diy: a barn wood bench

anyone that knows me at least a little bit knows that i'm 1. broke as hell and 2. pretty crafty. more broke than crafty, granted, but it always tends to work to my advantage. i've been seeing these old wood benches popping up all over the internet and thought they would look great in my little pile of bricks. but after checking out the prices of one, i gave a quick "are you kidding me?" nervous laugh and then cried into my cereal bowl realizing they were totally out of my financial league. but! there's always a way to DIY and SO here's my quick tutorial on how to build your own for about $40! it was cheap and easy and took maybe 10 minutes. isn't she cute? her name is beni and she's way more sturdy than she looks. bronson and i both sat on her at the same time and she didn't even cry a little bit. and that's roughly 200 pounds. (i won't be breaking down that math for anyone, thanks!) 

All you'll need is: 
WOOD! i personally took a nice country drive and found an old barn along the side of the road. i stopped and pulled in because the beautiful thing about farm houses is there's usually a person running around working outside all the time and hey! there he was! the owner was the sweetest little old man that called me "darlin" and i literally just asked him if i could have a piece that i saw in a pile on the side of the barn. that's another great thing about farms. there's always wood laying around! he gave it to me for free and was happy to "get it out of his way" …i love when that happens. people helping people in the country and not being murdered in the process.  it was about 9 feet long. so i took her to my local hardware store and had them cut her in half so my bench is about 4 1/2 feet long. granted, he didn't do the best cutting job so one piece is longer by about 2 inches, but that's ok. i like things in my life to be a little crooked anyway. 

-4 metal hairpin legs. (they come in all lengths and mine are 16 inches tall) 

-28 wood screws (i know nothing about good screws…no pun intended…but since i knew my bench was going to mainly be a home for more plants and wouldn't really be supporting humans very much, i figured i didn't need to invest in super strong heavy duty screws. i'll report back if my bench falls apart)

-A drill (basically the kitchen aid mixer of the wood working world) you could probably use a screw driver but i'm too lazy, ya see
this is one of those tutorials that's almost too easy to even care to write about but whatever. 
so just know, i never measure anything and i eye ball everything. that would probably drive most people insane but it's always worked for me. so here's what i did!

pick the sides of your wood that you think are the "better sides", the ones you want to be seen, and put them facing the ground.

since i had two pieces of wood side by side, i used the brackets to screw them together. i screwed them along the middle of the bench in between the hair pin legs since i figured that's where most of the weight would be sitting (science) 

--there's a few gaps here and there between the two pieces, but that's kind of the point. my wood pieces are super old and have character and this isn't a project that's meant to be perfect--

now screw in the legs as far out or in as you want. i screwed mine in about 5 inches from each end and i think they look perfect. but that's just me. 

now for the fun part- flip that baby over! if she stands up on her own, you did a great job!
here's a few pics of my finished bench that i'm pretty proud of. hope this inspires someone to make their own as well!  
bronson helped, obviously.
see how one piece is longer? oh well. she's still cute. 



  1. SO great! I've been seeing DIYs with hairpin legs lately and am loving them - now I most definitely want to give it a try.


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