DIY: How to Build a Rustic Bench

How to Build a Rustic Bench

Handmade furniture adds beauty and functionality to any home. Plus, a custom look is sure to impress friends and family.

This time of year, it’s convenient to have a bench next to the door of a mudroom or entryway for all that pulling on (or taking off) of winter boots, socks, hats and gloves.

And here’s the good news: you don’t have to be a master carpenter to build this simple, rustic bench! Just follow this step-by-step guide from Shanty to Chic based on the Providence Bench design by Ana White. It costs at little as $20-$50 and can be completed in one afternoon with the help of a handy Kreg Jig® tool (available at GNH)! A Kreg Jig® makes it easy for anyone, even a beginning DIYer, to create rock-solid wood projects and to make strong, long-lasting repairs.

Here’s what you’ll need to pick up at GNH Lumber to build your rustic bench:


  • 5 – 2×4 @ 8 feet long – cut longest boards first
  • Optional 1×3 under bench supports
  • 1 ¼ inch screws
  • 2 1/2-inch Pocket Hole Screws
  • Wood glue
  • Finish nails
  • 120 grit sandpaper
  • Wood filler
  • Wood conditioner or primer (as needed)
  • Damp cloth
  • Safety glasses


  • Tape Measure
  • Speed square
  • Kreg Jig®
  • Drill
  • Sander

Rustic Bench dimensions

Cut List (dimensions shown above):

  • 2 – 2×4 @ 14”
  • 4 – 2×4 @ 15 1/4″ – both ends beveled at 10 degrees off square, ends ARE parallel
  • 2 – 2×4 @ 12 1/2″ – long point to long point, both ends cut at 10 degrees off square, NOT parallel
  • 1 – 2×4 @ 34”
  • 1 – 2×4 @ 38”
  • 2 – 2×4 @ 13 3/8” (both ends cut at 45 degrees off square, ends ARE parallel)
  • 4 – 2×4 @ 54”


Build Ends on Rustic bench

Step 1) Build ends

Build two ends as shown above. They are identical. Use the Kreg Jig® on 1 1/2″ setting with 2 1/2″ pocket holes, or countersink screws with glue. Here’s are our suggestions for pocket hole placement.

This is the bottom inside of the legs:

Build Ends of Rustic Bench

This is the top of the legs:

Top of Rustic bench legs

2) Add the stretchers:

Rustic Bench stretchers

3) And then the cross supports:

Rustic Bench cross supports



4) Add the seat boards:

Rustic Bench seat boards

NOTE: Use the Kreg Jig® to plank the top of the bench before attaching it to the base.

You can leave a small 1/8″ gap between boards for water drainage if desired.

Add seat boards to rustic bench


This is the back of each of diagonal piece.  Tip: Don’t worry about covering the pocket holes if they will be facing a wall:

back of rustic bench

Attach bottom piece like this:

bottom piece of rustic bench

Use 1 1/4″ screws through the bottom into the top planks to attach the seat, and don’t forget to use wood glue on all joints:

rustic bench bottom

5) Finishing touches!

Finished rustic benchFill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed.

When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Sand all surfaces thoroughly. Vacuum to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

Use primer or wood conditioner as needed. It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. The bench shown has a coat of Rust-Oleum Ultimate Wood Stain in Dark Walnut.


That’s it!  This rustic, entryway bench is now ready to enjoy all season long! Questions about this project or another DIY-project on your list? Stop in to your local GNH Lumber for tips, guidance and recommendations!


Questions or concerns about your woodworking project?

Stop in to your local GNH Lumber! We’re always glad to offer guidance, tips or suggestions, or point you in the right direction for just the product needed to get the DIY project done.

Find a Store Request a Quote