Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sexy Bench


I made this bench to sell, but I ended up loving it so much that I decided to keep it.  I tend to love things more that are unique and one-of-a-kind, like this. 
Believe it or not, I found this little diamond in the rough at one of my favorite little hot spots for $3.00!  Yes, $3.00!  When I found it though, it looked like this.  This coffee table from the Triune Collection by Drexel (before Drexel Heritage) was a nice one in it’s day, which was in the early 1960's.  But it certainly had some wear.


It was missing a few trim pieces, 7 to be exact.


And I think somebody might have thought this was a delicious bone at some point?

When I initially saw it though, I didn’t see a coffee table, I saw a very long, firm bench!  When benches (and chairs, etc.) are made, they are usually made by attaching straps across a frame.  This works just fine for a typical bench or chair, but if you constantly use it to stand on to change a light bulb or to dust the ceiling fan, or maybe if your wild kids lovely children jump on it, the fabric will eventually rip from being pushed down further than it would from it’s intended purpose – sitting.  I figured this out the hard way.   So when I saw this table, I thought it would make a solid, indestructible bench.

Since I hate throwing stuff away that might have a use one day, I already had some trim that was just the right size, or close enough anyway.  Like my grandmother use to say, “Nobody would notice on a galloping horse!”  I knew that it was going to be painted so it didn’t matter what type of wood I used.  I removed a piece of trim to use as a template, and cut 7 trim pieces with mitered corners.  Applying wood glue first, I attached the trim pieces with the handy dandy staple gun, but with baby nails instead of staples.



Before painting, I taped off the burl wood overlay with painter’s tape.  I thought it was too pretty to paint over, and thought it might give a great contrast to the piece.  When this piece was originally made, the burl overlay was a nice part of the design, and I didn’t want to destroy that.

Isn’t this burl wood pretty?



I gave the frame a couple of coats of glossy black paint to give it a modern vibe.  And I painted the brass feet with a few coats of silver as well.

Then I painted the burl wood overlay with some stain to darken it up and make it shine again.

On to the cushion.  I thought about using 2” foam, or even doubling it up to get 4”, but then I decided to go all out and go for the really comfy, luxurious 4” foam since it was on sale.  Oh, I was in heaven just thinking about it!  So there I was at JoAnn Fabrics, in line to pay for my comfy, luxurious foam, when I almost had a heart attack right there at the register.  The foam was $150!!!!!  Yes, that’s right, $150!  Now I know that foam is expensive, which is why I carefully weighed all of my options first.  But when I saw this big SALE sign, I misread it.  Luckily, the nice ladies at JoAnn’s helped me out, as usual!  Using my JoAnn App for I-phone, the cashier quickly helped me use a 50% off foam coupon!   I didn’t use all of that foam for this project, and will hopefully be able to make two more stools with the scraps.


Nice looking foam, huh?  Sometimes it’s the small things………

I covered the table top with spray glue and set the foam in place, having already cut the foam to size, and then covered the foam with a layer of batting.  After the glue was dry and the foam was attached, I turned it over on top of the fabric that I used to cover the bench, and stapled it on. 

TIP:  When stapling fabric to the back of a surface of a chair, bench, etc., draw a line on the surface you will be stapling to, to use as a guide when stapling.  In this case, before removing the top from the table frame, I used a pencil to trace around the inside of the frame underneath, so that I would know how far in to staple.  I hate it when you turn a bench or chair over that someone has recovered and you can see all the rough edges of the fabric hanging out.   It just looks like sloppy work to me.  Of course no one would ever know unless they flipped the piece over to look at it, but I always look.   Doesn’t this look like a neat job?


The fabric I used for this bench is faux mink fur.  And it is OH-SO-SOFT!  And I think this is what makes this bench look sexy to me.  It just feels luxurious.  This bench is actually more comfortable than our bed!


I ended up placing this bench at the foot of our king size bed just to see what it would look like. The other bench that was there looked okay, but after replacing it with this one, the size of this just fits better with a king bed because it's almost two feet longer than the other bench.   It’s funny that I never realized the other bench was too short until I made the sexy bench.

I used the same stain on the burl overlay as I did on this recent headboard project:  You can barely see the headboard in the photo below, but don’t they look good together?


The final touch on this project was supposed to be some shiny silver upholstery tacks along the edge of the fabric, to go along with the silver feet at the bottom.  But after nailing in the first tack, I realized it was a waste of time because the tack became lost in the fur and barely visible. 

Thanks for checking out my sexy bench, homies!  Do you like it as much as I do? Pin It

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