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Corner bench seat with storage

Both functional and stylish, this bench seat will not only give you somewhere to sit and relax but also provide you with waterproof storage, perfect for rainy winter days.

How to build an outdoor bench seat

Here's another idea: You could also use this guide to create a bench seat to be placed indoors in a dining nook or entryway.

As seen in kiwigardener

You will need


  • 90mm x 45mm framing timber cut to the following lengths:
    • 4 x 750mm
    • 4 x 1150mm
    • 8 x 220mm
    • 8 x 310mm
  • 1200mm x 1200mm x 18mm plywood panel (for the seat top)
  • 2400mm x 1200mm x 12mm plywood panel (for the sides)
  • 3m of 120cm-wide weatherproof canvas fabric
  • 8m of 40mm x 18mm pine trim
  • 30mm x 1.6mm nails
  • 150mm screws
  • Contact adhesive spray
  • Nail filler
  • Resene Quick Dry waterborne primer undercoat
  • Resene Lustacryl semi-gloss waterborne enamel paint, in your choice of colour (we used Resene Rice Cake)
  • Single foam mattress with the cover removed


  • Circular saw
  • Clamps
  • Craft knife
  • Drop saw
  • Hammer
  • Impact driver
  • Paint roller and tray
  • Pencil
  • Putty knife
  • Sandpaper
  • Scissors
  • Staple gun
  • Tape measure


How to build an outdoor bench seat with storage:

Step 1 Step one
Arrange two 1150mm and 310mm lengths of timber into a rectangle and clamp together, as shown. Screw the frame together and repeat to create a second identical frame.

Step 2 Step two
Place one frame on the ground and screw a 220mm length of timber to each corner, vertically as shown.

Step 3 Step three
Place the second rectangular frame on top to create a box, then screw together.

Step 4 Step four
Repeat the first step with the 750mm and 310mm timber lengths to create two smaller rectangle frames.

Step 5 Step five
Attach one of these to the base of the box, creating an L shape.

Step 6 Step six
Once again add the four 220mm vertical supports and top with the second rectangle to create a box, as shown.

Step 7 Step seven
Accurately measure each of the side faces of the frame and cut the 12mm plywood to size using a circular saw. You may find it useful to screw each panel on as you go, before measuring the next piece.

Step 8 Step eight
If you haven’t already, screw the panels in place.

Step 9 Step nine
Add the pine trim. We found it easiest to measure, cut and nail every length one by one, starting with the horizontal lengths on all faces and then fitting in each vertical length.

Step 10 Step ten
Fill in all the nail holes along the trim and allow the filler to dry.

Step 11 Step eleven
Measure the top of your bench seat (including trim) and cut the 18mm plywood to size. Avoid cutting an L shape; instead, cut two rectangles to follow the shape of the original two boxes.

Step 12 Step twelve
Place the two rectangular plywood panels onto the foam and use the edges as a guide to cut the foam to size.

Step 13 Step thirteen
Spray contact adhesive onto one side of each of the plywood panels and carefully place the foam into position, aligning each edge.

Step 14 Step fourteen
Using the cushion seats as a guide, cut the weatherproof canvas fabric to size, allowing approx. 20cm along each side to be folded over.

Step 15 Step fifteen
Lay the canvas fabric out, place one cushion seat on top (plywood side up) and then wrap the cushion like a present using the staple gun, remembering to pull the fabric tight with each side so there are no wrinkles. Pay close attention to the corners so the fabric folds neatly.

Step 16 Step sixteen
Sand down the dried nail filler on the bench.

Step 17 Step seventeen
Apply a coat of Resene Quick Dry waterborne primer undercoat to all faces of the box, including the inside, and allow to dry.

Step 18 Step eighteen
Apply two coats of Resene Lustacryl semi-gloss waterborne enamel paint tinted to Resene Rice Cake to the bench, allowing each coat to dry.

Step 19 Step nineteen
Move your bench seat into position, fill it with gardening tools, cushions or anything else you want to keep dry, and place the cushioned seats on top. Sit back, relax and admire your handiwork!

Detail - of outside seating area Detail
Somewhere to sit an relax - functional and stylish.

Words and photos by Klaudia Krupa

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