Cool Chairs of Florida
Jim Kane - Owner - Designer - Builder
Best Southern Bars
Introducing the Four Bar Models
The "Big Easy," the "Big Dog", the "Cajun" and the "Bayou"
These designs could be redone to make a unique TV table, entertainment center, buffet table, sofa table, bookshelf, desk, kitchen island, etc. to fit a specific space of your home.
This page includes some of my newest designs for 2012. Use these bar designs as ideas as most customers have a little tweak here and there to make their bar a special piece of furniture whether it is in the backyard or on the porch or deck. I know several customers have their new furniture I built for them inside their home such as in the "Florida room".
As a side note, one of the reasons I saw a need for this type of good looking outdoor bar, buffet table, whatever was after looking at some of my customers back decks and backyards. I saw some "interesting" bars and other tables that were made from left-over deck materials and were put together with a nail gun. The finished products looked like "boat docks".
Even many of the expensive outdoor stainless steel type cabinets I have seen had a lot of rust in less than two years (because the stainless steel was #304 grade - it contained steel in the finished product). Not all stainless steel prevents rust especially in salt-air areas where I live. The best stainless steel for outside is #316 marine grade and that is very expensive, too expensive for large cabinets or a grill. Another money saving reason why good exterior wood furniture with a great oil-based stain is the way to go. You can always just touch it up with a quick new coat of oil based stain and the best part ... no sanding.
This piece can quickly become your favorite gathering spot. Use as a bar one time and then a buffet table the next time. It's great for organizing your party, grill area, outdoor kitchen or garden. Since some of these pieces use recycled materials, some of these pictures may be listed in the Go Green Collection too.
Rustic, Unique and Cool ..... I knew I needed a name (Best Southern Bars) to help you find what you didn't know you needed and here you are --- no designated driver needed here - this is for your backyard. Together we can combine our imaginations to design and build something really special. When you looked in a magazine (or on Pinterest) and saw a dream backyard, I can help you get there. This is it - now is the time. Every week I get phone calls and E-mails about projects. You can E-mail me photos of your backyard or porch and even photos of furniture from magazines to firstname.lastname@example.org as attachments.
I have more plans and ideas for the front of these one-of-a-kind bars. The list includes using lots of vintage yardsticks, steampunk hardware, multiple chevron diagonals, barnwood, rustic/vintage fireplace surrounds, shipping/forklift pallets and different bar counter tops including Brazilian Ipe and thick mantles with custom corbels. I can add / design bar fronts that include ... hurricane shutters, car parts, horseshoes, surfboards, waterskis, vintage pick-up truck tailgates and the list goes on.
("Sport" themes and "work" themes are in the works right now) ..... This includes baseball bats (cut in half - this is not easy to do!) being placed on the front of the bars. I can add a home plate, diamond infield or baseball/softball. See beginning picture below. I also have plans for an old wood ladder on the front (for a foot rest), several hooks and even a fireman shield for my Fireman's "Hook & Ladder" design. Still trying to find the right ladders and hooks. No pictures yet. Trying to come up with football themes for these bars design also.
("Back to the Future") Designs Coming ..... Also trying to reuse recycled items like iron sewing machine bases, retro pieces, dressers & other tables for smaller bars or TV stands. I get a lot of ideas from Pinterest and going into local antique stores and thrift stores. What are your ideas?
The "Big Easy" with Pecky Cedar fronts and sides
The "Big Dog" Models
Featuring Pecky Cedar, Pecky Cypress & Flow-Thru Shelving
The front sides can designed to include rusty roofing tin, license plates, old doors, windows & shutters. Most of the designs could also be used for bed head boards, kitchen islands, entertainment centers and TV tables. These bars are quite heavy which is why there are built in handles on the sides. They also add to the look!
Front of a new bar design for 2012 - Features "Pecky Cedar" in a "Double Diagonal" design. 42" H x 72" L
A visit just today by a customer in my showroom asked if I could make this into a bed headboard. I answered sure with a few changes in the dimensions - and add a matching foot board. Stained or left natural this could be a really unique bed. But remember I wanted to design a bar in the first place. The depth of the bar could be up to you.
Pecky cedar (and pecky cypress) comes with different degrees of pecky - some boards are more aggressive meaning there are lot of cut-outs that are wide, deep or all over the boards. A lower degree of pecky would be where there are less cut-outs. I think you can see both of these examples on the above picture.
I used washers for spacers between the boards to give it a better look rather than butting the boards together. This side is lightly sanded so you can still see the saw blade marks - but it leaves it a little rough to the touch - no splinters though. All the edges and corners have been routered and sanded for safety. The other side I planed down to a even flat surface as an optional front face. I dug out all the holes and tunnels left by the fungus so it would stain better. You can smell the cedar but it still is not overwhelming.
I now have 5 stain samples using Sikkens oil based Cetol 1 (3 coats) & one sample using Sikkens oil based SRD (1 coat). They include ... Cape Cod Gray (SRD), Mahogany, Dark Oak, Teak, Butternut and Cedar. Because cedar is already red, the colors vary when you stain cedar vs. staining cypress even when you use the same stains. I have made samples of both in my shop and plan to upload those soon.
Posted on July 24, 2012
Another "Big Dog" Model Rustic Bar - double diagonal front face. Dimensions are L .. 60", H .. 42", D .. 36"
This is the same bar above only now it's a bar ready to be stained. Made from pecky cedar, cedar and #1 grade deck boards (for frame & strength). Bottom shelf and main shelf are made from heavy duty plastic "Thru-Flow" dock material. Custom front cedar foot rail.
