When I found these FREE very heavy and sturdy dumpster chairs, I knew they would make a fabulous triple chair bench, but what I didn't know is that I would finally figure out how to get a dry brushed look using Homeright Finish Max instead of a paint brush!
Easy Chair Bench Tutorial
These are the chairs as I found them at the dumpster. Sad and abused.
Those straight lines make these perfect for butting up side to side to make connecting them so very easy, even for a beginner. It will all be clear in this chair bench tutorial.
How to turn dumpster chairs into a bench
When building a typical triple chair bench, it is customary to remove the legs of the middle chair. I decided to make this the ultimate easy triple chair bench by leaving all the legs.
Detailed directions for attaching chairs to make the bench
I sanded the glossy (and gross) finish off of the three chairs. Then I secured them to one another using wood screws. You can see by the blue arrows where I secured the screws.
What's the easiest way to paint a chair bench project?
I used my favorite Finish Max to paint a base coat of diy chalky paint primer using black paint. The paint sprayer is so much easier than painting with a brush.
After mixing the chalky primer, always use a mesh paint strainer to make sure clumps don’t clog the Finish Max nozzle.
After doing the black chalky paint primer, I used an oops color that I thought was going to give me the old red I was going for. Not so much.
That’s totally okay, because it just gives me more of a base coat on the chair bench.
Red topcoat for chair bench
I went to one of my favorite reds from Heirloom Traditions Paint. This is Daredevil. This sample jar was practically empty and I was a little nervous, but I have complete faith in the fine finish I get from my Finish Max and how far paint goes in the paint container. For this technique—and because I didn’t have a lot of paint, I did dilute my paint with a little more water than I normally do.
Seriously!! Look how little paint is in that Homeright paint cup.
I did use nearly every drop out of the paint cup to get this chair bench painted RED. By keeping the Finish Max further away from the project, it allowed me to do a VERY light coat. It was my intention NOT to do full coverage. I love the look of an old glazed red, and I’ve been trying to perfect this technique with the paint sprayer so I don’t have to brush the paint on projects with spindles and legs.
Please note how little over spray there is with my Finish Max!
I get a lot of packages in the mail, and I always save the brown paper packaging. It is fabulous to use as a fine finish sandpaper. I used some to sand back a little more of the red paint to reveal the darker colors underneath.
Dark wax for rustic red bench
I used a damp chunk of a sponge to apply some clear wax from Heirloom Traditions Paint, rubbing a little more of the red paint back as I went.
These three pieces of scrap wide tongue and groove boards had been given to me years ago. They were perfect for the seat of this three chair bench!
I attached the boards with my nail gun. After sanding the boards to remove the squared edges, I was ready to stain/seal the seat.
But! I decided I loved the light color wood with the red, so I just did a wipe-on clear coat poly to seal the boards.
Glazed red chair bench
You could choose to put a lower shelf, but I went the easy route leaving lots of room for basket storage on the floor.
I am so happy with how this easy chair bench turned out. It has to be the easiest and one of my favorite chair benches to date. I love the color and the simplicity of the lines. Hopefully this chair bench tutorial will have you well on your way to making your own triple chair bench.
See one of my first, and an all-time favorite chair projects here
Hi, there! I’m Gail, the author and mastermind behind My Repurposed Life. I’m obsessed with finding potential in unexpected places and believe that with a little hard work and imagination, any old thing can be made useful again—myself included! I hope you’ll enjoy the journey and pick up a few tools along the way… literally!
Gail this project is absolutely beautiful. Love the red and love the fact that you just stained the seating. Great job..
I've made so many headboard benches, but this chair bench might be one of my favorite benches ever. I appreciate your kind words!
Love this chair bench . New to the group. I am so inspired . Thank you .
Awesome! Welcome to my little corner of the DIY/Repurposed world. I've been teaching others how to do this for 13 years now. Wow! That's hard to believe. I'm always here if you have any questions!
What a pity. This had been - or could have been - really nice chairs...
We'll agree to disagree. I think the chairs were very plain jane, and I absolutely love the way the bench turned out. I would do it again in a heartbeat! I've been looking for some more to do another version of this project for years.
I appreciate you stopping by to check it out.
upcycling, it's what I do. 🙂
The bench turned out so nice. And I don't even like red anything!
Thanks so much Lis! I've never really liked red much either, but in recent years, I find myself leaning more toward red projects. They do sell fairly well.
I love it, I'm a beginner. I'm going to try it. I'll post a reply with a picture.
This is the perfect project for a beginner Elizabeth!
Julie @ follow your heart woodworking
That really turned out great, Gail!
Wendi @ H2OBungalow
This is crazy creative! Love the finish too. I didn't know you could get a specialty finish with a HomeRight Paint Sprayer. It's on my want to do list now:)
Gail- this chair bench is beautiful! I'm completely inspired!
Thanks so much Allison! This is one of my all-time favorite projects-love that it was so easy, and the color just makes me smile. 🙂
I love the way your bench turned out, that red is so delicious and would look so good on my porch. I have some antique oak chairs I had planned to fix and refinish, but you know this would be so much easier and less time consuming. I think I just might give this a whirl. Great tutorial, thanks Gail.
I still love this RED bench! I think the color is perfect, and want to paint something red again real soon.
What a great find and a great project. I love the bare wood with the red
Thank you Karen! It's rare that I find dumpster chairs. I love making chair benches, and this was the easiest ever!
Oh yes, those chairs are perfect for this! I love the red!!
Man, this is so simple even my not-handy husband could probably do it (under my direction)! I'm going to be on the lookout for three similar chairs from now on.
I KNOW! I love the simplicity of it. It was such a fun and easy build!
I hope you make one real soon