Sunday DIY Project: Upholstered Storage Bench!

The best kind of craft projects are things that you have fun making, that look pretty when they’re finished, AND actually serve a practical purpose.  The holy trinity!

Rewind to Christmas – I got Adam a record player as one of his presents.  Music is a big part of both of our lives, and we both had inherited our parents’ record collections but had no way to play them.  And ever since Christmas, the records had been sitting on our dining room floor in musty, decomposing cardboard boxes.  So I started looking up vinyl storage options online.  I kept seeing posts that mentioned that the Expedit bookcase from Ikea had openings that were the perfect size for holding records.  And then I came across this blog post where a woman turned the Expedit bookcase into an upholstered storage bench for her kids’ playroom.  And our next project was born!

First things first – we had to get the bookcase itself.  We visited the New Haven Ikea on a weekend trip to see my parents in Connecticut, and I eagerly put it together the next day.  I have this weird quirk where I really really really enjoy assembling furniture.


photo (7)

After: We already knew where in our living room it was going to go, against the wall in the corner, in front of a door that no, doesn’t open (it’s for the other apartment in the house).  And bingo – neater vinyl storage in the living room!

photo (8)

My dad had cut us a piece of plywood the size of the top, so our next task was to find fabric to make a cushion.  JoAnn Fabrics was having a sale on upholstery/home decor fabrics, so off we went.  Adam and I had recently decided that we’re obsessed with robin’s egg blue, and that the coffee table in our living room awaiting refinishing was going to be sanded down and painted robin’s egg blue, and then lightly distressed.  With that in mind, we wanted to find a fabric that incorporated that shade of blue (we brought a paint swatch!) along with other colors, to continue our quest of bringing more color into our apartment. This was what we found – and bought!

photo (9)

So with our fabric, the plywood from my dad, a cheap foam mattress topper from Walmart (2-inch foam at JoAnn Fabrics is prohibitively expensive – a mattress topper cut in half with an electric knife and glued together with spray adhesive works just as well!), and the nifty new staple gun I got for my birthday, we were in business!  Below behold the finished product!  We LOVE it.

IMG_2206 IMG_2207 IMG_2209