Reveal of the Salvaged Bench

This project took a bit longer than I anticipated, but I can finally show you the complete makeover of the bench I pulled out of the trash. Here’s a reminder of how it looked when I found it.

With the tear in the vinyl seat cushion cover I temporarily sealed it with packing tape to protect the foam cushion from the rain. That lasted a day while I was cleaning and sanding the bench.  Afterwards I dragged it inside to paint.

First up was painting the bench. I picked this  beach-y turquoise color.


Already it looked much better. Even though my house sits back from the street and the bench was on the deck passersby noticed it and came by to admire it. I had two offers to sell the bench before recovering the cushion and one since. It’s not for sale but it’s nice to know the bright paint catches attention.

Then it was time to work on the cushion.  The foam cushion covered a pressed wood board that was water damaged in one section.

I primed and painted the board before recovering it.  To prevent further damage from the elements I covered the foam and board with two tall kitchen garbage bags and sealed the seams between them with packing tape.  I used an indoor/outdoor fabric but that only means it won’t fade in the sunlight not that it’s waterproof. Here’s the underside of the cushion.

It wasn’t easy to get the packing tape to adhere to the painted wood but once I  had stapled the fabric in place the plastic was more secure.

The packing tape held securely to the plastic of the bags so I’m confident there won’t be any issues with mold forming in the foam from rain.  Finally, it was time to staple in place the new fabric and attach the cushion to the bench.

And a close up of the fabric.

I had crossed my fingers that the colors of the fabric would match the paint chosen for the bench. Online images aren’t always true to color but in this case it was exactly what I’d hoped for. You can see a bit of the bench at the top of the photo and see how well the turquoise in the fabric matches the paint.

While I’ve refused to sell the bench I have agreed to restore a bench should one woman find one and have a job lined up to make a set of curtains for a dining room for another person out of the same fabric. That’s a win-win for me. I have a bench for the deck I love and two jobs as a result of dressing my outdoor space.

One last time. The bench as I found it.

And the bench today.


It’s hard for me to imagine how the previous owner couldn’t see beyond the worn appearance to see what a gem she had.  I happened to pass by her house and saw a new wicker bench where this used to sit. Mine’s more colorful. 🙂



  1. Amazing. Simply amazing. Don’t be too hard on the previous owner for not seeing the porential in this bench. It takes a creative and talented eye to do what you do.


    • Thanks, Elaine. I should have reworded what I wrote. I was not trying to be hard on the previous owner I felt sad that she felt it was so awful that she needed to spend money on a new piece of furniture. I’m just so glad I went back and spotted the bench so it didn’t end up in the landfill. What a shame that would have been.


  2. Wow! Quite a transformation. So do you plan to leave it outside in all sorts of weather? Just wondering how the wood will hold up being exposed to the elements.


    • Thank you, Cat. No, the bench will only be outside in the warmer months. The cold of our winters would ruin the wood and the glue holding it all together. I’ll probably use it in the living room as more seating for the table I have in there in the winter.


  3. Love that fabric with the paint color. One of my favorites of your remakes. A while back, I did see the end table remade that I was interested in. However, my comment got lost and I never rewrote it. Thanks for that show and tell. It gave me some ideas for when I have time to redo some of our furniture.


    • I’m glad you saw the table. I didn’t see your comment in any of my folders, don’t you hate when a comment gets lost after you take the time to type it out? I do.


  4. Beautiful. Perfect match too.


    I see you mention using leftover fabric for a project for someone else…Wonder if you should save some, in case you want in future to add some sort of matching item?


    • I have a small piece left I intend to save until I have more time to make something with it. I don’t have enough to make the curtains for the person who asked but will order more for that job when she comes back with the exact measurements for her windows.


  5. Oh Lois, what a beautiful transformation, it is stunning.. No wonder people are admiring it and wanting to buy it. Such a perfect match. and it is also so good that people are seeing the talent you have and are requesting you do make-overs for them and make curtains etc.. Yes Win WIN..
    Wonderful to see Lois 🙂


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