Bench Makeover

Bench Makeover

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Hubby started this bench years ago....

bench before

He was planning on making it a bench for a piano we had at our old old house. Well, it just didn't happen. We ended up moving, and the piano was too old and too heavy to move, so it stayed. The new owners were happy to have it. 😊

Would you look at the detail in this rustic wood? It's beautiful! I love all the "insect damage". (Don't worry there's no bugs in it now.)

This wood was given to us by a friend, it was part of a barn. It's chestnut wood and you can't find that around anymore. This wood is not stained... that's its natural beautiful color.

Chestnut wood

Since Hubby had already put together the base, I just had to build the top for it.  It just wasn't quite big enough.  I wanted the top to overhang just a bit. So, I used a 1x1 to frame it out.

Frame for top

I stained the frame and glued it together.  By the way... those corner clamps are awesome!

gluing frame together with corner clamps

Next up, I glued the slats to the edge of the frame.

Gluing boards together

And clamped them down using these awesome clamps! We use those clamps for practically everything we build!

Clamping bench top together

To secure them I also nailed around the complete edge.

Nailing frame together

Bench top finished

Nice! If you look closely, you will see on the plywood our cardboard cut outs for our nativity scene. We cut it out of that plywood. Can you see the outline of Joseph?

In fact, I have the entire project in an Ebook format if you'd like to purchase and make one for your self. Click over to, Build An Outdoor Nativity Scene.

Back to the bench... Now I had to decide about the legs. I went back-and-forth trying to decide whether I wanted them to match, or have a darker stain, or paint them white. I tried the stain, I didn't really like it. And I didn't like the idea of the whole being the same color.

Trying stain on the legs

So white they were. Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures while I painted them, but I think you get the idea. Two coats of primer, 2 coats of  paint. Its pretty easy!

This next part, is one of the most important. I wanted to make sure that this bench could hold any amount of weight. I secured it by placing three 2 x 4's underneath and nailing them in on the sides and from the top. I just used scrap that I had hanging around in the garage.

Strengthening the top

And there you have it! Beautiful new bench. It sits by the back patio door for jackets, purses and extra seating. Its perfect!

DIY Bench Makeover

I really like the contrast of the white and the wood and the detail of the legs shows up nicely.

Paint & Wood contrast on legs

One more look...

New Rustic Bench



  1. This turned out beautiful, Lori. I love it

  2. how tall is it? looks high for bench, or may be im just short. lol

    1. It probably is a little tall... It was supposed to be for a piano... but we are tall people in our house, so it works out just fine :)

  3. Lori This is awesome. What was the previous life of the legs? Great job!


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