Our new outdoor dining area needed some seating and I definitely wanted benches. They are cheaper than outfitting the whole table with chairs and give a lot of flexibility for how many people can be seated. Especially when lots of your guests are little ones, benches seem to stretch to hold as many seats as you need them to.
I may still find some chairs for the head and foot, but they will have to be just right. I do not like the headache of having linens or upholstery in outdoor spaces. I like the carefree and work-free attitude of totally outdoor safe furniture and decor.
Like when designing our table, Ana White’s blog of lots of free furniture plans was very helpful. I found the build plans for benches that would match up perfectly with our table. I recommend using her diagrams and instructions if you decide to make these, but I have included the materials and cut lists below.
TOOLS & MATERIALS
One 12 foot long 2×6
Two 8 foot long 2×4’s
2 and 1/2″ self-tapping screws
Under seat boards: three 10″ long 2×4’s
Legs: four 11″ long 2×4’s
Leg bases: two 13″ long 2×4’s
Seat boards: two 72″ long 2×6’s
Angled braces: two 30″ long (long point to long point) 2×4’s, both ends cut 22 and 1/2 degrees of square bevel
As I said above, I am big on outdoor stuff being very sturdy and weather resistant. No one wants their summer soirees dampened by mildewed linens or warped furniture and I am not up for the time commitment of transporting my outdoor materials inside overtime it rains.
To be weather ready, I covered the furniture with two coats of the same type of paint we used on the floor – Behr Porch & Floor paint in Polished Marble. Eating out here has been lovely. Now all I need to do is plan a party.