Hello there friends!
It’s been a while since I’ve built something! I’m back to my teaching job and I’m having wood withdrawals 🙂 I am so excited to show you my cute coffee table/bench I built over labor day! I wanted to build something to donate to a local school fundraising auction and here it is! Isn’t it cute???? I really wanted to keep it once it was done. But, I didn’t 🙂
What I love about this piece is that you can use it as a small coffee table if you don’t have a lot of space (like in my family room!) or you can tuck in a corner, in an entry way, or even at the foot of your bed as a beautiful bench! So many options!
This bench is 4′ long, 12″ deep, 18″ tall. You can find my inspiration here. I built it a little smaller than the plans, which seems to be a trend with everything I build. I think everyone else’s homes are bigger than mine!
I already had the tools listed here, so I was able to build this for about $20 in wood and some paint!
- 1- 2 x12 x6′ white wood board- cut at 48″
- 1- 2 x10 x8’white wood board- cut one 37″ piece and two 15″ pieces for the legs
- 2- 2 x 4x 6′ white wood board- cut two 37″ pieces and cut two 11 1/4″ pieces beveled at 45 degrees for the feet
- Wood glue
- 2 1/2″ pocket screws
- Kreg Jig (to drill pocket holes)
- Finish of choice (I used wood stain in walnut color followed by white chalk paint and a coat of polyurethane)
- Sander or sand paper
- Nail gun with 2″ brad nails
- Miter Saw
IMPORTANT: I made all of my cuts first, then I drilled the pocket holes, then I put the pieces together. This bench is assembled upside down. I used wood glue on all of the seams. I attached the pieces in the order below. I will go over the cuts in order.
Cut 1 are the legs, the 2 x10 cut in two 15″ pieces. I used a triangle to trace the detail and used a jigsaw to cut in that part. Make sure you are careful and cut slow. You can get creative on the design!
Once I cut the first leg, I used it to trace the second to make sure they were exactly the same
Once I finished cutting both legs I sanded the rough edges in the areas I cut out
I then drilled pocket holes using a kreg jig
Cut 2 (below) are the two 2x4s cut at 37″. You will drill pocket holes on these and attach them to the seat using 2 1/2″pocket screws. Notice how many pocket holes there are and be sure they face in the direction the arrows point.
This is where I got a little too excited and forgot to take pics of all the steps. Remember your entire bench is assembled while upside down (as shown above).
Cut 3. You are now ready to attach the seat made from a 2 x12 cut at 48″. Attach this piece by using wood glue at the seam and drilling 2 1/2″ pocket screws into all of those pocket holes you drilled.
Cut 4. Once the seat is attached you are ready to attach the stretcher. This is the 2 x 10 cut at 37″. Make sure you drill the pocket holes first and attach it to the seat with wood glue at the seam and 2 1/2″ pocket screws.
Cut 5. Now you are ready to cut the pieces for the feet. These are two 2x4s cut at 11 1/4″ and beveled at 45 degrees. This is the trickiest cut. I recommend you practice on a scrap piece if you are a newbie like me :). I got mine right the second time 🙂
I suggest you cut one side then use one of the legs to mark the other side. That way you have a more precise measurement.
To attach the feet use wood glue and 2″ brad nails from the bottom and into the legs. Remember your bench should still be upside down. Be careful and make sure you aim well so your nails go into the legs. At this point you can turn your bench right side up 🙂
Once it was all assembled I stained it using a dark walnut stain. I used a rag to do it. Once the stain sat for 5 minutes I used a clean rag and wiped the whole thing down.
Here it is all stained! Looking good!
After the stain was all dry (I let it dry overnight) I brushed white chalk paint over the entire bench. Here is a picture of the paint I used. I bought it at Michaels crafts. Any brand would work. Just remember I am talking about chalk paint, not to be confused with chalkboard paint.
This stuff dries super fast! I love the matte finish it gives. You can apply a second coat right after you are finished with the first. I used a regular paint brush. After it was all dry from both coats I went ham with my cat sander. I started sanding the edges then I did random areas until I liked what I saw. There is no right or wrong way here. That is the beauty of distressing!
I finished by giving the entire bench a coat of polyurethane. This is a clear coating that makes the finish a little softer to the touch and protects the wood.
Then when it was dry, I noticed it was kind of noisy moving it around on my tile floor, so I glued some felt to the bottom of the feet. This is especially good to keep hardwood floors from getting scratched.
And that’s it!! I was sad to give this away but it was for a good cause 🙂 I might have to build another one for me! Here’s a few pics of the finished piece.
Thanks for stopping by! If you decide to give this a try I would love to see a picture! So, share it, pin it, tweet it and when you have time, build it! 🙂