ADIRONDACK CHAIRS: AN OUTDOOR CHARM

Adirondack chairs are wooden chairs for outdoor use. They are wooden with straight low-slung seats, straight fanned backs, wide armrests and are usually cushion-free. The seat supports extend way back and are also the legs while the wide armrests support the back. They are simple, sturdy and charmingly rustic and putting together a basic one does not usually take the whole day.

Thomas Lee designed the first Adirondack chair while on vacation in the Adirondack Mountains in Westport, New York back in 1903. He needed outdoor chairs for his summer home and the outcome of his early efforts were tested on his family. The final design was first called the “Westport plank chair” but this was given to a carpenter friend in Westport named Harry Bunnell, who at that time was in need of a winter income. Recognizing the potential income of the item to Westport’s summer residents, Bunnell patented the design in 1905 and went on to manufacture the chairs for the next twenty years. The “Westport Plank Chair” was renamed to the “Adirondack Chair” after the Adirondacks, the mountain range where Westport is located.

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Adirondack chairs, for their simple and beefy look are very comfortable. Being wooden, they are commonly used outdoors giving any area a rustic look and feel. They are used in backyard gardens, in front porches by the pool and by the beach. They are lovely in pairs with a table and a huge umbrella. Modern Adirondack chairs now feature a contoured seat and the style has even been modified to adapt to other types of furniture like swing gliders. Some are even colorfully painted and folding. Since they have become very popular outdoor fixtures, beautifully customized designs are readily available anywhere. Since they are easy to build, DIY Adirondack chairs are even sold in craft stores all over and simple plans are easily downloadable online. Rustic, casual simplicity define these chairs and they will remain an outdoor staple for a long period of time.

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