There has been so much interest on this model that I've already started two bars similar to this one. Move it indoors for a really classic bar. Long brace on each side of the bar are for moving bar without having to use the top. This bar is heavy. Add a custom dolly for more location options.
Top and bottom shelving from dock material
Top Shelf of the bar showing "Thru-Flo" material.
This allows for water and spillage to go right thru the bar as the bottom shelf is made from the same material. Just add a piece of smaller granite that you can move around if you need a cutting surface that is a solid surface on either shelf. This material comes in three colors ... white, gray or maple (shown - light tan). This material comes in 3', 4' and 5' sections and are 12" wide.
Vertical Front Design
large rustic bar similar to the ones above
Pecky Cedar (combined with cypress) is show with vertical front design. Dimensions: L .. 60", H .. 42", D .. 36" This is still in the building phase. Front foot rest will be similar to other bar pictures. I am considering two cross-braces to make this look like a barn door (see next picture). Also adding corbels (to be designed) to help support the bar top. See top bar picture for potential similar shape for corbels.
The "Cajun" Models - same size as the "Big Dog" Models
only they feature weathered, rusty or even new galvanized metal fronts and sides / wrapped in pecky cedar or other recycled wood.
Front bar face with galvanized metal
Front face has pecky cedar surrounding metal panels. Added decorative 4 x 4 full porch posts give this bar front a great look. Still under design, this bar may (or will) have a matching center porch post, front foot rail and matching side panels made from more galvanized metal. This look does not have any rust (yet) as the bars shown below. Just depends what kind of look you are trying to achieve. You may even have some old sheets of metal or other material that I can add to your bar for a personal ownership.
Old Weathered Rusty Roofing Metal Bar Front
I finally was able to obtain some "rare to find" rusty metal for this bar front. With all the recycling metal hunters out there, most of this is very difficult to find. Many thanks to Craigslist. This picture shows just the front side so I don't have to build a whole bar for you to see the design. Any original shine from new galvanized metal is weathered & long gone. I consider this "light rust."
Could be a great looking TV table!
Shows the full front face with two possible half 4 x 4 decorative porch posts and smaller center full post. I would probably make the center smaller post be the same size as the side half posts. Just another idea to consider. The burlap bags shown in the upper corners are actual coffee bean burlap bags from both Costa Rica and Brazil. I'm going to frame them in the near future to add more texture, color and character to my shop.
Cut-out tin letters form "EAT"
These rusty letters could be attached on a bar front (or another piece of galvanized metal as shown and framed out with wood). The example above is considered heavy rust. Short words work best on a bar, on a wall or on a hanging framed wood item .. words could include BAR, LOVE, BEACH, SURF, your favorite sports team, family name or other theme for your bar or wall-hanging.
New bar front and/or side designs could contain theme signs (that you provide or I provide) ... This could include license plates, tin signs, wood signs, hand painted signs, beverage signs and so on. You could provide signs or items that you already own and want to put on the bar front or sides. You could include lighted neon signs (Harley-Davidson sign middle right).
Some themes ideas: NFL or college team, Harley Davidson, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, A & W Root Beer, favorite beer, the beach and surfing, hot rods, police, fire department, military, gas stations & garages, Route 66, etc. Add a wall mounted bottle opener with a similar logo as above products/themes.
The prices of some of these signs/license plates/neon lights and other signage can range from $15-20 each to a lot more after you pay for shipping. I can direct you to websites if you need help here.
The "Bayou" Models with Pecky Cypress fronts and sides
Posted on February 21, 2012
First picture of the front side of new "Bayou" model bar (model #3).
The main frame is made from pressure treated 5/4" deck boards &
2 x 4 cypress for strength. The sides, front & trim boards are made
from pecky cypress. More pictures to follow.
These double diagonals are going to stand out more when stained.
I just finished staining this bar first coat (of three coats) of Mahogany. Everyone who comes into my showroom says this one is already their favorite. I want to make this one say "WOW, Holy Batman". Just imagine the top made from copper! I estimate this will add about $200 to the price but it will be worth it when you see it. This finished top will be about 50" x 30".
I made the top using thick, rough cut Pecky Cedar. I am waiting until the top is completely plugged before I start to sand the top (slowly and lightly). Plugs for the top will also me made from scraps of the same cedar boards. I want to leave as much lumber yard saw blade circular marks as possible. The top will be stained a different color than the Mahogany - my first two-color design. RUSTIC but COOL! SEE PICTURES BELOW FOR FINISHED BAR!!! This get rave reviews!
Model #4 may have a recycled metal front and copper top - yoooww! This could be really cool and a great addition to anyone's outdoor furniture set. I'm now a frequent visitor at the two local metal recycling centers in town. No one has seen the bar #4 model yet - coming this Fall. Lots of recycled metal and multiple/different levels - another creative design.
NEW: Bar #5 may be made from BLACK SINKER CYPRESS. Can't wait to start! Pictures of Sinker Cypress to be loaded.
One-Of-A-Kind Bar Designs
These designs can also be used as TV tables,
buffet tables, potting tables, front entrance tables or porch tables
This vintage bar is made from a
Singer Sewing Machine Base and a Red Radio Flyer Wagon.
Party Time !
One-of-a-kind bar / table with top shelf and matching bench.
Includes multiple birdhouse cutouts and picket fence.