Simple 1x12 Bench or Bedside Table

easy to build bench nightstand
Starter Projects
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Very simple, easy to build and customize bench with storage shelf.

Can be used in an entryway, bedroom, as a plant stand, as an side table, or anywhere you need an accent piece with a little storage and surface area.

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Simple 1x12 Bench

simple to build bench
Dimensions shown above


Shopping List

1 - 1x12 @ 8 feet long

1 - 1x4 @ 4 feet long

Common Materials
1 1/4 inch finish nails
120 grit sandpaper
Cut List

2 - 1x12 @ 17-1/4" (legs)

1 - 1x12 @ 18-1/2" (bottom shelf)

1 - 1x12 @ 24" (top)

2 - 1x4 @ 24" (side trim)

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Circular Saw
Brad Nailer
General Instructions

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!


Step 1

Use a jigsaw to cut out the bottoms of the two sides using the dimensions in the diagrams above to guide you.

Step 2

Attach the shelf and top to the legs.  You can use nails and glue (1-1/4" - 2" in length recommended) or pocket holes if you have a Kreg Jig (3/4" pocket holes and 1-1/4" pocket hole screws).  If you do use pocket holes, attach the top first because once the shelf is in place you won't be able to fit your drill inside.

Step 3

Use 1-1/4" finish nails and glue to attach the side support pieces to the top and legs.  This piece ties everything together.

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.