The Design Confidential Free DIY Furniture Plans and How to Build a Cutter Picnic Bench

A fabulous bench for the end of the bed, your entryway or even in the backyard for a little enjoyment of the great outdoors... Did I mention easy to build? This will be a bit like a puzzle and fun to piece together!

As with all of our plans, you are building at your own risk and you should have a firm understanding of building in general before you attempt many of our plans (some are easy as pie and perfect for beginners). With that, go forth, have fun, take lots of pictures and share them in a showcase or on social media with the hashtag #builtTDCtuff and we will share our faves! Be sure to tag @thedesignconfidential on Instagram / FB and @thedesconf on Twitter.

The Design Confidential Free DIY Furniture Plans and How to Build a Cutter Picnic Bench

Showcase: Built From These PlansI am so honored each and every time one of you fine friends builds from these very plans! If you have built this piece, please take a moment and showcase your build! We are dying to see your fabulous hard work!

Estimated Cost
Free DIY Furniture Plans // How to Build a Cutter Picnic Bench
  • 2 – 2x3 at 8’
  • 1 – 2x2 at 8’  
  • 6 – 1x2 at 8’  
Cut List
  • 4 – 2x3 at 16-3/4” – Legs 
  • 2 – 2x3 at 16” – Bottoms              
  • 2 – 2x2 at 46” – Tops        
  • 4 – 1x2 at 3-7/8” – Ends   
  • 27 – 1x2 at 16” – Slats      
  • 52 – 1x2 at 3/4” – Spacers

Before beginning to build, always check in on my site to make sure you have the most up to date set of plans, I occasionally update and change the plans to make the building process easier or to allow for less expensive purchasing of materials! Read through the entire set of instructions and all comments before beginning this project. If you print out or save plans, be sure to check in on my site to be sure you have the most up to date set of plans, as I occasionally update things for ease of building or buying. If you are new to building, read through the GETTING STARTED section and other articles found under the BUILD tab in the menu on my site, it has valuable information about how to get started, tools and techniques. If you are unfamiliar with the finishing process, visit my Finishing school for some tips and tricks for painting like a pro and for special finishing practices. Use glue to secure your joints and Consider Painting or Staining individual sections prior to assembling. This makes the paint application virtually flawless. Coat with a spray on Poly or Wipe on Poly to protect your finish and your piece and it will last for ages. Adhere to all safety standards and guidelines, and be sure you follow safety protocol throughout your build. If you are unsure about whether you are building safely, run a quick online search for the tool or technique you are using, or contact me via email or post to the forum before you move ahead. My contact info can be found in the menu of my site.

Step 1
Free DIY Furniture Plans // How to Build a Cutter Picnic Bench

Cut the pieces for the Legs. On the top edge, measure 1/4” and make a mark. From this point, mark and cut a 45-degree angle. Make a 45-degree angle cut (perpendicular to the 45-degree angle on the top of the Leg) on the bottom of the Leg. 

Step 2
Free DIY Furniture Plans // How to Build a Cutter Picnic Bench

Cut the pieces for the Bottoms. Cut each end at a 45-degree angle as shown. With the Kreg jig set for 1-1/2” material, drill pocket holes in both ends of the Bottoms (on the longest side of the Bottom, which will face downward when assembled). Attach the Bottoms to the Legs as shown with glue and 2-1/2” pocket hole screws.

Step 3
Free DIY Furniture Plans // How to Build a Cutter Picnic Bench

Cut the pieces for the Tops. Cut each end at a 45-degree angle as shown. With the Kreg jig set for 1-1/2” material, drill pocket holes in both ends of the Tops (on the longest side of the Top, which will face upward when assembled). Attach the Tops to the Legs as shown with glue and 2-1/2” pocket hole screws.

Step 4
Free DIY Furniture Plans // How to Build a Cutter Picnic Bench

Cut the pieces for the Ends. Cut only one end of each End piece at a 45-degree angle as shown. Attach the Ends to the Tops as shown with glue and 1-1/4” brad nails. See how the Ends hide those pocket holes? Nifty, huh?

