Simple Joinery Long Bench

Ian Anderson

Simple Joinery Cotton Strap Bench by Ian Anderson
Simple Joinery Cotton Strap Bench by Ian Anderson
Simple Joinery Long Bench

Design and photography by Ian Anderson
Published in Spring 2021

Because of the efficient use of wood in this design, costs to produce it are rather low. It’s generous 73in length can be made longer or shorter by changing a quick wood measurement during its production. Working with hardwood can be quite tough, though necessary in the case of this design, but poplar hardwood (or other equivalent wood on the Janka hardness test scale, like cherry) is just soft enough where cutting, sanding, and stapling are easy.

Simple Joinery Cotton Strap Bench by Ian Anderson
Simple Joinery Cotton Strap Bench by Ian Anderson
Smooth Planed Poplar Wood, 1in x 3in (20.5mm x 70mm)
*Any popular hardwood can be used, like Poplar, Birch, Beech, Cherry, and Oak. Softer hardwoods like Cherry and Poplar are recommended. Metric measurements above are actual, not nominal.
Quantity required: 4 pieces 71in (180cm) long, 8 pieces 17.5in (44cm) long, 2 pieces 22in (56cm) long
Heavyweight Cotton Webbing, 2in (50mm) width, 2mm thick
Quantity required: 32 yards (29 meters)
1/4in Dowel Pins
Quantity required: 50
Satin Clear Acrylic Varnish (or paint)
Quantity required: 1/4 Quart
Flat Head Wood Screws, #6 x 1-1/2in (4 x 35mm)
Quantity required: 24
Hand Saw
Power Drill
Drill Bits
Ruler or Tape Measure
Wood Glue
Sandpaper, 180 Grit
Heavy Duty Upholstery Staple Gun w/ Staples
Help Each Other

4 thoughts on “Simple Joinery Long Bench”

  1. Where did you buy the heavyweight cotton? The ocre color looks great, and I’d like to replicate it. But I’m hesitant to buy the yellow strap linked via eBay above since that yellow looks more harsh/bright. (I’ve really enjoyed making three of the chair designs here with my young boys-thanks for the great site!!)

    1. We’re so glad you’re making use of the instructions! We would love to see how they are turning out – feel free to send some images our way!

      The yellow strap was bought from this supplier, so it should look the same in-person. There is a chance some things have changed regarding their production though, so we would recommend buying a sample first. There are a variety of other strap suppliers on etsy that offer 2″ cotton straps, but I don’t think they will be quite as thick as this one.

      *One construction note on the bench: If this will go through heavy use, we recommend reinforcing the mid section with an extra 16.75″ long 1×3 across the underside before adding the straps. This will help with any bowing caused by the torque of the straps.

  2. If I wanted to do a solid wood bench instead of cotton webbing, how would you recommend doing that? Thanks for your help!

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