Stout & Stylish Garden Arbor

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Elegant design and rock-solid router-cut joinery combine to make this outdoor structure the envy of the neighborhood.

When spring blooms, many woodworkers turn their attention from the shop to the garden. This arbor—plus its matching gate on page 30—takes dead aim at both passions. Handsome but without excess adornment, this Arts and Crafts-inspired project provides an inviting entrance to a thoughtfully landscaped backyard or patio area. And with any of three complementary fence ideas on page 35. you can enclose a garden or contain Fido’s urge to romp and roam.

As a woodworking project, the arbor will teach you how to use your router with a few simple jigs to cut precise mortises and perfectly-shaped curves. Another surprising detail about this project is the shop-friendly subassemblies. Despite its impressive size, this arbor is designed so that you can build the parts when there’s still snow on the ground and quickly install it outside as soon as the weather allows.

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