Vintage Simple Bench Nighstand

Submitted by Ana White on Mon, 09/21/2015 - 10:18
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Make a simple bench for a charming nightstand!  Easy plans by

Hope you had a great weekend!  Ours just flew by!  Where does time go when you have littles?

Last week, I shared with you the platform bed that I designed for our Alaska Lake cabin -

Thank you for all the positive feedback!  I'm so glad so many of you liked it.  

Did you notice the little nightstands?

These guys were a little bit of a happy accident.

We were down to just a couple of 1x12 boards leftover from trimming out the ceiling.  The film crew was scheduled to arrive in the morning, and I really wanted something next to the beds.  

So we whipped these guys out!  It took us about 20 minutes to build each one.

The finish is Rustoleum Chalked in Country Gray

After applying the paint, I sanded the corners and edges with coarse sandpaper to reveal the light wood underneath.  Then a quick clear top coat was added to protect.  This is such a simple project, having an interesting finish was absolutely necessary to make this bench stand out.

Well, I can't wait to see how you finish yours!

The free plans follow (if this is the homepage you'll need to click READ MORE below).  Thanks so much for reading and following along!

XO Ana

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.

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