February 6, 2013

On the Bench

We have this strange little nook in our house (actually we have a lot of strange little nooks in this house since it has been renovated and reconstructed many times since its 1962 construction).  When we moved in, we put up some hooks, hung up some quotes, and called it an entrance.
Like a lot of things here lately, though, our "entrance" is just no longer cutting it for me.  It needs more, and while some of the updates (like a larger/better console, improved lighting, and rug) may have to wait a bit, I knew I could whip up a cute little bench that will hopefully spruce it up a bit in the meantime.
Plans for my bench have actually been in the works since I spotted an old shelf in our shed awhile back.  It was about 7 inches too long for our space, so I just took it up to Home Depot and got my nice friends there to cut it down for me!    Those nice men there also helped me pick out 4 legs (actually I did that part myself and got 14 inch ones) and some t-nuts that would fit (mine were 5/16, but you may want to check with your table leg threading before just going with that).  My only other supplies were picked up at the fabric store where I scored a great deal on some upholstery fabric and picked up a pack of batting.
Making the bench was pretty simple.  I actually covered my shelf in fabric before drilling, but Josh recommended that the drilling be done first, so I'm going to share that process with you first.  Basically, Josh just drilled 4  holes, 1 on each corner (he used a 3/8 drill bit, but again that would depend on your t-nuts).  Then he hammered the nuts in for me. (***Everything seemed good until I went to screw in the legs at the end and had a couple of the nuts come out!  To remedy the problem, I put down some hot glue along the edge of each nut before hammering it in.  This helped, but honestly, my legs are still a bit wobbly, so I'm thinking there may be something better to use out there).

Once the holes are drilled, you can do the fun work of covering the shelf with fabric.  I just used a hot glue gun to accomplish it (have I ever told you how much I love my glue gun!?!).  I started off by putting a ton of it on the shelf...on the side without the drill holes.
I pushed the batting into the hot glue...and voila...my bench was padded.
With the batting in place, I cut my fabric to fit.  Then, I just pulled it tight and adhered it to the back with more hot glue.  When I got to a corner, I just wrapped it like I would a present I was wrapping.  
The final part of my process was spraypainting the wooden legs I had bought at Home Depot.  Once they were dry, I just had to screw each one into the nuts that Josh had already hammered in.  

And once all 4 were in, I had a bench!  

 And added it to my nook making it look a little more complete:

Aside from looking cute, I was hoping the bench would aid in our get-out-the-door routine.  Getting shoes, coats, hats, etc. on two rambunctious boys can be a challenge, so I'm hoping the bench will become our go-to spot for all that (hence the 14-inch legs!).  Fingers crossed, right?

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