A Custom DIY Window Seat And Bookcase In The Master Bedroom | The Interior Frugalista: A Custom DIY Window Seat And Bookcase In The Master Bedroom
A Custom DIY Window Seat And Bookcase In The Master Bedroom | The Interior Frugalista

January 26, 2015

A Custom DIY Window Seat And Bookcase In The Master Bedroom

I've been hinting to you guys long enough about an ambitious project going on in the master bedroom.  Get your mind out of the gutter...I know you went there!  Today I am finally sharing the reveal of our Custom DIY Bookcase and Window Seat Built-Ins.

Custom DIY bookcase and window seat

Last summer when we had the windows replaced on our humble abode we also had the window in the master bedroom enlarged.  Pictured below is our old window and how the room was decorated several years ago.  I actually thought it was a nicely decorated at the time, what was I thinking!

Old aluminum slider window in the master bedroom

What a difference after the new window was installed!  I absolutely love it and all the light that it lets in.  You can see by the painter's tape that we were deep into the planning stages of our future built-in.

New enlarged vinyl window in the master bedroom

Since buying this house almost two decades ago I had envisioned a window seat overlooking our back yard.  We are fortunate to have a private yard with mature trees that backs onto a green belt.  I love watching the flocks of birds that visit our feeders, the squirrels leaping from tree to tree gathering pine cones and peanuts, and the rabbits hopping around in the field.

Well I finally got that window seat and it all started with a trip to Home Depot to get these...

Pine boards to build custom window seat and bookcase

First using the two tall pre-cut pieces of pine pictured above we built a bookcase.  Basically a rectangle 80" high by 12" deep.

Building a custom DIY Bookcase in the master bedroom

To accommodate adjustable shelves we used this handy Kreg Shelf Pin Jig that we ordered online. You basically work in sections starting at the top by drilling holes using the template and working your way down.  You can see how it works here.  Using a router with a half round bit the front of each shelf was given a bull nose edge.

Kreg Shelf Pin Jig for adjustable shelves on custom bookcase

Next we built a 60" x 18" bench seat. The carcass was built with 2 x 3 lumber which was suitable for strength but not as heavy or bulky as 2 x 4's. The exterior is lined with pre-cut pieces of pine and the interior with 1/8" thick hardboard, which has a smooth surface for storing blankets.

You'll notice we didn't move the electrical plug because it is one we rarely use. Instead we made a cut out so it can be accessed on the rare occasions when we need it.  The back of the bench is mounted onto the wall and three legs, also purchased at Home Depot, support the front. Not only did we do this for decorative purposes but there is a heat register on the floor under the bench and so being raised allows for unobstructed heat flow.

Custom DIY bench seat carcass

The lid is pre-cut pine cut deeper than the seat to allow for a 2" over hang. Using a router with a half round bit the front was given a bull nose edge. A pine plate was installed in the back to accommodate the piano hinge and allow the lid to open fully. To add some detail to the front we mitered thin pieces of trim and attached them with construction adhesive taped to secure in place while curing.

Trim on custom DIY bench seat

Custom DIY bench seat with decorative trim on the front

Rather than have a super long bench we decided to build a short bookcase on the end.  Can never have enough storage, right! 

Custom DIY shelving with window seat

We added small crown molding along the top to dress it up.

Trim around base of custom DIY open cabinet

Then we added crown molding to the top of the tall bookcase.  The base of both units were trimmed with baseboard for a custom finish.

Installing crown molding on custom DIY Bookcase

Pictured below is the 3" thick foam I cut to size using a serrated bread knife for the bench.

Three inch foam used for the custom DIY bench seat

The entire unit was primed first with Zinsser Bullseye 123 Primer followed by two coats of white satin latex paint.

DIY Custom Window Seat and Bookcase Primed


Custom window seat and bookcase painted white

 The results are even better than I had envisioned and I couldn't be happier.

DIY master bedroom window seat and bookcase

I'll be sharing how I made the upholstered seat and toss cushions soon.

Repurposed drop cloth cushion for DIY window seat

Custom DIY window seat and bookcase

I was concerned adding a built in was going to make the bedroom appear smaller but what ended up happening is that it made it look much larger. Don't you agree?

Master Bedroom before and after Custom DIY window seat

I'll be sharing how I turned our old curtain panels into a faux roman shade in an upcoming post.

Custom DIY built in bookcase and window seat

It may have taken over a decade but it was sure worth the wait!

UPDATE: January 31, 2015
I've had several questions about the wall behind the bed and the room color.  The wall is a Chelsea Allover Stencil.  The paint color is Benjamin Moore "Wedgewood Gray" HC-146. 

This is the second ambitious project in this room.  The first was adding another closet by stealing a small piece of real estate beside the existing closet. 
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