07th Nov2012


Garage Sale Bench Makeover

by Dinah Wulf

Here is my story about the best trash to treasure garage sale bench makeover ever.  Two weekends ago I got a call from my best friend.  It went something like this:

  • Jen: I just dropped Tiff off at school and am stopping at this garage sale.
  • Me: Ooooh is it any good?
  • Jen: Let me call you back.

<vibrate vibrate> (I never have my ringer on anymore these days)

  • Me: Well?
  • Jen: She’s moving and needs to sell everything this weekend.  She said she’d give you a good deal!
  • Me: I’m putting on my shoes! Text me the address!

In 5 minutes, we were out the door and my daughter was in her car seat.  It was the best garage sale I’d been to in a while.  A lot of stuff for cheap!  I walked away with two side tables and a bench for $15 total!!  I didn’t even have to haggle.  Yeah, I thought she was nuts too but I didn’t argue.

I had no idea what color to do so I posted it on my Facebook page.  I got a ton of great feedback but for some reason I still couldn’t choose. All I knew was that I wanted to add a cushion and upholster it on top.   I decided to go to the fabric store and stare at all the upholstery fabrics until one jumped out at me and I found this fabulous print that happen to match.

Side note: Please let me tell you that if you have a toddler, going to the fabric store to pick out something that is not yet decided is no easy feat.   The entire time I was there my daughter was running up and down the aisles, throwing yarn in the air and yelling out the wrong colors. Put her in the cart you say? Yeah right…

Also, because I am SO CHEAP I went back to the store 3 times on three different days, so that I could use a coupon for each item I bought.  What? It saved me $15! It was totally worth it.  I already had all the other supplies I needed from past projects so technically, this entire makeover cost me $20.00 including the bench! Woot woot!

Before I go on, here are the materials you need:

  • Bench
  • Spray paint
  • High density craft foam
  • Scissors
  • Yardstick
  • Fabric
  • Staple gun and staples

I first attempted to clean the bench and started wiping it down.  But the second a giant spider ran out and attacked me I decided to take this sucker outside and hose it off.  With the highest stream setting on my nozzle, I hosed it down and let it air dry outside.

After the bench dried, I spray painted it red.  I loved the original color and it matched my fabric, so I touched it up with some red spray paint with primer.

Meanwhile, using a ruler, pencil, and the best scissors ever, I cut some high density craft foam to fit over the top of my bench.

I also cut and measured my fabric.

I laid the foam on top of the center of my fabric and laid the bench on top upside down once it was dry.

Using a stable gun and heavy duty staples, I began pulling the fabric taught and stapling it to the bench.  The corners were a bit tricky, but with a little maneuvering and folding, I was able to make the sides look neat.

Here are a couple after photos.

That’s it!  I’m pretty proud of my $20 garage sale bench makeover that will go perfectly in my guest room at the foot of the bed! The best part is that I saw a smaller plain wood bench in a catalog for $149.00!

For more repurposing ideas and trash to treasure ideas, check out this fun round-up of garage sale and thrift store transformations! There are over two dozen original projects I have done including housewares and furniture transformations.

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Dinah has a Master of Arts Degree in Speech Communication from California State University Fullerton. She is a Curator for Style Me Pretty Living, a Blogger at Earth911 and GMC Trade Secrets, and a member of Martha’s Circle. Her website, DIY Inspired has been recognized by Mashable, Parenting.com, and Circle of Moms as a Most Creative Blog. Dinah was featured on Linqia’s Community Spotlight, as an influential community leader.

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