Bench Seat from a Table

When we moved our old dining table into the kitchen, we knew we wanted to add some new seating to make it feel more casual and kitchen-like.  We bought a couple new end chairs {which you’ll see in the “after” picture}, but we also wanted to build our own bench seats for the sides.  The feel of benches seemed like a great fit for the style of our kitchen and would allow for more people to fit around the table.  We, of course, wanted to build benches ourselves to save money and put our personal stamp on it {there is just something about making something yourself that makes it so much more special} so we took an old table we had from Mike’s parents {his dad built it over 30 years ago!  Yes, that’s where Mike gets his handiness:)} and decided to repurpose it into two benches.  Here is what the table looked like:


You can see it had some wear and tear on it after 30 years, but was in great shape overall-sturdy and worth reusing.  We started to make our benches by cutting one end off to make it the right length to fit under our table.

Then we ripped it down the middle using the table saw.

And the seats were formed.  A little rough, but they’re there.

Then it was time to sand.  My least favorite job in the world.  I must say, after sanding the concrete counters for more time than I care to speak of, every other sanding job does seem pretty easy.  It was a chilly day, so we bundled up and just opened our garage door slightly.  I wore a mask to avoid getting all that nasty sawdust in my clean lungs:)  Mike sat the two bench seats onto leftover 4x4s from the round table so we could get around all the sides easily.  Pudge kept a creepy lookout under the garage door-wouldn’t want anyone to sneak up on us.

Once the old thick stain was all sanded off, Mike had to fill the gaps in the bottom of the table.  We had two small rectangles in each board from where the top met the legs back in it’s previous life as a table.  Once we removed the legs from the top, two large gaps were left.  He cut two rectangles to size and glued them into place to fill those gaps.  He left them to dry using clamps.  Side note-this is the bottom of the seat.  We didn’t sand it for sanity reasons and you won’t see the rectangular piece once it is flipped over.

Then it was time to re-stain it.  We wanted something that would be similar to the color of the kitchen table legs, so we scoured our stash and ended up using Minwax’s Red Mahogany.  I wore a rubber glove to avoid the dreaded “stained fingernail” look and wiped it on with an old t-shirt.  {This picture is of a chunky leg that will be used on bench #2-we are going with two different styles, so don’t get confused!}

After the stain was dry, Mike attached the legs to the seat.  We used leftover cedar 4x4s from our dining room table as legs.  They worked great on that table and they were free for this one:)

Mike first drilled kreg jig holes on each side of the legs and then drilled the screw into the holes partially before screwing them into the seat.

He pre-drilled the holes into the bench seat to prevent splitting.

Then he screwed the legs into place.

We stained the kreg jig holes to match and you can’t even tell they are there.  And that’s the whole play-by-play.  Here is the finished product, all done and in place:)



Here you can see how similar the color is of the bench and table legs:


The finishing touch will be adding my cushion seat, but I don’t quite have it done yet {hopefully it will be ready to share by the end of the week}.  Our other bench seat is close to completion also and will have a few different steps since it is a different style, so I’ll give you the tutorial on that one as well when it’s done.

So, what do you think?  Would you take a family table and chop it up?  Anyone else have bench seats in their kitchen?




These are the fabulous blog parties I link up to each week:

DIY Showoff: DIY Project Parade

I Heart Naptime: Sundae Scoop

Skip to My Lou: Made By You Mondays

Today’s Creative Blog: Get Your Craft On

Tip Junkie: Tip Me Tuesday

Home Stories A to Z: Tutorials and Tips Tuesdays

Not Just a Housewife: Shoe Me What Ya Got

Blue Cricket Design: Show and Tell

Hooking Up with Hepworths

Shabby Chic Cottage: Transformation Thursday

Miss Mustard Seed: Furniture Feature Friday

CSI Project: Challenge

5 Days, 5 Ways

Remodelaholic: Blog Link Up

30 Handmade Days

Serenity Now

Tatertots and Jello: Weekend Wrap-Up

Beneath My Heart


  1. Hey Jessie! Rally neat that you were able to re-purpose an old family table! Also, where did you get your kitchen rug? Ikea?

    • Thanks, Kelly! And, yes, the rug is from Ikea. It was an off-white color and I added the stripes to it. I’ll be sharing the details on it next week!

  2. Angela Jones says:

    Love the bench seat! Looks like it will last another 30 years! Can’t wait to see the cushion seat to go on it!!

  3. Looks great! I love the bench seat! Very rustic chic!

  4. You guys did a grat Job, I love the bench! And of course I love pudge in the pictures!Just wondering where you got the end chairs after all!

    • Hi Susan! Thanks! We ended up getting the chairs from American Wholesale Furniture on the east side of Indy. Mike is able to get a discount through them so we got a great deal:)

  5. Love the bench! Way to go!

  6. It looks fantastic! I love having benches at the tables – they are perfect for kids!

  7. Great project – love that you were able to re-use the table in such an awesome way.

  8. I love so much that you reused a table to make such a great bench! I so need to do something like this one day, so thank you for the inspiration! This project would be perfect for our linky party featuring “Transformations” called Repurpose-Remodel-Reveal, I know our readers would love to see it too! (It starts tomorrow- Friday, March 16th 2012 at 7:00 am and reoccures every 1st and 3rd Friday)

    -Whitney @ TheRoosterAndTheHen

  9. this blog rocks.


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