Oh my word, several days of building, sanding, staining, poly-ing, nailing, sawing, spackling, painting, and caulking – oh the caulking! – later, we have a finished table and banquette!  Wanna see?  Wanna see?!

I was going to wait to post pictures until we figured out the chair situation.  And we had it all staged and decorated perfectly.  But this is real life.  And Christmas time.  Throw pillows and place settings can wait.  Ha!  Introducing: our new dining area that I couldn’t love more even if it was a human child:

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-and-table-diyBead board, glossy white trim work, a bench ready to be storage for awesome things, upholstery, and THAT TABLE.

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-diy-6I am so pleased with how everything turned out.  The banquette really is a statement in our dining area.  I mean, you can’t miss it.  The bench alone is six feet long.


You know when I was all, the hard part is done!  Now just some quick painting, spackling, and caulking!?  Um, no.  Not quick.  It was laborious.  And caulking?  Caulking, you are not my friend.  And those beadboard panels soaked up the paint like they had lived their whole lives in  a dessert.

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-diy-4But two coats of primer and three coats of paint later, I couldn’t be happier.  All the work was worth it!  Even if this project turned into one of those “if you give a mouse a cookie” moments.  With this white trim gloriousness, all the unhappy wood trim in our house started calling out to me.  And I may or may not have tackled a couple windows’ worth of trim in our living room.  I mean, if you’re already caulking, you might as well caulk your heart out.

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-diy-5We still need to pick up some white outlets and outlet covers.  The previous outlet covers were mirrored.  Classy.


BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-diy-1I’m so happy with the fabric we went with.  Up close it has a lot of pattern going on, but from farther back it reads as a neutral.  It’s just begging us to load it up with colorful pillows.  It was my very first upholstery project.  I would definitely not recommend upholstering a six foot bench on your first try!  There are some wrinkles and sags, but a few pillows will cover that right up.

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-diyIgnore the floppy fabric just hanging out on the inside.  The plan is to put some trim around it so it looks finished.  And paint the inside of the bench.  But no one has time for that.  Ha!  My dad being the genius he is, rigged the lid up so we only have to unscrew the seat from those two long boards near the hinge.  Those two boards are connected to the piano hinge.  So we don’t have to unscrew fifty billion hinge screws every time we want to recover the bench. See?  He’s a genius.

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-and-table-DIY-3Then we get to the table.  Which is the real star of the show.  In my humble opinion of course.  I’m just so proud of it and can’t believe we built it!

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-and-table-DIY-6I used an espresso stain and then five coats of polyurethane.  I was afraid that the poly would make the table feel too glossy and would take away from the whole rustic feel, but it worked out really well.  I used a semi-gloss water-based poly and put on several light coats.  The table is smooth to the touch, but not glossy.  Hoo to the ray!

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-and-table-DIY-5I chose not to use wood conditioner before staining because I wanted to make sure all the imperfections of the wood came through.  Oh, and a teeny tiny paint brush (like the kind you used when painting as a kid) was super helpful to get in between the planks of the table.


BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-and-table-diy-2The legs of the table were my dad’s idea.  Again with the genius.  The inspiration for our table had two large solid legs at each end.  My dad changed it up by using 2×6 pieces of wood and staggering them.  Randomly.  For the first leg he had me arrange the boards to look random.  My “random” took like 10 minutes.  So he took it over from there.  He just randomly stuck all the boards together for the rest of the legs.  Random is harder than it looks.

We also added a center support beam for the table to keep it from being wobbly.

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-and-table-DIY-4It was hard to get great pictures of the entire table in our dining room.  I would have taken pictures of the finished table outside, but we had to take it apart to get through our door.  So yeah, this table is going nowhere anytime soon.

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-and-table-DIY-And I just had to include a detail shot of one of my favorite parts of the table.  See those little cream spots?  I didn’t even notice them before I started staining, but the stain made them just pop.  Apparently they’re sap spots?  Prettiest sap spots I ever did see.  (Insert the emoji with the hearts flying out of her eyes here. And the heart with the arrow.  Ha!)

BECOMING-WHITNEY-banquette-and-table-diySo this is where we are today.  (Actually, we’re a bit further along – our chairs should arrive today!  Eeeeek!)  The mouse with the cookie is already going wild, ready to update the rest of the area.  In this space we would still like to move the sad chandelier centered over nothing.  The plan is to move the chandelier into our room and then hang two pendant lights over the table.  Then we need to paint the rest of the trim white, replace the cream outlets and switches with white ones, paint the grungy ceiling, paint the front door, and get rid of that divider thing by the front door.  I have tried to make my peace with it, but alas, there is no peace to be had.  It’s gotta go.  Then of course, is accessorizing.  We need lots of throw pillows, a table runner, chairs, some sort of art or garland on the banquette wall, and a rug.  And while I’m listing all this, we might as well include hardwood floors.  Oh, dreams they abound.

All in all, this whole banquette and table situation cost around $300.  You can’t even buy a smaller table for that, let alone one that seats 8!  And a wall of trim work and a bench!  I’ve already had a few questions about the details of how we built the table, so if you have any questions be sure and put them in the comments.  I will answer them will ask my dad to answer them in a coming post.  And let me just mention again – how awesome is my dad?  This wouldn’t have been possible without him.  He made my dreams come true.


*UPDATE* Our chairs came in and we are loving them!  You can check out this post to see them.

On December 13, 2013 · 10 Comments · In DIY, Home

10 Responses to It is Finished!

  1. Gillian says:

    Oh my goodness, Whitney, this is incredible! The space looks beautiful and I am absolutely in awe of that table. And the bench that doubles as storage! It’s all so classy and functional. Love it!

  2. Amy Cannon says:

    Completely in love!! You guys did a great job! I’m about ready to chunk my parents old table so then I’d HAVE to build a new one. :)

  3. Linda says:

    You have done a beautiful job. It is so satisfying when your mental picture becomes a reality, isn’t it? I can’t wait to see a post of the accessorized area.

    • Whitney says:

      Thank you so much, Linda! I updated the post with a link to to one with pictures of our chairs and a few accessories. It’s slowly but surely coming along! :)

  4. Oh my goodness! I love how this turned out for an indoor table. Love. Love. Love. I also love the stain you chose. Did the plans work okay?

  5. Heather says:

    I LoVe it all!! Great job! The table is so unique with those legs. I want one now!

  6. [...] to focus my decorating on one big statement piece, and then do touches here and there.  Our newly built banquette was just begging for me to put some flowers on it.  And since I try to keep the girly to a minimum [...]

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