Maximize your storage space by turning a window bench seat into a useful storage compartment.
Anyone with a small room knows that optimizing storage space is high priority. After all, no one wants to spend their days tripping over toys and everything else that ends up on the floor. Organization is ideal when everything has a place. But where can you find extra storage in a space that is already limited? Maximize your organization by creating a window seat with storage, both stylish and functional.
How to Create a DIY Window Seat as a Storage Bench
Optimizing storage in a built-in window seat is the perfect way to gain space without losing square footage in a small bedroom. Not all homes have their own window seat, but if you do this is a great option for a storage bench.
Optional Supplies and Power Tools
- Measuring tape
- Drill bit
- Particle board for bottom
- Particle board or ¾ inch sheets of plywood for sides and back
- Wood filler
- Miter saw for angled cuts
- Table saw to rip wood pieces
- Nail gun
- MDF or wood for lid
- Wood trim along top edges
- Paint brush or sprayer
Before demolishing the current window seat, you want to find out if it is hollow and usable for storage. An easy way to do this is to take a drill and drill bit, make a few holes in the top or front of the bench to see if it is hollow. If the space is hollow, this can be demolished and built into a useful storage space.
Remove the top piece of plywood and any wood pieces that you don't need or are damaged. Clean out debris to make sure you have a nice empty space.
Add Insulation, Bottom Board and Seal
Once your compartment is all cleaned out, you will want to add insulation before putting in the bottom piece. Then you will most likely need to remove the cross beam to get the wood inside and flush. Measure a piece of particle board and install as the base, screwing or nailing into the wall studs.
Make sure that single piece of particle board is secured tightly with a good fit. Then caulk all of the edges to ensure a good seal so no bugs or critters can find their way in.
Install Back Wall and Side Pieces
After your base is installed, the side walls and back can be nailed in. Depending on what you plan to store in your DIY project may alter the type of wood you use. You can use particle board or plywood sheets for additional cost. We used particle board on the bottom for easy toy storage but opted to a heavier wood on the sides. If you are planning on heavy use, you might want to switch to a plywood.
Use a nail gun to secure the wood pieces on the front of the frame, sides and back of the frame.
Replace Cross Bar
Add the cross bar back inside once all of the interior wood is in place. One of the main reasons for the cross bar is to support the lid of the bench top. You want all the vertical supports in there to be good and snug.
Add Trim Pieces to DIY Window Seat
Using additional wood along the top edge is the best thing to hide the existing 2x4s for your window seat build. It is also helpful to cover any rough edges of drywall.
Caulk and Seal Window Seat with Storage
When all of your wood is in place, use caulk around all of the edging to seal everything in and give it a polished look. You will also want to use wood putty or another wood filler to fill in all of the nail holes. Use a high grit sandpaper to then lightly sand the nail holes for a really smooth finish.
Create the Top of the New Bench
For the top of the window seat, we were able to salvage an existing piece of MDF from the bench and reuse it for our top. If this is possible to do with your seating area, then that is a good option. If not, you can also get additional product to make a simple top to cover your bench.
We ended up cutting off two inches on each side so that the top doesn't rub against the wall when opening the lid. You will also want to add a hinge for easy opening - we used a 4 ft hinge.
The final step is to paint! Paint the inside and outside of your storage area the same color as your moldings.
And there you have a beautiful finished product. This DIY window seat with storage is a great spot to store toys. As an added bonus, no need to look at the mess!
You can also turn this window seat storage area into a comfortable window seat by adding cushions and use it as a reading nook in a bedroom or living room. Or use it in the kitchen as a breakfast nook and kitchen storage.
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