How to turn a bookcase into a functional bench seat

Stylist Savannah Betti transforms a simple bookcase into a stylish seat with heaps of extra storage.

What you need:

  • Bookshelf (400mm x 280mm x 1060mm)
  • 1100mm x 450mm x 30mm clear laminated pine panel
  • Drill
  • 40mm screws
  • Resene EzyFill Quick
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint brushes
  • Resene SpaceCote Low Sheen in Resene White Linen
  • Resene Colorwood wood stain in Resene Oregon
  • PVA wood glue
  • Clamps
  • Woven baskets

Resene colours:

  • Resene White Linen
  • Resene Oregon

We painted the basket filled with foliage in Resene Milano Red.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE
IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

Method

1. Place the bookshelf on its side. Measure the length and width for a panel for the top, so it is slightly larger than the bookcase. It’s easiest to ask a timber supplier to cut the pine panel to size for you.

2. If the bookshelves are adjustable, arrange them in the positions you want so the baskets will fit. Drill holes and use screws to fix the shelves into place.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

3. Use Resene EzyFill Quick to fill any screw holes or blemishes. Leave to dry.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

4. Sand the entire bookshelf to prepare it for painting. Ensure any filled areas have been sanded, so they are smooth. Clean any excess dust away.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

5. Using Resene SpaceCote Low Sheen in Resene White Linen, apply the first coat to the bookcase.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

6. When it’s completely dry, apply a second coat.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

7. While the shelf is drying, prepare the pine panel for staining. Using a damp cloth, lightly wet the surface of the wood. Take another paint brush and dip it into Resene Colorwood wood stain in Resene Oregon. Spread evenly and wipe off any excess with a paper towel or clean cloth. Leave to dry. Repeat this process until you have reached the desired stain colour.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

8. When the pine panel and bookshelf are dry, spread PVA wood glue onto the surface of the bookshelf and carefully place panel.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

9. Clamp the pine panel to the bookshelf to secure it in place while it dries. Wipe away excess glue with a damp cloth.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

10. Using approximately 40mm screws, drill holes from inside the bookshelf, so that you can screw the panel on from inside the bookshelf. This will secure the panel without ruining the finish on the top of the bench seat. Note: Ensure the screws are shorter than the thickness of the pine panel and bookshelf combined.

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

11. Add the woven baskets, dress with cushions and throws, and enjoy!

IMAGE: MICHAEL MOORE

For more project ideas and inspiration visit your Resene ColorShop, resene.co.nz/colorshops.

This article is sponsored by Resene.


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