revivals.

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Author: Jeff Donaldsons

Good day everyone, I'm a family man who loves hanging out with friends & meeting new people. Family Friends and Coding Yeah!. I also love helping others.