After purchasing our home back in 2016, I couldn’t wait to hit the ground running with updating the interior of our home. Everything inside was original, from when the house was built in the 86. While the 80’s was a rad decade for music and fashion, in my opinion, 80’s interior design could be erased from our design history books! Just kidding, because I think we can learn from ALL history (and ESPECIALLY learn things that we should not do or repeat).
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When it came to renovations we had to do a lot. We de-popcorned ceilings, painted everything, re-stained wood, put in new flooring, and got new railing. All that on top of just buying the house adds up quickly, so when it came to furnishing our house, I did not want to jump into spending top dollar for new pieces of furniture.
I also just love the process of finding something old and bringing new life into something someone else thought was a piece of junk. For instance, I bought our dining table for ONLY $40, sanded, and re-stained it, and it looks great! It is perfect for now, and I know one day when I want to get something new for the space I’ll be able to make a little bit of money off the old piece.
Speaking of dining tables, I absolutely LOVE live slab dining tables and love adding elements of natural wood to rooms to add interest and warmth. They also just look really cool! In lieu of buying a live slab dining table, I thought it would be fun to DIY one, but on a bit of a smaller scale. It was such an easy project. You can see how it turned out below!
When looking for something random like a slab of wood, I always start online with eBay. I found the perfect live edge redwood slab that was rectangular, like a bench. I searched for a rectangular shape because I wanted more versatility with the piece I was making.
Initially I thought that I could use it as a coffee table in our den, but it ended up being too long to fit with the sectional that we purchased for the space. I ended up putting it in our entryway in a little angled area and it fit there perfectly! We don’t have a mudroom, so it’s a great little spot to sit to take our shoes on and off.
To match the burn marks in the redwood and to add a touch of modern to the bench, I decided to add some iron legs. I searched for some iron double hairpin legs because I thought some retro elements would match the vibe in our house, and also tie into the iron railing that we had installed as well. The iron, hairpin legs kept the project very simple as well.
To start, you need:
- Live Edge Wood Slab
- Iron Double Hairpin Legs (4)
- Sander with fine grit sandpaper (a couple grades)
- High Gloss Polyurethane protective finish (and paint brush to apply)
- Screws to attach your legs (12). Match size based on size of holes on hairpin legs and the thickness of your wood.
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WHAT TO DO
After gathering all the supplies for the project, start out by lightly sanding the live edge slab (being careful to not over-sand it and remove all the cool burn marks). My piece of redwood had already been put through a sander before it was shipped, so there wasn’t too much work that I needed to do there.
Once you’re finished sanding, wipe down the wood with a wet rag to remove all the fine dust and let it dry. Next, apply the high gloss, polyurethane with a paint brush. Be careful when applying your protective finish so you don’t get bubbles in the polyurethane. Use smooth, long strokes when applying (don’t go back and forth a lot or it might cloud up your gloss and add those bubbles you don’t want in there).
Apply 2 good coats letting it dry fully in between each coat. Waiting for the polyurethane to dry was probably the hardest part of this project because I was too excited about the bench, and wanted to get to the end to see the finished product!
After everything is dry you can apply your hairpin legs! I flipped the wood onto the wrong/bottom side and just spaced the legs out to where I thought they would look best. Once the legs are spaced out evenly, with one in each corner (or wherever you want to put them depending on the shape of your slab), I made a mark with a sharpie where I would be screwing the legs into the wood.
Once you have your marks you can get your drill out and drill holes into the wood so the screws go in easily! I just found screws from Home Depot that looked like a good fit for the size of the holes on the leg-plate. Once the holes are drilled, line the plates back up to them so you can screw in your screws. Repeat for each leg on your bench, flip it over, and ta-da! You have yourself a one of a kind piece of live-edge furniture.
All the before pictures were actually taken during the renovation process and long before I actually started blogging (although I took the before pictures because I always thought that maybe one day I’d start a blog!). I neglected to take good step by step pictures, but the process is so simple, I think you get the picture.
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