3 In Decor/ DIY

DIY Midcentury Dining Bench

diy dining bench

It’s Sunday Funday! Who’s ready to get their DIY on? Today I’m sharing how to make an easy hairpin leg dining bench! If you follow @notesofnostalgia on Insta you might have seen this gorgeous vintage midcentury modern dining table I got recently.

The dining room in our house is more like a nook because it’s so small. And it’s right next to the kitchen. Maybe it’s more of a breakfast nook? Anyways, it’s small and I knew when we moved in that wanted to eventually swap out our large hand-me-down table for a smaller table with a bench to maximize space.

dining room makeover

dining room before


Lately, my house has become more eclectic with my recent midcentury kick, so these two dining nooks from Kristina Lifors and Jessie Artigue of Style & Pepper became the inspo for my redesign.

Kristina Lifors midcentury modern dining nook eclectic dining room Camille Styles

I tracked down the expandable, walnut dining table (top photo) at Red Snapper Vintage in Portland. Buying adult furniture is the best feeling! A table like this is a great investment because it can grow with us into a larger house some day. For seating, I found a pair of coastal chairs that matched perfectly at City Liquidators and a tutorial for an upholstered bench like Jessie’s on Home Polish.

I got most of my supplies from Home Depot and Amazon, including these heavy duty hairpin legs from Industrial by Design. For my fabric, I headed to a local Portland fabric shop the Mill End Store, which was basically a mini Mood.


I got this classic blue tweed, that will pair perfectly with all of the throw pillows.

upholstered bench fabric

This upholstered bench was super easy to make and ended up costing me about $150 for all of my supplies! I ended up having double of everything but the legs, so I’m planning on making a second one for the shorter wall. I adapted Home Polish’s how to a little bit and it only took me about 2 hours to assemble. Here’s how I made my DIY dining bench:

Suppliesdiy upholstered bench supplies

  • 4- 16″ hairpin legs
  • 2″ x 12″ x 96″ wood (or whatever size you want- I got mine cut to 60″ long)
  • 2 yards of fabric (or enough to wrap around your bench plus a few inches)
  • high-density foam padding (at least 2″ thick)
  • staple gun
  • drill
  • #12 wood screws
  • all-purpose spray glue
  • sandpaper
  • scissors
  • Sharpie

How to Build Your Dining Bench

1. Sand Wood

how to make a wood bench

Give your wood a light sanding, especially around the edges to get rid of any pieces sticking out. Keep those splinters at bay!

2. Cut Foam Padding

foam padding for cushioned bench

Lay your wood on top of your foam, and trace along the edge so that you know where to trim your foam. Then use a pair of scissors to cut. (Tip: I was told to go get mine cut or use an x-acto knife, but the scissors worked fine! The x-acto knife was hard to cut straight with.)

3. Glue Foam to Wood

spray foam to wood for cushioned bench

Lay down some towels or newspaper, and spray lots of glue to your wood. Then lay your foam on top and push it down so it sticks to the wood. Don’t worry about waiting for it to dry for the next step.

4. Cut Fabric

fabric covered bench DIY

Lay your fabric on top of your wood and make sure to leave enough so that a couple of inches wraps around on the other side. Trim off the excess. (Tip: pick a thicker upholstery fabric and make sure to keep in mind that food and/or wine will inevitably spill on it.)

5. Wrap and Staple Fabric

upholstered bench diy

Center your wood on top of the fabric, fold the fabric over one side and staple it into the wood. Space your staples about an inch apart and an inch from the edge. Pull the fabric taught on the opposite side and secure with a staple gun.

staple gun fabric bench

Do the ends last, and fold them like you’re wrapping a present. Try to match up the fold with the edge of the wood.

fabric covered bench how to

Make sure to staple the fabric ends well so that they don’t hang down when you flip the bench over.

dining nook bench diy

6. Measure Hairpin Legs

industrial by design hairpin legs 16

Lay your hairpin legs on your wood and space evenly about 3″ from the edge. Then mark where the holes are with a Sharpie.

7. Drill in Legs

how to drill hairpin legs

Drill holes into the wood where you made your marks. Next, line up the hairpin legs and drill or screw in your wood screws.

install hairpin legs

Now flip over your bench and admire your handy work! You built furniture! Now you’re basically Ron Swanson.

hairpin legs Industrial Design midcentury modern dining room

I’m IN LOVE with my hairpin dining bench! It pairs so well with my midcentury table and chairs and can easily fit three people comfortably. I can’t wait to do all of the entertaining now like an HGTV homeowner. Dinner parties here we come!

Who else has made some DIY furniture with hairpin legs?

DIY dining bench Pinterest

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  • Reply
    Michelle Flook
    February 5, 2018 at 11:04 am

    Love this!

  • Reply
    Ready Assembled Wardrobes
    February 8, 2018 at 10:38 pm

    This is really beautiful. I liked this DIY midcentury dining bench. Thanks for sharing its tutorial.

    • Reply
      February 22, 2018 at 8:28 pm

      Thanks so much, my pleasure! Hope to see others try it out 🙂

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