Liza Greis

Do-it-yourself projects and Home Decor

Outdoor Movie Theater Seats

Now that it is warming up, I am dreaming of having outdoor movies again. I’m resharing this past project with you today because these outdoor movie theater seats are one of my favorites! As kids we used to run an extension cord outside and take a small TV/VCR combo outside to watch movies in the backyard. I thought now that I am an adult and have a house of my own, that I could do a little better than that. So we got a projector screen to go with the projector we got a few years ago. All I needed now was some seating. These DIY Outdoor Movie Theater Seats are easy to make and comfortable to sit on!


diy backyard theater seats


Since I was making four ( and I love them so much I might make even more!) I wanted them to be as simple as possible but still provide comfy seating.


backyard theater


Outdoor Movie Theater Seats Tutorial

Like I said before, I wanted these to be as simple as possible in case I ended up making a ton of them.

1. I cut plywood that I had on hand into 24 inch by 18 inch pieces. The cushions were about 17 inches wide so that is why I made them a tiny bit bigger.  For every seat you want, cut two boards.

2. Then I primed them with a tinted primer I had on hand. White primer would be fine as well. I primed them because plywood is SO porous and soaks up a lot of paint. I didn’t want to go through a million cans of spray paint.

3. I used hinges to attach the two boards together. I used two hinges per seat. Thicker plywood is best for this project for the fact that the screws will go all the way through the board if it is too thin.

4. I had some 1×2 that I cut to fit on the inside of the boards. I cut two pieces per seat. I screwed them onto the inside of the bottom. I then screwed a 5 inch screw all the way through the 1×2 piece. These get pushed into the ground to make sure the seat doesn’t move when you lean back on it. There were four (one on each bottom corner) per seat. Then I painted the 1×2 piece as well.


how to make outdoor theater seats


We went super casual and added a crate as our “side table” and mason jars for the drinks.




Outdoor movies aren’t just for kids! Why not have a girls night?


movie night backyard_edited-1


Because of the hinge, you can adjust these outdoor movie theater seats to any height you want. You can sit up or make it open more so you are laying down more.


backyard movie seats


Does your family ever have outdoor movies? Have you ever thought to do it as a couple’s night? Or a girl’s night? I would love to hear your stories!



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    • Liza says

      I did a review of a 3M projector a couple years ago and we love it. It is small and connects to Apple products. It was available exclusivly at Target. I am not sure if that is still the case.

  1. Debbie says

    What a great idea!!! My family and I watch movies outside using a projector and a shower curtain hung on the fence. I never thought of using a screen. Hmmm…. We usually sit in chaise lounge chairs or float in the pool.

  2. Barbara says

    OMG I love this!! I never thought of outdoor movies for adults!!! What a great idea, and I adore the chairs Liza! Headed to Insta to enter your giveaway! Thanks!

  3. Emily says

    those are perfect!!! We do outdoor theater showings every summer… this is the perfect idea for adults who don’t want to lay down like the kids. Pinned!!

  4. Randi Sowders says

    Oh this is soooo fun! I have been looking everywhere to get a good deal on a projector because I want to set up an outdoor movie theater for us too for this summer. So far, no dice…But when I do find one, I am making these chairs too! Thanks for sharing!

  5. Kari says

    I love this idea! Too bad we have so many mosquitoes outdoors! My favorite summer memory is going to sleepaway summer camp! I wish I could still go, but at least now my son attends!

  6. Maria Lanteigne says

    We also do backyard movies. I found a very inexpensive little projector for $100.00 on ebay. I have an old pull down screen from a school yard sale. We put put our plastic Adirondack chairs, make a fire in the fire pit and use coolers to put our feet up. My family loves doing this. We call it our walk-in (instead of drive-in). I love your idea for seats and I may try to make a couple this summer.

  7. Libby says

    I, too, love this idea and would LOVE to know where you found your bench cushions. :)
    Thank you SO much!

  8. leanna says

    Loving the idea of having a chick flick night with these great outdoor seats.
    They would also be really handy for any outdoor park venue, and much prettier than a horrible web chair.

    Great post and project.

  9. Sam -Raggedy Bits says

    What a fabulous idea!! What a fun way to spend a family night!! Bet you and your family enjoy movie night now!

    Thank you so much for sharing your fun project with us over at Waste Not Wednesday!

  10. Emily says

    These are so cool! I love this idea for movie watching all summer long :) Thanks for sharing at Merry Monday! I’ll be featuring your DIY outdoor seating this week. We’d love to have you link up again!

  11. Lisa W says

    You are brilliant and awesome 👏🏻 😎!! I used your idea for the movie seats with a couple of upgrades. I added 2 eyelet hooks at the top on each side and two at the bottom to tie on the lounge cushions I bought and then added a carry handle on the reverse side of the cushion. #SUPERCUTE #MOVIENIGHT

  12. Christy says

    Since it is difficult for my dad to go very far and/or gets anxious when out and about, the Backyard Movie is a perfect solution for my family.


  1. […] backyard theater seats for family movie night outdoors with Liza’s step by step at Not Just a […]

  2. […] (Credit: Not Just a Housewife) […]

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