Today’s project is something I’ve never done before. I made a small cabinet door bench. After I saw a bench on pinterest that had some sides with detail, I remembered that I had many of these cabinet doors in my shed.
ReStore Cabinet Doors
I bought about 20 of these a couple of years ago for $1 each. At the bottom of this post, I’ll share the other projects I made using these bargain cabinet doors.
Because two sides of the doors had a beveled edge (or slant) I had to trim them slightly on the table saw. All four sides needed to be squared off. Hindsight 20/20, I should have trimmed all four sides up against that small edge. I’ll share later why I should have done this.
You can see I removed only a small portion. of the edge.
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Designing the Bench
To make the left and right side of bench base I needed two cabinet doors, two small pieces of 1x4, quick clamps, gorilla wood glue and my nail gun. I was definitely making this up as I went along.
Left and Right Leg Components
Spreading the wood glue, carefully clamping, and shooting the brad nails left me with a little boxed in section.
Using some scrap 1x6’s I added some height to the bench as well as making the base of the bench supports look nicer. You can see the difference of these two. The one on the right has already received the router treatment.
I really didn’t want to drag out the router table, but I knew that the base would look so much better if I dressed it up a little.
I love using my nail gun as a glorified clamp!After I spread the wood glue, I popped in a couple of brad nails to hold the pieces together—so much easier than trying to secure screws. The glue makes the pieces slip. The brad nails hold everything secure for the next step.
Draw Outline of Legs
Tracing the outline of the base on the top board helps me know where to drill the pilot holes that will secure the base to the support.
Secure Legs to Base
I started all of the wood screws to make it easier to attach the base to the support.
Using more wood glue and these strong wood screws will give a great hold for the bench supports.
The soft wood allows me to easily countersink the wood screws so the base will rest flush on the floor.
You can see by looking down into the bench support that the screws are securely positioned perfectly thanks to tracing the outline and pre-drilling the pilot holes.
Cabinet Door Bench Base
Pretty cool, eh? This part of the project went really smoothly and quickly.
Attach Bench Seat
I found this was the easiest way to figure out the placement of the bench supports onto the bench seat which consists of two 1x6’s and one 1x4.
To get the spacing equal on the right and left support I used my kreg multi-mark tool and my combination square. After getting them perfect, I traced around the edges with a carpenter’s pencil.
Attach Seat with Wood Glue
There is only one spot in my driveway that is level enough to work on a project like this. See how I have traced around the edges? That will guide me when I go to shoot the staples that will hold the seat in place (as well as the wood glue). I chose to do the middle board first, gluing and stapling each end to keep the supports from shifting.
I repeated the process with the front and back bench seat boards. Glue and staple.
Tracing really made all the difference! I wouldn’t have been able to hit the center of those cabinet doors and 1x’s had I not traced the outline.
Cabinet Door Bench Ready For Paint
I used spackling to patch the small staple dents.
Heirloom Traditions chalk type paint in the color Repose was chosen to keep the bench a nice neutral color. (use the promo code MYREPURPOSEDLIFE to get this month’s deal from HTP) The paint was applied with a cheap chip brush. I always start painting my projects upside down.
I did two coats of the Repose on the bench.
Pretty Gray Bench
This is the bench after two coats of chalk type paint, but no wax yet.
I used clear wax from Heirloom Traditions along with one of their wax brushes. I buffed the wax with a soft cloth.
In this photo, you can see how the wax changes the hue of the color. See the small portion of the support that got some wax on it while I was doing the underside of the bench seat.
Earlier I mentioned that I should have trimmed all the edges of the cabinet doors. See the small gap where the cabinet door meets the underneath side of the bench seat? I don’t think it’s something anyone will notice, but sure wish I had cut it.
Here is the finished bench after it was waxed. This was a really fun project.
DIY Cabinet Door Bench
I think this bench is very versatile—great for outdoor seating, extra seating indoors, or even makes a great coffee table for the patio.
What do you think? Do you love benches as much as I do?
Here are the other projects I did with these cabinet doors.
Planter made from $1 cabinet doors
ABC Toy Box made from Repurposed Cabinet Doors.
Have you repurposed cabinet doors? If you’re looking for ideas, maybe the projects below will get your creative juices flowing.
i really love how this turned out. great re-purpose of those cabinet doors.
chris aka monkey
another awesome bench from cabinet doors, this might just be my favorite so far xx
This was a great project! I loved how it came together. Don't have any cupboard doors right now or even a work station, but it's something I'd definitely keep in mind. Still putting things together after my move last Sept. Hoping to create a "work" bench in the garage. Since I rent, I have to really think about how I do things, so I don't break any rules and for taking everything with me when the day comes that I need to move.
You have so many great ideas! I love looking through all your posts and getting great ideas for potential storage projects and just fun decorative items. Thanks for sharing!
I so appreciate you stopping by to check out this project Teckla! As for a work bench, you could always get a banquet table and raise it up, or find an old door and set it up on some sawhorses. Where there's a will there's a way! 😉
I've been wondering what to do with my old cabinet doors. There are 22 of them, all plywood. This is the best idea I've seen on what to do with them.
Awesome Brette! So happy to inspire you, it makes my day!
hi Gail. love the new bench you made from the cabinet doors. love your imagination. I'm the lady you made the distressed shelf for. they are finally up. now waiting for window in that room to be done so I can put up the ironstone. as soon as that's done I will take pictures for you.
I look forward to seeing the shelves in their new home. I know my friends will love seeing them and the tutorial on the blog very soon!
I really enjoyed this. Thanks!
I really like the look of those "legs" with the cabinet doors on each side! Again you come up with something great that I never would have thought of doing.
Stunning and very clever to use simple cabinet door and 1x lumber.
My wife keeps asking me why do we need so many benches? i love making them too.
I'm glad I'm not alone Mike! Aren't they fun to make? Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment!
I love it! I have some cabinet doors just waiting for a purpose! One question on wax ... is it durable to stand up to the elements? Thank you for sharing! I can't wait to try this!
No, I'm sorry to say that wax is not durable enough to withstand the outdoor elements. Some sort of poly sealer would be in order if this bench were to be left outdoors unprotected
Mary G. M.
Wow! Gail, you never disappoint. I am not a blogger, just a reader. Your projects really encourage us females to do more woodworking projects. This is another one done with minimal cost - I love it. My woodworking projects don't always come out straight, but I keep trying. I think I need more clamps in various sizes to hold things so they don't move. 'Love your blog.
-Mary G. M.
Clamps are great when you work alone. I also use my nail gun to get a temporary hold until I can use screws. It has taken me years to figure out all the tips and tricks I share with you!
Great job again, Gail! I love the "tailored" look of the support legs. I can see why this was a fun project. Tracing the design for placement of the screws is a great idea. Thanks for sharing!
Benches are so much fun to build. This is a great tutorial and love all the details. I don't normally build with glue I may have to give that a try on a future project.
I almost always use Gorilla wood glue on my projects. Sometimes I skip it when I use my Kreg jig, but it adds so much extra strength.
Thanks for stopping by Carole!