DIY Upholstered Bench Tutorial

by Emma Jeffery

This bench is the perfect perch for your entryway and can be made to fit any sized space. Plus, it has a removable cushion so you can switch out the fabrics if you fancy a change. I think this is a perfect DIY for any home as it not only allows you to work with a variety of materials, like fabric, metals and wood, but it also serves up an equal dose of function and fashion.

Materials Needed:

  • Bench top to preferred dimensions. For this project, we use a 36” long by 12” deep bench top.
  • 4 bench legs
  • Wood screws
  • Wood panel that will serve as your cushion base. Size should be slightly shorter than the bench length. For this project, we use 30” long by 10.5” deep.
  • Foam block precut to same size as wood panel. (If not precut, directions for cutting foam to size in Step 3 below)
  • Batting
  • Fabric that matches your room color story
  • Adhesive Velcro

Steps to Making a DIY Upholstered Bench

Comfortable seating is always needed in my home, so creating a project that allows me to make changes when I want to feature a new fabric color depending on the season (or my mood!) was just what I was looking for. Also, keep in mind that this project is totally customizable, so if mid-century modern isn't your style, choose a different pair of legs to attach to the bottom. If your room requires a darker stain, add it to the wooden base. Let your creativity run wild!

Step 1

Prepare the wood.

Prepare the precut wood panel by sanding it with a sanding block and applying wood stain, if using. Allow to dry fully before attaching the legs.

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Step 2

Attach the legs.

Mark the position of the hairpin legs on the bottom of your wood panel and drill pilot holes with the Fiskars® Hand Drill.

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Screw the legs in place on the underside of the wood panel with the Fiskars® screwdriver.

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Step 3

Cut the foam to size.

Using the Fiskars® tape measure, measure and mark the foam at 30" x 10.5", which is the same size as the piece of plywood. Use the Fiskars® saw to quickly cut the foam to your measured size.

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Step 4

Assemble the cushion.

Place the cut foam on top of the plywood. Cover the foam with batting and staple the batting to the underside of the plywood using the Fiskars® staple gun. Trim away any excess batting with the Fiskars® shears.

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Next, cover the foam and batting with a piece of fabric cut to size. Again, staple the fabric to the underside of the plywood and trim away any excess fabric with the shears.

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Step 5

Attach the cushion to the wood.

Cut lengths of self-adhesive heavy-duty Velcro and apply to the top of the wood panel and underside of the cushion. The heavy-duty Velcro is very effective at holding the seat cushion in place, but also allows you to remove the cushion and change the fabric, if desired.

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You'll notice the bench cushion is cut smaller than the bench itself. This was done purposefully to create a flat space to rest your purse or set a pillow. That being said, if you want your entire bench covered, just cut you cushion elements to a larger size.

Where should I put my new bench?

I stationed my bench in my entry way, which was perfect for my family to use as a resting space once we entered the house. This would also look great in a bedroom against a wall, in front of a fireplace or even as alternative seating for a dining room table.

How do I clean my new bench?

Since I chose a faux suede fabric for my cushion cover, I simply use a cloth to wipe the fabric clean. If you use a cotton cover, feel free to dampen a cloth to help remove any set-in stains.

How much do the materials cost for this project?

While this project is a little on the expensive side coming in at $150, it is significantly less expensive than if you were to buy a bench like this in stores.

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