Step 5
Free DIY Furniture Plans // How to Build a Cutter Picnic Bench

Cut the pieces for the Slats and Spacers. Place the first Slat next to the End pieces, flush on each end with the Tops. Secure the Slat to the Ends with glue and 1-1/4” brad nails, countersunk (brads will be nailed through the side of the Slat into the Ends). Next, position Spacers next to the Slat, one on each Top. Secure the Spacers to the Tops with glue and 1-1/4” brad nails. Repeat this step until the last Slat has been positioned on the other end, next to the End pieces. The best way to finish this piece is to have the Slats one color and the rest of the pieces another color – this will give the really cool effect of the Slats “cutting” into the Bench. 

Finishing Instructions

Fill any Screw, Nail or Pocket Holes, Sand and Finish as Desired. For Finishing Tips and Tricks visit my Finishing School


// Disclaimer: Some rights reserved. Private use only. Feel Free to link to any of my plans so long as you ONLY use 1 image and provide an ADEQUATE link back to the original source and appropriate plan! Plans from this page are not to be used for commercial purposes or republished without the express written consent of Rayan Turner, The Design Confidential. By accessing or using any part of the web site, you agree to become bound by the terms and conditions of this website as outlined under Terms of Use. If you do not agree to all the terms and conditions of this agreement, then you may not access the Website or use any services. The information contained in this website is for general information purposes only. The information is provided by The Design and while we endeavor to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk. In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, personal injury or death, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of information or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this website. I hope to provide accurate plans, however, I cannot guarantee each plan for accuracy. Not every plan that I post has been built and tested, so you are building at your own risk. It is recommended that you have a clear understanding of how the project works before beginning any project. Please contact me if you find an error or inaccuracy so that I might fix it. The Design is inspired by but does not replicate exact designs, any similarities between these plans and items sold at specialty retailers is coincidential and not endorsed by or related to any said retailers. // Post May Contain Affiliate Links


Despite the title of this article, this is not actually going to be all about my feelings or personal reflections. Unless you count gazing at my full length reflection in the mirror a personal reflection (which you totally could). Nope, just a bit of decorating goodness, progress on my closet makeover, and a super handy tool, especially if you are working on a project by yourself. I can't tell you how many times I have gotten creative (and completely irritated) when I am trying to measure something larger than my personal wingspan and I am by myself. Let's not even reflect on how this scenario plays out when I need to measure both height and width then need to mark my point... multiple times. Forget it... So frustrating. I have developed some tricks over the years, but there are circumstances where those tricks don't precisely work, like when you are working in the middle of an empty wall and you need to calculate relatively precise distances between objects... And then do some math that hurts your brain... 

My tricks have nothing whatsoever to do with measuring, more like for hanging things and making sure they are level without having to climb up and down the ladder 87 times. But these smarty little Intel Tablets can actually give you exactly the kind of measurements you need when you are trying to figure out how many mirrors you can fit between two dressers and if you have enough space to hang a shelf above those cute dressers. Imagine if you were planning a gallery wall... you could snap a picture of the wall, tap the two points you want to gauge the distance between, both horizontally and vertically, then use a stylus to draw frame positions directly on your picture. You can even measure your frame size to get a true to life representation of how things will look. But, I digress down the rabbit hole of possibilities.

Armed with all my numbers I set out to add a bit of reflection to this space and some small storage solutions that are big on style, not on size. Visually, I didn't want to add bulk or weight to the space, prefering instead to keep things light with a round metal wire shelf and wire shelf brackets for hanging my heels.

To create the high heel storage unit I simply installed the two of these shelf brackets side by side and wrapped them at the ends with Mason Twine (similar to the stuff I used for the closet rods) to keep them close enough together that my heels sit and stay perfectly, regardless of the height (or lack thereof) of the heel. They hook over the spot where the shelves would go if I were using these as shelves, and fit nicely in the space between the brackets.

Now that I am virtually done with my side of this closet project (I still have a few other things to address), I am about to embark on the other half... otherwise known as mister TDC's side of the closet, but shhhh, don't tell him. He is resistant to change and fights me every step of the way until everything is finished... then he usually loves it.

To see just how far we have come... check out the other projects for this space!

Out of the Darkness and Into the Light // Easy Lighting Update

DIY // From Wiry Slobs to Sleek Hanging Rods

Just Add Shelves // Easy DIY Shelving for Stylish Shoe Storage

Closet Case // Don't Sweat the Small Stuff


#spon: I'm required to disclose a relationship between our site and Intel. This could include the Intel Corporation providing us w/content, product, access or other forms of payment.

