All it takes is three rickety old chairs, a screwdriver, a salvaged plank, and some wood glue to make this charming bench, perfect for a mudroom or foyer.



Step 1:

Unscrew the seats from the chairbacks and armatures and set aside. Save the screws.



Step 2:

Line up the chairs side by side, with a few inches between each. Measure the distance fromone end of the row to the other, and add four inches to that number. Then measure the depth (from front to back) of one of the seats you just removed. Cut a wood plank with those dimensions (we used a 1 1/4-inch-thick, 15- by 58-inch plank here), and sand or miter its edges — or ask someone at your local lumberyard to do it for you. Paint or stain the plank as desired.



Step 3:

Once the plank has dried, place it atop the chairs, center it, and use a pencil to mark where it meets the screw holes in the armatures and the backs of the chairs. (Keep in mind that chairs can age unevenly, so this may require some fiddling.) Remove the plank and drill small pilot holes at each marked point. Put the plank back on top of the chairs, align the pilot holes, and mark where each front chair leg meets the underside of the plank, tracing all the way around the tip of the leg (known as the dowel). Remove the plank. Then, using a drill bit that corresponds to the size of the dowel, bore a 1/2-inch-deep indentation within your pencil marking, being careful not to drill all the way through the plank.



Step 4:

Apply wood glue to the dowels, position the plank atop the chairs again, and press the bored holes down on the dowels. Screw the back of the plank to the chair backs — and reattach the armatures — with the screws you removed earlier. Place a weight on the plank and let dry overnight; then sit back and relax.

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