Quarantine Building Hacks

Do you know how hard it is to juggle two kids, a full time job, and house projects? We’re still getting things done around here, just… slowly.

One of the projects we were DIYing for the kitchen was a built-in bench for the mudroom.  Minnesota went into lockdown just as I was starting it, but thankfully we had already purchased most of the supplies.

The bench plan is pretty simple. We already had existing shoe racks that we decided to reuse, especially since they fit the space almost perfectly. To encase the shoe racks I just had to add a top, support legs, and some finishing details..

The top was built out of 2 1×8’s joined with pocket holes, giving us a depth of about 15″.  I used 2x4s for the support legs and connected them to the top with pocket holes as well. Why pocket holes? They allow for the strength of screws without any fasteners being seen.  I officially love my Kreg jig!

Our shoe racks fit perfectly between the legs and once some trim is added it will look like a perfect built in while still utilizing some existing pieces.

The top, however, is deeper than the shoe racks since people’s butts are usually bigger than their feet.  I don’t want the shoe racks to get pushed back so I needed a spacer between them and the wall.  Enter the 2×4….which I don’t have and which probably isn’t considered an essential item at this point in time.

I did have a small scrap of 2×4 though, just not enough for my ideal solution but needs must when the devil drives… so I sliced it into thin bits and glued it to the back the shoe racks.

Elegant? No, but it should do the job at least and allow me to get on with this project.

With the structure in place and everything lined up it still needed some finishing work.  We cut and painted some scrap MDF to hide the 2×4 legs on the inside then ripped down a 1×4 to hide the supports on the outside.  These pieces just got brad nailed into place.

While I was working on the bench I was waiting for my wallpaper to arrive.  Oh yeah, that’s right, MORE wallpaper. People still think I’m completely nuts, but that’s ok!* Matt even helped me hang it on his birthday while the kids were sleeping since it goes much more easily with two people.

I think it look fabulous! We don’t have much wall space for art in the kitchen so it also adds a much needed pop of interest. Once I’m free to go to the hardware store again I still have a few more details to add. I want to paint the inside of the back door a brighter blue and add a little more trim to bench to camouflage the fact that the walls are not at all square.  This room was even more modern addition and it’s STILL not remotely square.  Or level.

 

**Because, let’s be honest, I AM completely nuts

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