I love a good hack! I mean, who doesn’t? I saw this woven wrap bench from CB2 and… you know what happened, that thought that plagues all us DIYers danced in my head, ‘hey, I can make that!’ It’s an illness. You’ve got it, I’ve got it. There is no cure. Except money, maybe money is the cure? Sorry CB2, I can’t afford a $400 bench, so.. I’m gonna hack it? Why yes, yes I am.
Now, the take-away for any good hack is to not replicate it exactly. Make it your own in some way. I mean, unless you can hack it so exact it’s like a replica. I know my limitations and there’s no way I could hack those legs, so I took the essence of the wrap bench and made my version. Let’s go!
First, go to the banister/decking section of your home improvement store and get the 2″x2″ pieces of redwood. I tried using the 2″x2″s in the regular wood section before in a different project and they just splintered on me. Do I know what I’m doing? Probably not. What kind of wood is in the regular wood section? Not sure! I am absolutely not a woodsmith, and I’m not going to pretend to be! I’m sure there are fancy tools that I should be using to prevent splitting wood, but alas I’m impatient and I just want to build things with my drill and miter saw. I bought 5 of the 2″x2″s in the decking section. I forget how long they are, 48″?
You will need to cut the following:
2 pieces of 45″ 2″x2″
4 pieces of 16″ 2″x2″
2 pieces of 14″ 2″x2″
Also, grab two bundles of 200ft clothesline. You might think one is enough, it’s not, so save yourself a trip back to the store and grab 2! I also grabbed one spool of neon coral cord, which is in the same section as the clothesline and chain and stuff.I wanted the legs to be a bit fancy, but I couldn’t figure out how to cut the angle on my miter saw for the life of me, so I measured 5″ up each 16″ leg, then 3/4″ in on the bottom, and cut along this line using my jig saw (see pic below). I followed this step with a light sanding. Next, and this is where I truly show my lack of woodsmithing skills, I clamped the 16″ legs and 14″ side pieces to my dining table (LOL right?) and drilled them together with wood screws. The correct way to do this would be to use a KregJig or some pocket-hole system, however I don’t have a KregJig, so I just screwed them together from the sides. I would also recommend filling these holes with stainable wood filler, which I obviously didn’t do because I forgot to buy some. I can only take so many trips back to the store for one project. So anyway, now that you know what not to do, here is what it looked like after I did those things! It actually came out quite sturdy. On to staining! Prior to staining raw wood, you always want to apply a wood conditioner. It prevents blochiness and helps the raw wood soak up the stain more evenly. Once the stain was completely dry, I went right on to weaving the clothesline over and under, back and forth, all the way along the bench. Just make sure you pull very tight! I tied the ends of the clothesline to one another by threading the clothesline that ended at right end of the bench back through to the starting side, if that makes sense. The knot fell somewhere in the middle of the bench. I LOVE IT! Really! Even though I fail at screwing wood together “properly”, I actually love how this bench turned out. Believe it or not, it does hold my weight! Although I didn’t make this for sitting, I’m showcasing this bench as our coffee table, since our living room has been sans coffee table since we moved in back in April! This bench would also look fab in front of a bed, under a window, or in an entryway! Love love love, all day long! What do you think? Oh, and please ignore the carpet. Just pretend its gorgeous hardwood laid in an impractical chevron pattern.