The Design Confidential Room Envy Walking On Water and 5 Things

I have always thought that a vacation home that is not stationary and is actually more like a boat of some sort, would be a much more flexible vacation home. You wouldn't be confined to one place and could essentially take that vacation home with you as you travel and explore.

Obviously I know absolutely nothing of the actual people who own this gorgeous thing, but their space gives me a serious case of Room Envy. This boat is filled with spaces that seem to simplify and streamline, only catering to the essential things that are necessary for maximizing their R and ;R. I imagine the people who inhabit this vessel are very much a 'work hard, play hard' kind of family and I can appreciate that to no end.

If this is your first Room Envy + 5 Things here at the House of TDC, you can read past articles here, and they are basically my chance to share a room or space that seems to represent a life or lifestyle worthy of envy and 5 things about me that you likely don't know. A little up close and personal with a bit of pretty inspiration thrown in, so here goes...

The Design Confidential Room Envy Walking On Water and 5 Things


One / My adorable little bird baby, at the ripe age of 2 1/2 has officially gone to the dark side. He has passed successfully into the realm of toddler-hood and is well on his way to becoming the crazed dramatic teenager-type my 7 year old is. The terrible two's doesn't even begin to describe some of our recent adventures, though I know for certain this is simply his version of them. Extreme and tenacious, it seems as though that sweet and mild tempered little guy is gone for now, and has been replaced by a demanding, dominating, alpha slash a-type personality. As if our little group needed another... eek, it certainly did not, and this change makes for loud and large conflict that seemingly erupts out of nowhere and any moment, but most particularly when you least want it to.

Two / I have been ridding my life and our household of excess. It feels amazing to let things go and get rid of things that I have carried with me for years, even when those things don't bring me happiness or have any current use for me. It bogs down my creativity and forces me to 'make things work' when I would be well suited to simply go without rather than settle for something that isn't perfect. This is a great book if you are looking to simplify and unburden.

The Design Confidential Room Envy Walking On Water and 5 Things

Three / My infection is still very much present and accounted for and I think the forced respite from work and regular activities has given me a chance to seriously reevaluate how I spend my time and the type of time I give to and spend with my family. I need to live life, now. It doesn't cost a single thing to make a memory that will last a lifetime and it's those memories that I hope my boys hold close as they grow older and eventually move on to have their own lives and families.

Four / I have been wanting to share more of my life here with all of you and expand the topics we chat about to include more of those raw everyday moments, both beautiful and not so beautiful perhaps. Each of us travels on a special and unique journey through our lives and I have felt for some time that the story I tell here is only a very small part of my whole and actual story. I am hoping to fill that gap and make this space more representative of who I am and all that I love. It's a tricky path to travel as I have such an amazing group of you who have been part of this community from the start and I honestly don't know if this is something you will enjoy. But, I think with blogger burnout becoming such a prevalent thing (and something I experience often), and the internet going the way of tumblr and pinterest with words that are few and far between... that rather than trying to ease my workload by growing this brand and bringing on contributors to expand into the world of mass blogging, that perhaps I do the opposite and simplify, round out, and get more personal. If I have a space where I can share those things I love, whatever they may be, then I will love that space in a more honest and wholehearted way and hopefully this will resonate with you too. At least that is the idea... what do you think? I promise it won't mean the end of this site or the death of anything we currently do, it will just be more and more can certainly be better.

The Design Confidential Room Envy Walking On Water and 5 Things

Five / I mentioned one of my goals for this year right here, and I am so excited to say that I have set those wheels in motion and I am completely immersed in making those dreams a reality, in the present. No more waiting... only doing. I am also seriously considering rolling up my sleeves and doing more client based design work. It seems I am happiest when I am making and decorating and so I should be trying to fill my life with more of those things, don't you think? I have the most wonderful group of you who spend your time with me here and put your faith in all that I do, but as a group of fellow DIY'ers I am not sure if hiring a Designer is the type of thing you would be inclined to do... but I am eager to find out!

The Design Confidential Room Envy Walking On Water and 5 Things

Images Via / Project by Pipkorn + Kilpatric


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