How to Build a Kitchen Table Bench

Benches provide versatile seating options in the kitchen.

Benches around the kitchen table provide flexible seating, and can do double duty as a coffeetable.Benches around the kitchen table provide flexible seating, and can do double duty as a coffeetable.
Kids love them, and they squeeze a lot of seating into a small space. Not only can benches seat a large number of people inexpensively, but they can be placed against the wall when not in use. You can even use them for display. Build your own bench that fits into almost any decor and features reinforced seat construction.

Spread a layer of glue on the cut end of a 2-by-12-by-15 1/2-inch board, which will be the bench leg. Butt this end against the bottom of one end of a 2-by-12-by-60-inch board--this will be the bench seat. Make sure the end of this bench seat is even with the outside of the bench leg. Drive three nails through the seat into the end of the leg.

Repeat step one with the second leg (another 2-by-12-by-15 1/2-inch board) on the other end of the bench seat to complete the basic bench frame.

Miter both ends of two 1-by-4-by-61 1/2-inch boards and two 1-by-4-by-13-inch boards.

Lay one of the 1-by-4-by-13-inch boards so the mitered corners face upward. Spread a layer of glue on the flat side and position it against the flat side of the bench leg, so the top edge of the 1-by-4 is level with the top of the bench. Drive four nails in a square pattern through the 1-by-4 and into the bench leg.

Repeat step four with the other 1-by-4-by-13-inch board on the other bench leg.

Run a bead of glue along the length of one side of the bench top, and on the miter and top of the bench leg at both ends. Position a 1-by-4-by-61 1/2-inch board against this glued area, with its top edge aligned with the top of the bench, and attach it using nails. Drive two nails through the 1-by-4 into one bench leg; repeat with the other bench leg. Using 21 nails spaced about 3 inches apart, nail through the 1-by-4 into the bench seat to make a secure connection.

Repeat step six on the other side of the bench with another 1-by-4-by-61 1/2-inch board. This will complete the reinforcement for the bench seat.

Use a nailset to drive the heads of all the nails slightly below the surface of the wood, and fill the holes with wood putty. Use a damp cloth to wipe off all excess glue.

When all glue and putty is dry, sand lightly with 150-grit sandpaper to smooth the putty and gently round sharp edges of the wood. Finish the wood as desired. Attach the four glides to the bottom of the bench legs.

Things You Will Need

  • Hammer
  • Cross-cut saw
  • Miter saw
  • 64 4-inch nails
  • Carpenter's glue
  • Damp cloth
  • Wood putty
  • 150-grit sandpaper
  • Wood finish of your choice
  • 1 2-by-12-by-60-inch board
  • 2 2-by-12-by-15 1/2-inch boards
  • 2 1-by-4-by-61 1/2-inch boards
  • 2 1-by-4-by-13-inch boards
  • Nailset
  • 4 furniture glides

About the Author

North Carolina native Mike Southern has been writing since 1979. He is the author of the instructional golf book "Ruthless Putting" and edited a collection of swashbuckling novels. Southern was trained in electronics at Forsyth Technical Community College and is also an occasional woodworker.