Barn Wood Benches DIY

We recently got rid of an old couch (Check out what we did with the leather in Apothecary #3) in our living room, which really opened up our space. It was placed in front of our giant 8ft. front window.

Quickly after that couch was gone, Sam placed our three houseplants (which were in our kitchen windowsill; being Winter in Utah, it’s way too cold to keep the plants there) on the carpet, in front of our newly freed-up space. Charming? Hardly. My dear Sam was just trying to keep these plants healthy though, I knew. After watching the plants new home on the carpet for a few days, I thought this won’t do.

Duh! Make a window bench to house the plants! Sam loved the idea, and so we jumped on the project immediately.

We went “shopping” for material in our garage turned wood shed. The options were limitless!! After hauling up a ton of wood, we sorted it all out, and started the process of letting the wood guide us where to go.

A pile of wood of various sizes sitting on a pair of saw horses in a wood shop

Here is where the fun began. We picked out the panel that was about big enough for our plants:

An old piece of grayed oak wood cladding taken off a barn in Montana with black nail holes

This gorgeous piece was it. This piece Of solid oak was salvaged off an old barn somewhere in Montana, and had been set up against some cement (as we found chunks of cement that had filled in some knot holes.) A little rough, right? But with original saw tooth marks, and nail holes! It was a little dirty, but after washing and some light skip sanding, this is what we came out with:

An old piece of grayed oak wood cladding taken off a barn in Montana with black nail holes

Check out these saw tooth marks!

A close up of old oak barn wood after it had been washed and skip sanded with saw tooth marks

Then Sam picked out some pieces to frame the top by mitering each cut.

An old oak barn wood plank with oak barn wood framing and mitre cuts

Now, the pieces that were chosen were different widths, so it created small triangle gaps at the corners. We went with it.

Then came the legs, and the skirt that hid where the legs were attached.

An oak barn wood bench with oak saw tooth marked skirt and legs sitting in front of a window on blue carpet

It turned out great! It’s the perfect little bench for our plants.

An oak barn wood bench sitting in front of a tan curtain with plants sitting on blue carpet in front of it

Being our first piece, we decided to put a couple of protective coats of water based polyurethane over it, and did not oil or stain the oak.

And remember those little triangle holes?

An overhead look of an oak barn wood bench with two red epoxy circles on the corners of the inside panel holding two plants, a jade plant and mother in law’s ear

We filled them with epoxy. We used a quick setting epoxy you can purchase at any store, and used food coloring to dye it red. It ended up setting quicker than we wanted, and came out a bit foggy instead of clear:

A close up look at the corner of an oak barn wood bench corner with a circle in the corner of the panel that meets the edges of two mitre frame pieces filled with red epoxy

After we completed this first bench, Sam and I looked at each other and thought “what should we do with the rest of the wood we cut the top out of?” I started to feel like this wood needed to stay together, and so did Sam… so he whipped out a second bench in half the time. The design was a little different, but it nests under the first one!

Two nesting oak barn wood benches sitting in front of a large backlit window with the larger bench holding five plants

Slat-style tapered legs:

Slay styled Oak barn wood bench legs with a taper at the bottom

Now this second one has a gap on each of the shorter sides of the panel, and we plan on filling these holes with epoxy as well, but we aren’t sure what kind is best. (Check our my updated post in Barn Wood Bench: Finishing the Epoxy). Do you have any suggestions? Leave me a comment or contact me if so.

The last portion of this story, continues with one last piece of oak panel left. It wasn’t much to do anything with but Sam has a great Christmas present in mind for me: (check out my next post)

A Pirate Treasure Box!

With Love, Erika Nora

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