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Reclaimed Wood Furniture: DIY Bench

Updated on May 15, 2014

A DIY bench for a mudroom is a great way to get started creating reclaimed wood furniture.

Old barn wood makes the perfect platform for an entryway bench, which needs to be solid for when your kids jump on it or your dog mistakes the bench legs for a bone.

Because a mudroom bench will see (ab)use, expensive lumber is a no-no. Besides, beat-up lumber has character and is cheap if your DIY wood project doesn't work out as planned.

But that won't happen. You'll succeed. If I can create that barn wood bench in the photo with my Fisher Price tool kit and less than spectacular wood working skills, I'm confident others can, too!

If you need more furniture for your living quarters on the cheap, I also wrote about 5 different techniques to find free furniture.

Old barn wood

A DIY bench is simple to make and cheap, especially if you use a random assortment of recycled wood.

I used one 2x4 of old barn wood that kept getting tossed around in the garage, one 2x6 I bought new, one piece of funky trim and one furring strip, both of which were salvaged wood the previous owner of my home left above the garage rafters. I can't forget that handful of screws and a dab of glue, too.

The beauty of this DIY bench is that you can customize the length and height to your liking, which is what I did with my mudroom bench.

DIY Plans

The 2x4 and the 2x6, which are 36 inches long, form the seat area. The three boards are 12 3/4 inches wide and are glued together.

The general structure looked like this:

The seating area of my mudroom bench used three boards.
The seating area of my mudroom bench used three boards. | Source

Side view of mudroom bench

The legs of this DIY bench are simple.
The legs of this DIY bench are simple. | Source

The trim of this DIY bench

The frontal view shows the wonky trim in this wood furniture.
The frontal view shows the wonky trim in this wood furniture. | Source

The base of this barn wood bench features four legs from a 2x6 that are 19 inches high. (This provides a wicked high seating area for my long legs.) The wooden legs are glued to a wood brace under the bench. The brace, which is cut from a 2x4, supports the legs and bench top. It is not visible because the trim hides it.

The trim, which fits between the legs and hides the 2x4 brace, is 26 inches long on my mudroom bench. I also added some funky trim between the legs because I thought the wooden bench looked a little too plain. That piece is 34 inches.

Rustic Character

When I stained this DIY wood project I used two different colors that I thought would match my entryway.

I also (ahem) beat on the wood with a hammer and scratched a few screwdriver marks in it -- two highly advanced techniques for distressing wood!

The unique, rustic character of this mudroom bench is individual and customizable. This is what makes a DIY bench a worthwhile project.

Besides, if the project doesn't work out, you could always sell the old barn wood bench to somebody looking to buy reclaimed wood furniture ...


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