Building a Sunroom Planter

Though often considered outdoor pieces, planters can be both functional and beautiful inside the home, especially in an enclosed porch or sunroom.

Sunroom Planter


The first addition to the sunroom in the Season 13 Modern Colonial home was a simple cedar planter. Built by Bob Ryley in the project house’s workshop, the planter’s basic design was given a little extra flair with some resourceful saber saw work.

The first step in constructing the planter was to rip the boards to the proper width on a table saw. Working from rough sketches created earlier, the 1-by-12-inch boards were trimmed down to a width of 10-1/2-inches.

The rough stock for the decorative end pieces were cut to length with a compound miter saw. The plans called for an overall height of 16 inches.

To create the planter’s decorative feet, Ryley created a series of intersecting circles using a simple compass. The front-facing legs displayed a simple S-shaped curve; the end caps used a more intricate pattern.

The decorative patterns for the planter’s feet were cut with a saber saw. Before cutting, the pattern was first scored with a utility knife. The scored line prevented the saber saw blade from tearing the wood along the pattern.

Once cut, the feet’s rough edges were smoothed using a drum sanding attachment on a drill press. Sanding removed the saw’s blade marks and corrected any small deviations from the intended pattern.

Ryley used a biscuit cutter, a specialized tool that routes an oval-shaped notch in the board’s edge, to create a recess for a wooden fastener called a biscuit. A corresponding notch was routed in the adjoining board, and the two pieces were glued and butted together.

The decorative end pieces were fastened with nails. Once the outer frame was assembled, a flat board supported by cleats was dropped into the assembly to form the bottom.

The finished planter was placed under a large picture window. Additional braces had been added to create extra strength where boards were butted together.