Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Gorgeous Garden Bench under $125

A few months ago, while beginning the re-organization in the basement my husband took apart one of three workbenches left behind by the previous owners of our home. Each bench was about 68 inches long by about 30 inches deep.

This isn't the one we took apart, it's one of the two left behind, but I wanted to give you and idea of what it looked like.

After removing the "table top" portion of the workbench, my husband called me down to the basement. He had a vision of us turning it into a real bench that we could put in our garden.

You should have seen us trying to negotiate that thing up the stairs and through the kitchen to get out the back door. I was literally stuck in the stairwell for awhile while DH moved furniture around in the kitchen to make room for this monster to get outside!

Once outside, this is what we started with.

First, we (mostly DH, aka "Demo Man") removed the awesome dark wood paneling back. I'm pretty sure the back was left over from the original walls in my craft room. Next, we removed the extra support beams on the top and sides that once held up the massive table top. I then started sanding and sanding and sanding, until both hands we numb from the sander.

I then got to break out our circular saw, and cut down the front "table legs" to make armrests. We also added small pieces to be supports to hold the back of the arm rests in place.

The back piece was a left over section of pressure treated plywood that we had left over from the wood for our floor kit to our shed.

Already looking cute, right?

Then the bench got a good thick coat of indoor/outdoor primer.

And a few coats of outdoor stain.

Up until this point... we didn't spend a PENNY on this project! Everything we used including paint and stain, we already had. {YEA!!}

Next, I coated the bench in a few coats of clear gloss spray paint, and made cushions.

I measured the seat of the bench and it came to 26 inches by 66 inches. I picked up a two inch thick high density foam cut to exactly 66 inches (by 24 inches wide) at The Fabric Mill for $5.50 a foot ($30.25 total). The back pillow forms came from IKEA at $6.99 a piece for Euro Sham sized 26"x26" ($20.97 total). I then purchased two different outdoor fabrics from Joanns, (on sale for 50%) off, for around $50. Add in cording for piping at $.15 a yard ($3.00 total for 20 yards) and zipper by the yard at $3.00 a yard ($11.25 total for just under 4 yards). My total out of pocket cost came to under $125.00!!!

I used this tutorial as a guide to follow while making the box pillow cushion bottom and for cutting the bias binding for the cording. It's a great tutorial and really explains all of the steps well.

And, for those of you that have been following other "before and afters" here are a few pictures of what the area of our yard looked like when we first purchased our home.

Do you remember the awesome horse statue my husband cleaned up? Do you spot her in the garden now?

Now, to be able to take a break from my busy summer flying schedule and sewing for my ETSY shop and sit on her and enjoy a lazy afternoon with a book and cup of tea. {Iced Tea of course in the heat of this Long Island summer!}

Linking up to the following parties:
The Girl CreativeThe DIY Show OffMake it Yours @ My Backyard Edengiveaways
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  1. aww, great creativity! I like your bench! It looks great.
    ps thanks for having word verification off!
    ohh, it is on. uneste

  2. I love a project that started out as something totally differnt and then with a little vision and lots of elbow grease turns into something totally unexpected and beautiful! Awesome job :)

    ~ Emily N. from "too Blessed to Stress"

  3. How creative of you guys! Looks really good :)

  4. Oh this is so great! I love it that you could see past that old work bench...a diamond in the rough!
    Glad you came by La Bella Via to see our little bench...you have a great blog, think I'll start following it:)

  5. Great redo! What color outdoor stain did you use? I really like it. And it looks great with your fabric choices for the seat and pillows. Awesome!! Rebecca

  6. Thanks so much everyone!
    Rebecca - the stain was from Lowes, it's an Olympic (Wood Proteector) Deck, Fence, & Siding Stain. We used Base 2 (Solid Color - in Autumn Brown)
    I love it! We bought it in 2008 for a few planters and a really old picnic table that had been left behind... and it still is holding up great!

  7. Wow! i am jealous! What a great re-do. Thanks so much for linking this to Sister Sister Sunday. Come back and visit us again this week!

  8. What a transformation. I love that you did it all for no cost (apart from the cushions) - just some ingenuity and sweat equity. Now you can sit and enjoy it.

  9. Oh, I just LOVE those pillows and cushion you made for your bench!! That fabric is beautiful!!

  10. Thanks for the share!!
    Your cushions for garden bench look so elegant and the chairs are also looks great.