Intro: Ugly Old Cabinet to Comfortable Padded Bench
• 1 Used Over the stove or refrigerator style cabinet
• Screwdriver – type will depend upon your specific hardware
• Paint Brushes
• Spray Primer
• Oil Based Paint – Color of Your Choice
• Old Pillows or Foam
• Fabric to cover padded top
• Backing Material ( Thin Paneling or wood) * Optional *
Step 1: Choose Your Cabinet
We used an old above the refrigerator style cabinet. Since we are in the remodeling business, we get tons of these for "free". However, they are often posted on Craigslist and other sites for free as well.
This size is perfect for a bench. This particular cabinet was from the 70's and is particle board, but still pretty sturdy.
Step 2: Dissasemble and Clean
Now the fun part. Take the cabinet doors off and clean inside. This one was quite dusty. Make sure you save the hardware.
Step 3: Choose Which Side Will Be the Top
As you look at the cabinet, the depths may be different on the top and bottom. Take into consideration whether you will be using this as a padded bench or just a shelf for potted plants. If you plan to use it as a padded bench, choose the side that has more depth to accommodate your pillows or foam.
Step 4: Save Your Hinges and Screws
Use a Ziploc bag or jar to keep all your screws and hinges in. It will save you time and misery later on. Plus, we painted ours silver. The bronze just didn't look right with the color we chose. Silver Metallic Finish Spray Paint worked just fine. Make sure you use a mask when using spray paint. Always, spray in a well ventilated area.
Step 5: Paint, Reassemble and Place Pillows
We didn't show the painting and reassemble steps as they are fairly self explanatory. However, we used a white spray primer and a can of blue "oops" paint from Home Depot. They put these oops cans out daily in the paint section and are usually pretty cheap. Our gallon was $7.00. It wasn't a fantastic paint job, as we wanted it to look a little "used". When replacing hinges make sure you check alignment before screwing them on. If you have to take them off and on too many times they will get stripped and finding another one just the right size can be difficult. Once everything is put back together find some old pillows or foam to place in the top of the cabinet. At this point you may want to add some type of backing on the cabinet. If you are placing it flush to the wall, it won't matter so much, but we suggest using a extra piece of paneling or something thin. Cut it down to size and tack or staple it on.
Step 6: Cover and Finish
We used an old long skirt to cover the pillows. Actually,we just stuck the pillows inside the skirt and tucked the edges in. You could definitely sew it neat and tidy. Be creative, use an old shower curtain, a vinyl tablecloth from the dollar store or ? You could put locking casters on the bottom to make it a little taller and more mobile. Or find a few others the same size and line the wall under a window. Use it as a padded bench or forget the padding and use it as a flower bench, bookshelf or ? We always go by the motto - "Use what you have". So, don't spend a fortune when repurposing an item. Instead, look around, trade with friends, curb shop etc. most importantly: Have fun.