Make a Bench with Built-in Storage

Make a nursery bench:storage with one sheet of plywoodI made this bench the other day for IQ's (our daughter) room. It doubles as storage, which is great, because that kid has more stuff than I do. You could make this for pretty much any room in your house, or even an outdoor space (maybe when it warms up again).

Supplies:
-4' x 8' sheet of 3/4" hardwood ply (I used 3/4" particle board just because I never had before. I wanted to try it out, but if I were to do it again, I'd just use plywood.)

-4' x 8'  sheet of 1/8" DPI board (optional, if you want the bench/storage to have sliding doors)
-wood glue

Tools:
-table saw

-miter saw
-nailer
-pocket hole jig
-drill
-measuring tape
-pencil

Storage-bench-diagram--

Step One: The first thing I did was cut out all of the material. I wanted to challenge myself to make the bench from one sheet of material. See diagram above for the cut list.

Make a nursery bench-storage with one sheet of plywood  Step Two: After I had all the pieces cut, it was time to do a bit of pocket hole drilling. All of the B pieces needed to have holes drilled on both top and bottom sides (refer to diagram above). The D pieces just needed holes for the bottom. I made the sides half pieces so that even with the doors closed, Imogen could take toys out of the sides or (fingers crossed) put them away. I'm sure that day is a couple months away.

Make a nursery bench-storage with one sheet of plywood  Step Three: Once the holes were all drilled, it was time to assemble. I measured and marked out where each piece went. Each piece was about 9" apart from each other. From there, I just worked my way down, gluing and screwing. I wanted the storage to have sliding doors, so I cut a notch out of the upper piece corner, which was about 1/4" x 1/4". Once that was done, I attached it to the top of the benchMake a nursery bench-storage with one sheet of plywood        Make a nursery bench-storage with one sheet of plywood
Step Four: After the top was attached, the back was cut and attached; I cut out the doors and placed them in the opening. Then I nailed on all of the surround strips, which kept the doors in place and gave the overall piece a bit more detail. I drilled out a couple of finger holes and was done! Or so I thought. I liked the brown color, dang it! But Sarah had other plans. I ended up painting it gloss white, which looks good too. 😉 The particle board needed three coats to start looking halfway decent (another reason I'll never use particle board again, but at least I know now!).

I hauled the thing upstairs (I'm just looking to kill my back again), and it looks pretty dang good!

Make a nursery bench-storage with one sheet of plywood  Make a nursery bench-storage with one sheet of plywood  Make a nursery bench-storage with one sheet of plywood  What do you think? Do you have a space this might work in? -Josh

Credits // Author: Joshua Rhodes. Photography: Sarah Rhodes. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.