One of the easiest ways to elevate your entryway is to build a bench. It’s a surprisingly easy DIY project that only needs a couple of power tools: a drill and a circular saw. Not only can an entryway bench add a touch of home to a neglected space, it can also provide some much-needed space to store all that footwear and gear. This project only takes a couple of hours, but you can make a day of it by treating the wood with a weathered treatment, paint, or a stain to get a look that complements the rest of your space.
Build Your Entryway Bench
Makita’s line of cordless circular saws like, the 6-1/2″ Plunge Cut Circular Saw, can help you ace this project, and any other DIY builds you have on your list. With a brushless DC motor that prevents heat buildup, constant speed control, a depth stopper to prevent splintering, and a lightweight, ergonomic design, you can efficiently and safely get the job done. Browse Makita’s full line of circular saws here.
Prep Your Area
Measure out the space you want your bench to go, taking into consideration the dimensions of any items or storage bins you might want to put under the bench. The design we’re going for here only requires your saw, drill, wood screws and a sanding tool. In this design, we’ll be cutting from two 2×8’s to make the seat of the bench, and cutting down 2×4’s to create sturdy legs for the bench. We’ll be attaching the legs to the top of the bench with wood screws. It’s that easy!
Choose Your Wood Type
When choosing your wood, look for the flattest pieces for less prep later on, and either have them cut at your hardware store, or cut them at home using your circular saw. The type of wood you choose will depend on the ultimate look you’re going for and whether you want to treat the wood. Oak is a great choice due to the wood’s density and strength, but a lighter wood like birch lends itself to a natural look.
Gather Your Tools
Not every tool on this list is a must-have for this project, but at minimum, you’ll need a circular saw, drill and wood screws. For a more finished look to your wood, consider investing in an orbit sander or a sanding block.
- Circular saw
- Safety gear, including goggles and gloves
- 24 x 2.5” wood screws
- One 2×8, 8’ long
- One 2×4, 8’ long
- Orbit sander or 120-grit fine sand block
- Wood stain or paint
- Adhesive felt pads
Cut Your Wood to Size
Our design uses two side-by-side 2×8 pieces for the bench seat, and four smaller 2×4 pieces for each leg. First, determine the length you want your bench to be. A length in the range of 3 to 4 feet allows you to cut down your 2×8 either exactly in half, or cut down further and have some extra wood leftover. Once you’ve cut down your 2×8 to your desired length, get to work on the legs for your bench.
The legs will be cut from your 2×4. Using your circular saw, cut the 2×4 down to size to build the four pieces required for each leg. The two legs combined will consist of these pieces:
- 4 x 15.5” long pieces
- 4 x 8” long pieces
Prep the Wood
Once your pieces are all cut, this is the best time to sand your wood using either your orbit sander or sand block.
Create Your Bench Legs
Once all your pieces are cut, you’ll use the 2×4 pieces to make two rectangles for the legs. Lay your pieces on the floor on their shortest edges, lining up the 8” pieces inside the top and bottom of the 15.5” pieces to make your rectangle. You’ll then drill two 2.5” wood screws into each end of the 15.5” pieces to attach them to the 8” pieces. Your finished result at this step will be two rectangular-shaped legs. The top of your bench will rest on the shortest sides of each rectangle.
Attach the Legs to the Seat
Now, you can attach the legs to the two 2×8 pieces of your bench seat. For the most precision, you’ll attach these parts upside down. Lay flat your two 2×8 pieces so they line up perfectly along their longest edges. Then, place your rectangular legs on top of the 2x8s along the rectangles’ shortest (8”) edges. Allow for about 2” of overhang between the legs and the edges of the bench seat. Then, for each leg, drill two 2.5” wood screws on either end of the inside of the top of your legs. You’ll have four screws total inside each 8” piece attached to your bench seat. Once you’re done, flip your bench right-side up, and you’re ready to treat or paint the wood, if so desired. For a final touch, you can add some adhesive felt pads to the bottom of your bench’s legs to prevent damage to your floor.