Saturday, April 30, 2011

Building our Potting Bench part II

to see how I have decorated this over the seasons just click HERE

To see the first segment click on the photo here:

 this is where we left off on the first part of our Potting Bench assembly, attaching the back.


After plenty of screws and glue we have this:


We decided we needed a middle cross piece to secure the top with so we added it:


He had to screw in the diagonal on the backside, it would’ve been easier if we would’ve remembered to put this piece on before the back boards but Mr. Builder here got it done anyways.

Time to check for square again. 

Time to put on the top pieces.  We needed to added a small fir strip to the back as I wanted the front to have a bit of a lip or you could call in an overhang.


More glue and lots of screws!


I have had these metal shelf brackets for a few years, I had ideas of using them in the greenhouse, then the studio but I just never did.  They are perfect for this bench!
I don’t know if you can tell but the design is hummingbirds and trumpet vine.


We attached the shelf to a 2 x 3 first and screwed it into the back boards, then added the brackets.  I washed up the dripping glue.


Now to the bottom shelf…we have to fit the boards around the legs..


We will use the scroll saw for that.


We did not have enough of the cedar fence boards for the bottom shelf so we used some pine we had on hand. Since I will be painting this potting bench it will all match in the end.


And that is the end for now.  Other than us trying to man handle it up those steps you see behind it and around to the back deck.  This thing is HEAVY!  Thank goodness we have a dolly. 


As I said before this project took us about 3 hours but that is because Mr. Builder here knows what he is doing.  If it was just me building it, I can promise you it would've taken WAAAAY longer!

I will be posting photos of it again once I have it painted and decorated.  This will come in handy this summer when we entertain on the back deck.  It can serve as a drink bar or a buffet. 

Next I will be sure to post that recipe I promised.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

potting bench10Click the photo to see how I have decorated it over the past two years, just for fun!

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The Lettered Cottage

Friday, April 29, 2011

How We Built our Potting Bench

Another sunny day but with such a strong wind that it was hard to enjoy it.  I needed to paint some signs but I ran out of chicken feed and the ladies were not going to wait!  So I wrote up a shopping list for groceries, pulled together the paperwork for a business bank account and warmed up the Suburban.  I like to group errands if I have to run and make the most of my gas $$$.  While I was running my errands I stopped in at a thrift store for the hey of it.  If I was hunting for some furniture to paint I would’ve scored, they had a nice dresser, side table and some dining chairs that would’ve dressed up real nice with some paint, and they were priced very reasonably. 

As promised I have the photo step by step of building our potting bench ready to view.  We do not include a plan or pattern as we determined size by the fence boards we used on the back, but if you wish for plans try finding something similar at  You can get the basics there and then do like us, wing it!

First off we had purchased these fence boards at Home Depot a couple weeks ago.


Sorry for the shadows, we were in a bad spot but it was the only one we could work in.  We lined up the boards until we were satisfied with the width, then we took the measurement and built the base using that measurement.  We used 2 x 3’s for the frame.  We set them up in a dry run before fastening them together.


Predrill all the screw holes to prevent splitting.


Drill thru to the piece that your top piece will be attached to, it will help line up the screws.


Here is the first frame, now to build the lower part. It is the same steps so I will spare you the steps of that one.


We dry fit the legs, which were cut from 2 x 4’s.  We cut them an average table height.  You can make the potting bench any height you prefer or find comfortable.


Square them up with a Speed Square.

Hold them steady with a big foot as you screw the legs to the frame.

Now with all 4 legs attached and a nice base frame.


Up until now we have not used glue but we will use it to attach the fence boards for the back. Just a bit for added strength.


The clamps come in handy to keep these large unwieldy fence boards under control.


After attaching the first board we dry fit the rest and find that one board is quite bowed and will have to be clamped before attaching to line it up.


Finish attaching the rest of the fence boards.


Now that this post is becoming longwinded I shall stop here and add the rest to the next one.  This entire build took us about 3 hours.  Just so you know in case you want to try to build one yourself.

It looks as if the wind has died down finally, I think I will spend a quiet evening outside raking a bit.  The exercise will do me good.

Be sure to come back for the final assembly of the potting bench.


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