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Church Pew Cut Down!

This is kinda a sloppy tutorial on how i cut down my church pew.  I wasn’t really planning to do a tutorial on it, but as i was posting it on Facebook, a lot of people asked how i was going to do it so i started taking pics of my process.  But i probably forgot some because i was just busy getting it done :)

So – i found an awesome church pew that a friend of mine was selling!  It was old and long and she had just painted it an awesome color and it was perfect for what i wanted behind my couch.  So, i bought it and brought it to my shop where it sat for a couple of months :)  I just didn’t have the time or motivation to bring it home yet and i started thinking it was going to be too long.  After a couple months of it being in my way at the shop, i finally brought it home to get it done.

(Lots of bad cell phone pics here!)

As you can see, its way to big!  I really loved the length of it and i really wanted it there, but i wasn’t so sure about cutting it down.  What to do, what to do….

It just stuck out way to far into the walk way and just looked off.

I decided that thats where i wanted it, and i was going to make it work!  I grabbed a hammer and just started pounding on the side.  It came off pretty easy actually.  There were a couple screws up under the bench where some metal hardware was that i unscrewed, but the rest was just glued in.

I then made my measurements and was going to cut the bench right in the house, but my jigsaw that i had at the house wasn’t going to work – the blade was to shallow and thats all that i had.  So i left it for the next morning and ran to my shop to grab a few tools.

I dragged the bench out to the porch and cut it there :)

I used both my hand saw and my oscillating saw where the bench angled because my hand saw couldn’t cut deep enough.

There was also a supportive bar under the seat part that had to be cut down.  That one had a little metal bracket in it that i had to cut a little notch out of with my jigsaw.

After getting it all cut to the right length (i cut about 14-18 inches off), i had to get it all put back together.  Originally the bench had a mortise and tenon where they attached together, but i decided that it would be just fine screwed back together.  I used my kreg jig to make pocket holes and that would keep it nice and sturdy.

This picture is a little wonky, but you can see that up underneath it had a long metal bracket that supported the seat and tied all 3 parts together.  I reattached that and everything was nice and secure.

All cut down – so much better!!!  It still has the same look, but just a bit shorter.  I ended up cutting about 14-18 inches off is all but it made all the difference.

I then decided that i wanted the bench white so it wouldn’t stand out so much.  I wanted it to blend in more.  I really liked the color it had been painted, but i just went for it to see my vision through!

I mixed up some Sweet Pickins Milk Paint in Flour Sack and got to painting :)  Milk Paint is awesome because there are no toxic odors and chemicals so you can just paint it in your house.

After all painted and sanded to show a little of the old color through, it was done!  I loaded it up with pillows that i found at Target, TJ Maxx and Homegoods and got some cute old baskets from another friend for underneath.

Im really so glad i painted it white!  The other color was pretty, but i love how the white blends and doesn’t interfere with the colors on my dining chairs – i think it would have been just too much leaving it the other color.

I also love how its low profile, so it doesn’t clog up visual space.

You cant even tell it was chopped since all the pocket holes are hidden!

Still plenty of room in the walk way :)

I definitely could have filled the pocket holes before i painted them – but since its hidden behind the couch i didnt bother.

Thats it!  Fairly easy to do if you have the right tools.  Only took me about 30 minutes to cut down and reattach and then another hour or so for painting and now its exactly like i envisioned it!

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