When you’ve outgrown your twin bed, take a cue from the blogger at My Repurposed Life by cutting off the headboard and footboard, then using the headboard for the back of the bench, the footboard for the arms, and a repurposed dresser drawer for the seat. Give the piece a coat of paint and a few drawer pulls, then top the seat with a no-sew fabric-covered foam cushion. Surround the versatile bench with creature comforts and homey touches like framed portraits and favorite books to create a pampering porch retreat.
State of Play
The bibliophile behind My Love 2 Create put this bookworm-friendly bench together by laying an old laminate shelf on its side, reinforcing the seat and base with 2x4's and topping the unit with a sleek plywood bench seat. The wide, tall shelves are big enough to accommodate books and comforters alike.
File under “DIY”
Crate Minds Think Alike
Add rustic flair to your patio without breaking the bank with this storage bench from The Kim Six Fix, built for less than $40 with low-cost lumber and thrift-store storage crates. The X-shaped embellishments on the ends of the bench, coupled with the use of lighter wood sealant on the crates and darker stain on the frame, make the bargain-priced bench look like a craftsman-quality showpiece.
Feeling Blue and Lovin’ It
No More Mayhem in the Mudroom
Mudroom in a Minute
Though it consists of little more than a store-bought bench-and-cushion set and a trio of crates to hold paperwork, shoes, accessories—whatever you need!—this semi-homemade sitter from A Night Owl Blog serves as the anchor point of a makeshift mudroom that sits next to the laundry room, right at the entrance to the garage.
Behind Closed Doors
This long expanse is actually two benches screwed together side by side. At the back, the top of each bench was extended with a hinged wooden board that flips up so little hands can drop in boots, keeping all available space easily accessible and efficiently used.
After removing the central doors and right-hand drawers from an oversize vintage dresser, the blogger behind My Repurposed Life retrofitted the empty dresser shell with a wooden bench seat, supports made of scrap wood, and a few storage baskets. With a cushion covered in cheerful, geometric-patterned fabric and a few pillows to match, this sofa-and-end-table unit would be right at home in front of the TV.
Made using narrow eight-foot-long boards and door hinges, this re-creation of West Elm’s Wood Slat Storage Bench is such a convincing replica of the original—-and such a lifesaver for patio party hosts—that you might not believe that blogger Ana White made rather than bought it.
Find inner peace outdoors with this patio storage bench from Jen Woodhouse that features ornamental fretwork on the backrest and a flip-top bench seat (courtesy of a piano hinge) for storing oversize pillows. Potted plants stationed on either side of the bench and a few playful pillows along the seat strike a relaxed, welcoming tableau.
Arrival of the Aztecs
Fresh and Functional
If you’re after a bright and airy ambience in the bedroom, re-create this lightweight storage bench from Why Don’t You Make Me. The piece incorporates a large wooden board as a bench seat and wooden dowels for supports and shelving to elevate the elegance of a soothing sleep space.
The Art of Asymmetry
Featuring a large flip-top seat for shoes and a small drawer for keys and other easily misplaced items, this bespoke red oak plywood bench from Anika’s DIY Life is a great solution for the homeowner with heavy-duty storage needs. This sturdy entryway accent even provides a welcome spot to sit and take a quick breather on the way in or out.
Fun with Foam
When little ones are done playing Picasso in the craft room, cleaning up can be as simple as dropping their paints, crayons, and other art supplies into the baskets lining this L-shaped bench from Simplifying Mom Life. The storage unit consists of two Ikea Kallax benches set corner to corner, with a small custom cube dropped in where they meet. Cushions made from upholstery foam covered with curtain panels are attached to the unit with extra-strength Velcro.
Down on the Farm
A two-tiered bench crafted by the blogger at Cherished Bliss completes this farmhouse-style entryway. The rustic appeal of this stained and shellacked unit, which was designed to house the galvanized metal bins, stems from its mix of materials, its simple frame, and the oversize chalkboard.
There is no such thing as too much storage. Any storage bench you make is a win.
If you have the money to hire a handyman for every household woe, go ahead. But if you want to hang on to your cash and exercise some self-sufficiency, check out these clever products that solve a million and one little problems around the house. Go now!