Thank you to Elmer’s for helping us complete our DIY mudroom bench. All opinions and plans are my own.
Ever since we moved into our house (over a year ago) I have had several projects in mind for my husband and I to tackle. Top of my list was a storage solution for shoes and backpacks. Shoes and backpacks always seem to end up all over our house and it drives me crazy! I wanted a place that was somewhat organized and would work for our storage problem. Well in our family room we have this long wall that was pretty much empty. The room is a large room anyway, and the wall needed something. It is right off the door to go out into the garage. We are going in and out of that door all day long. So I thought we should make a DIY mudroom bench for our shoes and backpacks.
This is what I was working with before. An overflowing basket for shoes and hooks on the walls for the kids backpacks. And yes, we do have a table top Ms. Packman game. But it will find a new location in our house. It’s just too fun to get rid of.
Well I drew up a simple plan of what I was wanting and showed it to my husband who thought we could make it work. And then I showed it to my dad, who is a woodworker, and he helped me draw up some plans for our DIY mudroom bench.
The 3 of us got to work and built this awesome bench that I can’t wait to enjoy!
For this project I was sent some Elmer’s products to use in the construction of our bench.
Here are the types of wood we used for our DIY mudroom bench.
The first thing we did was build the frame that would be the face of the top of our mudroom bench. We used Elmer’s Wood Glue and screws to hold our frame together.
As we let glue dry on our frame, my husband and my dad worked on the base for storage and seating. I wanted to have 3 sections to store shoes and other items. The insides of the cabinet are made from Baltic Birch Plywood. I wanted to keep these natural and not paint the insides. This wood has a smooth coating that should hold up as baskets are pushed in and out of the boxes. I thought that if I painted the insides of the cabinet, the paint would start to wear over time. We also left the back of the boxes open to see the white bead board behind.
One the edges of our base, we left a 1/4″ inset on each side so that we could add a piece of the bead board on each end. By leaving that 1/4″ inset, we had a flush finish on both ends of our bench box.
I used the Elmer’s Color Change Wood filler to fill in the areas where the finish staples were used on the base frame and waited for it to dry. It changed from a tan to the natural wood color once it was dry and then I took a sander and sanded it until it was smooth.
We put inset frame molding inside our frame for the top of our bench to give it a more finished look. Here is our finished frame as we started fitting the moldings. We used a pin nailer to attach the molding to our frame.
I used caulk to fill in any gaps between the molding and the frame. This was the first time I’ve ever caulked anything and it was pretty easy. Plus it can help hide a lot of mistakes. 😉 I put a bead down the edge of the wood and smoothed it out with my finger.
I painted everything at least once with a coat of white paint before bringing it into the house. I painted the frame, the base and the bead board out in the shop using Swiss Coffee color paint.
To put our bench together in the house we started with the bead board and attached it to the wall using liquid nails and then a few finish staples. I used the Elmer’s wood filler on the areas where the staples were and this time I used the wood filler that turned from purple to white once it was dry. I used a fine grit sand paper to smooth out the areas and they were ready to be painted. The bead board comes in 4 ft. sections so we had to cut down one and fit them together. You can see the seam, but I just painted it and it was fine. You could also do a small amount of caulk to fill in that seam if you wanted.
Next we installed the base cabinet using screws and attached it to the studs in the wall to make it secure. Then we added the face frame to the top of the mudroom bench using finish staples. Again I filled in the staple areas using the wood filler and sanded them down.
We used more molding and a piece of 3″ board, we routed along the edges, to finish the top of our DIY mudroom bench. We used a pin nailer to attach it to the top of our bench frame. A pin nailer doesn’t need any wood filler, paint usually does the trick.
To make the bench we used 3/4″ random planks and glued them together and let them sit overnight to dry. I wanted it to have a more free pattern and using different size widths, lengths and types of wood really achieved the look I wanted. The next day we removed the clamps and we used a belt sander to smooth the top.
We added a molding to the edges around the front and sides of the bench to give it a more finished look and so you wouldn’t see all the wood planks on the ends of our seat. There was an area where we had a small gap between the trim and the wood that we filled in with the wood filler because it said it was stainable. Once it the wood filler was dry, we did one final light sanding over the entire top of the seat and then stained the whole thing with a walnut stain. We used a rag to quickly spread the stain over the top and used a paint brush to put the stain on the trim around the edge, and then wiped it with a clean rag. I was really impressed how well the wood filler took the stain. We let the stained board sit over night to dry.
To finish off our bench, I caulked all the joints and gave it a finish coat of paint over the entire thing.
I wanted to get all the painting done before adding the bench seat so that there was no chance of a paint accident on the stained wood. Then we attached the bench using 1″ screws and drilling through the bottom of the bench seat into the 1 1/2″ wood planks that ran along the top of the box base. We added the hooks and our DIY mudroom bench was done.
From the square base hooks, to the plank inspired wood stained seat, I think it turned out really great! I love all the details of this bench. It really turned out better than I hoped. And I love that we went with a darker stain on the wood top.
I’m so glad that we were finally able to cross one of our major projects off our list. And my hubby and I made it through our first big DIY together! I think our family will get a lot of use out of this DIY mudroom bench. My only wish is that the lighting was better in this room to see all those beautiful details.
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