Kinder "Garden" Bench

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Project by speedingtickets posted 04-02-2010 11:04 PM 2304 views 2 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

When I was asked to build a park bench for my boy’s school auction I had no idea what I was in for. It seemed simple enough. Make it sturdy, and give it lots of surface area for the kids to make their hand print art, and not too much detail to detract from the focus. Sounds Easy… Little did I know most benches out there have teeny tiny slats, which don’t make for a very good canvas. So with no plans and not much to work with on the ole google image search, I set out to design my own.
After much deliberation, and a whole bunch of balled up grid paper, I finally decided on some solid 2×6 construction with generous amounts of gorilla glue, and double biscuit joints to make the frame. I chose some nice wide pine planks for the seat and back slats. I filled all the screw holes to make the surface smooth and primed it white with quite a few coats in hopes that the art would pop.
It was then sent to the classroom where the kids transformed the boring thing into a fantastic piece of functional art, with the help of a very talented parent. I was amazed when it came back for the weatherization process. To determine what type of sealant would not melt the white primer or the acrylic paint the kids used I was provided with a test piece well before the bench was built. After some trial and error I settled on a polycrylic clear coat which is a Minwax product that is essentially a clear plastic coating which works well on Acrylic paint. Provided it is completely dry before application. After several layers, top and bottom, this bench is ready for kids and rain.

7 comments so far

View Donna's profile


1 post in 2970 days

#1 posted 04-03-2010 12:39 AM

That is a one-of-a-kind creation. One lucky family will cherish that forever. Love the handprint flowers!

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4155 days

#2 posted 04-03-2010 12:40 AM

that is fantastic—the bench itself, the community teamwork, the children’s art.

Bravo to everyone.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View James Frederick's profile

James Frederick

175 posts in 3714 days

#3 posted 04-05-2010 07:56 AM

Nice, my daughters pre K class did something similar with a book they read transferred to a bench. The bench was then auctioned off to raise money for the school. A great memory.

-- Change begins somewhere may as well be with me.

View woodworm's profile


14468 posts in 3585 days

#4 posted 04-05-2010 08:35 AM

Sweet project!

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View Cathy Krumrei's profile

Cathy Krumrei

364 posts in 4180 days

#5 posted 04-05-2010 02:52 PM

This is adorable! A really nice bench and special artwork to show it off. I did a fence but had my grandchildren do the painting. I have it in my projects and it’s one of my most precious things I own!
Lucky person who ended up with it. Thanks for sharing.

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3109 days

#6 posted 04-13-2010 12:11 AM

a realy niiice looking bench
great job


View bigike's profile


4052 posts in 3282 days

#7 posted 04-13-2010 01:17 AM

great bench.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop,

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