Built-In Banquette Tutorial

16 Materials
2 Weeks
We had a lonely wall in our kitchen that could really use something special. So, we decided to build a banquette and have it span the whole wall. It totally transformed the space.
It was a simple build and really could be accomplished over the course of two weekends. We drug it on (like usual) but if you really go on it.. then you could definitely have it completed over the course of the two weekends.
*More pictures of each step can be found on my blog.
DIY Banquette in Kitchen
*Also, you can save wood by building your bench to the wall and getting rid of the back supports. We plan on replacing the flooring so we wanted our built-in to be moveable. But, you could definitely save money and time by attaching the back to the wall. =)
Step One: Gather Your Supplies
NOTE: These measurements are what worked for our kitchen. Sizes will vary.
(4) 12ft 24's
(2) 8ft 24's
(2) Sanded/Finished Plywood pieces cut to 62 x 24.5
2 Wood Screws
Miter Saw
Circular Saw
Tape Measure
Kreg Jig and Screws
3/4 Particle Board 24 x 133.5
Air Compressor and Nail Gun (We have this set from Home Depot and it's been great)
Wood Glue
Primer and Paint
Foam (Best price ever on foam!)
Step 2: Cut 2x4 Frame
Measure your wall. If you do not have a bump out or any irregularities, then cut (4) 2x4's to 1 inch shorter than your wall length. *We have a bump out so our back pieces (2) were cut to 123 (1 inch shorter than our wall of 124 inches) and our front 2 pieces were cut to 133.5 inches (about one foot shorter than the front span of the area).
Step 3: Cut Upright and Bottom Supports
First things first, decide what height you want your bench to be and make sure to account for wood and foam. If you have a table and chairs and like the chair height (our chairs were 18.5 inches) then take the chair height and use that height to start with.
Our measurements were: 2x4 (actually 3.5 inches) + 9.5 inches (24 supports) + 2x4 (3.5 inches) + 3/4 inch particle board + Batting + 3 inch foam.
Our bench height ended up being 20.5 inches.
We cut 12 (six for the front and six for the back) 2x4 supports at 9.5 inches. We cut 6 floor supports at 20.5 inches.
Step 4: Attach Supports
Attach your floor supports first. You can drill in from the long 2x4's on each side to make this easy. We eye-balled the spacing.
On each of your upright supports, use the Kreg jig to make holes to attach the screws on the support to the bottom 2x4. It's also good to use wood glue on these because the slanted screws (from the Kreg jig are not as strong as vertical screws would be).
On the 2x4's that span the wall, mark where your upright 2x4's hit and use the Kreg jig and wood glue again to attach the 2x4's together (More Photos on my blog for this step).
Once you've attached the bottom 2x4 to the upright supports and then the top 2x4, this step is completed.
Step 5: Cut Top Supports and Attach
Cut 6 more 2x4 supports at 20.5 inches. Attach with Kreg jig and wood glue. Screw into the supports from the outside on both sides. Again, we eye-balled the placement but it was very similar to the flooring supports.
Step 6: Measure the Top and Have it Cut
Most hardware stores will cut wood for you. We measured for the top (it was 24 inches by 167) and had the particle board piece cut in-store. Attach by drilling wood screws down into the frame.
Step 7: Troubleshoot any Issues
Once the top piece was on, we still had to troubleshoot the bump out piece. Luke made a cardboard template of the space and then used a jig saw to cut it out of the particle board.
We placed a few screws in the particle board to attach it firmly to the 2x4 frame.
Step 8: Upholster
We placed the foam down first and then used the cardboard template from step 7 to get the foam piece for the bump-out.
Lay the batting over the foam and staple.
Trim up any excess batting.
Lay the fabric over the batting and staple (making sure to pull tightly as you go along).
Step 9: Finish Front and Sides
Using 1/4 inch plywood, cut it to size for the front and side panel. Prime and paint. Attach to the front and sides with a nail gun.
Fill any nail holes with nail filler, let dry, sand and paint.
We choose to stop here but from here you could trim out the piece to make it more substantial.
I really love how it turned out and it's so functional. If I could change one thing, it might have been to go with a little better quality front/sides. When the sun is in full-force in our kitchen, you can see variations in the paint. But, really that's being super picky. Otherwise, I really adore it.

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 27 questions
  • Monique Monique on Jul 06, 2019

    Why does the before & after picture look like the bench is in a totally different room????

  • Pam-ella Pam-ella on Jul 06, 2019

    Somewhere in that process you put shiplap on the wall too? Beautiful project!

  • Evelyn Evelyn on Jul 07, 2019

    Are planing to create so storages (basques) under the bench??


Join the conversation

2 of 141 comments
  • Linda Deimer Wittich Linda Deimer Wittich on Feb 02, 2019

    good job i love it want to build a smaller one at our houseboat and also you have inspired me to paint my doors dark gray like yours,,,,,,

  • Bcfatbroad Bcfatbroad on Jul 06, 2019

    If you are really bumed out by the variations in the paint then just take feather duster and touch up paint with another color. to give it a second color blend.