Playground to Sophisticated Garden Seating

3 Materials
7 Days

We have reached the point where the children no longer play on the extensive play equipment left by the previous owners of the property. The area the play equipment takes is about a 1/5 of our garden. We decided to take it down and reconfigure this part of the garden, with the aim of creating a seating area with fire pit

As my husband carefully dismantled the equipment we realised just how rotten the base pieces set into the ground are.

He carefully took out the screws and set aside for reusing.

With the area cleared and wood sorted by size it is time to plan the seating.

The project has to use the salvaged wood and have a minimum cost - we have no budget set for the garden. The size and measurements for this seating area are based on the salvaged wood, all the wood from the raised beds had to be cut down with a table saw to remove the rotten sections (it turned out the raised beds had no lining so the wood facing the soil inside the planter was rotten).

Start by building the base of the bench seat. You will need a good drill, countersink drill bit suitable for wood and super long screws. 

Create the back piece with three legs measuring 37 by 6 by 3″, screw them together with two cross pieces measuring 66″ by 4 by 2 3/4″.

Next create the front legs, these are 16 by 3 by 6″ with one cross piece measuring the same as the back cross pieces 66 by 4 by 2 3/4″.

Join the front and back legs together with four pieces of wood – two either side of the central leg and one each on the inside of the outer legs. These pieces measure 29 by 3 1/2 by 1 3/4″.

Now lets create the seat. We have pieces of wood measuring between 2 1/2 – 6″ wide, 25″ long and depth of 3″.

Then add the back panel pieces to form the back of the bench, these measure 18 1/2 in height.

To create the long side bench the same steps were repeated, this time with long joining pieces of 91″ in length, four legs, plus an additional fifth leg on the side so it can but up to the first bench.

The final step is to protect your hard work, we applied several coats of teak oil to preserve the wood.

I love the variations in tones of the wood – we are torn about creating cushions, part of me doesn’t want to hide the beautiful wood.

I couldn’t be more pleased with the transformation of old play equipment to stylish seating.

Overall the garden has been transformed with a pallet swing, three new flower beds - one with evergreen shrubs, one down with wild flowers and one at the back for growing corn on the cob.

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