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Benches Bookcase

Martha Stewart Living, September 2006

If all the bookshelves you find in stores are too tall, too wide, or too unwieldy, consider stacking sturdy wooden benches to make a streamlined shelf that's just right for your space. Ours is made from three benches; two would work as well, but don't stack more than four. Paint the benches (we used a latex semigloss paint) to suit your decor. To assemble, stack 2 benches. On the front of each leg of the top bench, drill a 45-degree hole (centered 1 inch up from the bottom of the leg) through the leg and partway through the top of the bench below. Use a long wood screw to attach the pieces (screw size will vary depending on the thickness of your bench legs). Repeat on back legs. Stack another bench on top (if desired), and repeat to attach. Fill and finish the holes.

Comments (21)

  • sheryl6348 9 May, 2012

    A great idea. would like to see a plan for the benches to build it yourself. i plan to use this idea in my bathroom. thanx.

  • amber78 19 May, 2010

    In trying to keep costs down, you might try searching for unfinished wood benches at various chain stores like Michaels or even WalMart ... or search locally for smaller, independent stores carrying unfinished wood products, though you may find more expensive pieces that way.

  • rock63roll64 17 May, 2010


  • Saromat 14 May, 2010

    Any suggestions on where to purchase the benches - other than craft shows? Thanks!

  • mylacelady 14 May, 2010

    Wait till this summer, the craft shows usually have a booth of wood items very resonable. Then paint the color you desire.

  • GabbyCal 14 May, 2010

    I too am on the hunt for this style of bench at a reasonable price. Where did these come from and what do they cost?

  • Saromat 11 Mar, 2010

    I, too, would like to find benches appropriate for this bookcase. I've seen similar ones at Pottery Barn, but would love to find some less expensive options. Any suggestions?

  • danielletriplett 3 Mar, 2010

    Love to hear where people find beches like this. Please share!

  • Susanha 3 Mar, 2010

    Some of us have MOT seen them before and find them very helpful

  • maryjangel 3 Mar, 2010

    yes, Martha's crafts are becoming like television re-runs, while still entertaining we've seen them before.

  • maryjangel 3 Mar, 2010

    yes, Martha's crafts are becoming like television re-runs, while still entertaining we've seen them before.

  • sosolisalisa 3 Mar, 2010

    this is a great idea!

  • charliegirl20 3 Mar, 2010

    Where can I purchase benches like this?

  • Jugtree 3 Mar, 2010

    "From Martha Stewart Living, September 2006", posted today, Mar 3, 2010 and previously shared inbetween via MS's daily ideas.

    We need to get some more original ideas out of the MS camp, please

  • arembee 3 Mar, 2010

    Instead of drilling and screwing through the legs from top down; try doing same from bottom up into legs. In this way you won't have to fill holes in legs.

  • AlexaSocialite 27 Aug, 2009

    I love this! I wish I had some cute benches like that!

  • JudyPatoodie 26 Aug, 2009

    I love this idea too. It would even be cute with a longer one on the bottom and cascade upwards with shorter benches, so it resembles a triangle (sort of ).

  • pamelamay 26 Aug, 2009

    For those of us living in earthquake country, they need to be secured to each other and to the wall for safety.

  • kaseremak 26 Aug, 2009

    What a lovely idea! I will pass this along to my mother-in-law for sure!

  • belovedofgd 26 Aug, 2009

    not if you drill them together ......

  • brutuses 7 May, 2009

    This is great because you can pull them down and use them when you need extra seating.