From old bed frame to a smart garden bench – this free DIY job is inspirational!

There's smart upcycling and then there's this DIY garden bench....

Just when we thought we'd seen it all, this incredible bed to bench transformation came to light! One savvy DIY enthusiast has shown the true extent of upcycling old furniture – by fashioning a dreamy garden bench out of an old pine bed.

Hellan Pearce, from Wiltshire, picked up a free bed on Facebook Marketplace, and used her impressive DIY skills to turn the piece into a smart garden bench and plant shelf - all totally free.

More garden ideas: How to make pallet garden furniture – a step-by-step guide

DIY garden bench idea

bench before and after images

(Image credit: Future PLC/Hellan Pearce)

'I saw the bed advertised on Facebook and thought it would be great to turn into a bench for the garden. ' Hellan tells Latest Deals. Going on to say, 'We've had our current bench for years and it was rotting on the legs. My hubby wasn't convinced and thought I was mad.'

But wow, didn't she prove him wrong!

garden bench

(Image credit: Future PLC/Hellan Pearce)

'The headboard made a perfect back for the bench' says Hellan. 'I cut the bed end down to the size of the bench arms I'd decided on roughly 18 inches each.'

Using all the fixings that came with the free bed all she had to do was drill new holes to reconfigure it. 'I used the slats as the bench seat which were the right size as the bed and bench were the same width.'

"Easy!' she exclaims, 'Then I painted it to match the rest of our garden furniture.'

bedspot on bench

(Image credit: Future PLC/Hellan Pearce)

And to add further savvy credential Hellan used the leftover bed slats for another garden DIY project.

'I had some slats left over and had an idea of a shelf I wanted' Hellan explains. 'We recently bought a blow torch – my hubby thought it would be good to bring the grain out in the wood.'

And that it does...

Garden shelf made using old bed slats

wooden plantstand

(Image credit: Future PLC/Hellan Pearce)

Hellan cut the pine slats into interesting shapes she liked, to form her unique plant shelf.  'The slats were held together at the back with two pieces of wood screwed across, which the shelf can be hung with too,' she explains.

The shelves were then it varnished. With the blow torched used to create the finish. 'The effect using the blow torch is beautiful' Hellan exclaims.  Always use such tools with all the appropriate safety precautions.

Another idea: Homeowner's upcycled sideboard is an inspirational county-style masterpiece!

'I have two lovely things made from a free bed! There are still a few slats left, so watch this space' adds Hellan. She is in fact just about to start her own DIY business, so we will watch this space indeed.

What a great way to reuse old furniture, two jobs incredibly well done!


Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.