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Nearly finished hall bench

I’m a little behind on posting updates throughout this project build (actually, I’m almost finished), but here’s a quick look at it before final sanding and finish. I’m making this Arts & Crafts hall/entryway bench from red oak for my church. We built a new addition on a few years ago, and are still finding needs for furnishings and such. This bench will go in the entryway near the coat rack. Loyal WOOD Magazine readers might recognize this bench, or at least its inspiration, from issue 145 (November 2002). The original plan was open below with a shelf and fixed seat. My bench has a hinged seat, and I enclosed the front to provide storage inside (and out of sight). Rather than doing all the joinery with screws, as in the original, I made nearly all the joints with mortises and tenons. The front panel joins the sides with a full-width stub tenon into a routed groove. And the arms I did join with screws. You can still see the plugs standing proud over those screws; I just need to trim them flush and sand. I’m hoping to have this bench done in a week or so.

A Handy Way to Build a New Hamper

Last week while cleaning dirty clothes out of the hamper in my bedroom, I discovered the back of the unit had broken away from the bottom. (That happens when kids stuff more clothes in than it was meant to hold.)

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