I've had many requests since last summer to do an easy Ikea bench tutorial since I shared about our new benches in our flexible seating classroom. It was fairly simple and a favorite spot in our classroom all year. Oftentimes, I'd even find myself sitting there while my students were giving presentations or during the time my student teacher took over.
There are plenty of things you need to make your own benches. Some things you'll have lying around your house and some things you'll need to run to the store for.
You'll need to get the Kallax shelf unit from Ikea. I purchased two last summer in white, however they come in many different colors. The dimensions are 16 1/2×57 7/8″
I was nervous about picking out fabric for our Ikea benches because I didn't want it to get dirty. But then I thought to myself, “This is for 7 year olds, of course it will get dirty.” I gave the nice lady at Hobby Lobby my dimensions (The dimensions are 16 1/2×57 7/8″) of the shelf and she suggested 2 1/2 yards of fabric per bench.
Remember when I was freaking out about the fabric getting dirty? Well, then you just get this plastic fabric stuff. It was inexpensive and well worth it because on the first day of school, one of my sweet friends thought it would be fun to poke a hole in the bench cushion to see what would happen! The dimensions for the plastic will be the same as your fabric above!
I got the thickest poly foam and wasn't thrilled on the price. It was 37.00 for this package…but if you have a 40% off coupon online, it's cheaper. I am paid a small fee from Amazon for sharing these awesome resources with you! Or, you can get it here and not have to leave your house! One package was enough for 2 benches and we had some leftover as well.
I went to Lowe's to pick out the wood that I needed. They call it MDF board and all I did was told the nice man what I was making, and he showed me the wood and even cut it to my exact dimensions! Remember, the dimensions are 16 1/2×57 7/8″. You only need once piece per bench.
Materials from around the house
- Electric kitchen knife or a really sharp knife to cut the foam
- A good staple gun
- Velcro strip, not dots
Easy Ikea Bench Tutorial
Cut the foam to fit the wood and bench. I was lucky enough to have my mother and sister-in-law for this project so they cut the foam. We didn't have an electric knife so we struggled with a regular knife. It worked but wasn't pretty!
Next, wrap your fabric around the foam and staple to the wood. My mother-in-law suggested using quilt batting but it looked fine without it.
Do the same thing with the plastic “fabric.”
Put the cushion on top of the bench and try it out. I found that it wiggled a bit so I had a ton of leftover velcro that I put under the wood cushion and attached to the bench to keep it in one place.
I hope you found this tutorial helpful! If you have any questions and wan't an immediate answer, join me i my Facebook group.