DIY | Play Workbench

Creativity is my sanity. It’s what keeps me grounded, it’s my outlet. And no matter what I am creating with… paper, fabric, wood, I love seeing something come out of nothing. 
Hubby and I love working on any type of project together. It’s bonding time. Thanks to my awesome Dad, who had no qualms over taking his daughter out into the garage with him, I have a fair amount of woodworking knowledge. Hubby learned plenty from his dad and grandfather too, so between the two of us, we have happily acquired many tools, and have big plans for them. 
When I told hubs I wanted to make a play kitchen (under progress!) for Jarvis, he jokingly suggested we make a play workbench. What an excellent idea! It’s actually absurdly easy! So with a babysitter Valentine’s evening, we hit up our local hardware store, Menards and finished the majority of the base in one hour that evening!
It is 3ft tall, with the workspace hitting at 1.5ft. Perfect for him right now. If we need to raise it later, we have plans to add risers or wheels to the bottom.
Supplies list:
2x4s: $8.00 (used 3.5 boards)
Nails: $1.00 (lots extra)
Peg board: $2.79 (only used half)
Spray paint: $3.44 (lots left over!)
Large snaps: $3.99
Canvas scraps: $1.00
Total:  $20.22 
(with nearly enough material left over to make another one!)
The peg board accessories are leftover from Daddy’s workbench in the garage as is the tool box.
All the tools were one of Target’s red ‘Christmas Packs’ and were on sale for $7.99!
So here’s the only ‘process’ picture I took- partway done! Our only mistake was using 2.5 inch nails instead of 3. They were pulling out too easily with the normal pull of the bench, so we had to use a little wood glue to help stabilize them (that’s why you see the clamps below). But now that thing is very very sturdy!
Sorry- taken on my iphone!
It is sanded very, very well with an electric sander, and all nails are finished flush with the wood.
We painted the peg board blue to add a little pop against the orange tools. But left the rest of the wood natural.
I used canvas scraps I had laying around (from some Christmas present dop kits) to create little pouches to hang on the side to store his tools.

We didn’t want to attach them by hanging them on extended nails (talk about toddler hazard!!) so I used heavy duty sew-on-snaps for the canvas side, and nailed the other side into the wood. They are easily removable but completely toddler safe.
And a slightly smaller one for the other side.
And of course, a little brand so we have no doubt who it belongs to!

Here’s to hoping my little boy will enjoy working out in the garage with his Daddy (and Mommy) and will have a little creative gene of his own!
***Measurements have been posted HERE! ***
**Yesterday, while browsing Ikea, I found that they are now offering a play workbench as well… it’s cute, but 4 times as much as our, and I think ours looks more authentic!!**
**I featured this project on Today’s Creative Blog… check out all the other projects featured!
Up next… the DIY play kitchen, fit for a boy! Can’t wait to get started on it!

32 thoughts on “DIY | Play Workbench

  1. @Sandy, let me know if he wants to come look at it or wants measurements! And we have peg board we would sell you for cheap, haha!!

    @Shawna, you could EASILY make this on your own! A pink one would be adorable!! We used a circular saw to cut the wood and peg, but any kind would work! It's just 2×4 pieces! Let me know if you want the measurements!

  2. I AM DYING TO DO THIS OVER THE WEEKEND!! Thank you so much for sharing. Will you please share the measurements??

  3. WOuld you mind sharing your measurements? I just bought all the supplies and I'll be making this for our four year old twins boys. They are so excited that mommy is making this for them!

  4. Oh my!!! This is going to be a great gift for my son's birthday in December…. Do you have the measurements you're able to share?

  5. Hi Chelsea! I found this tutorial on Pinterest and was reading down the page when I suddenly realized… “Hey! I went to high school with Chelsea and Jace!” Small world, isn't it?? 🙂 Great tutorial, planning to do this for my 9 m.o. son's 1st birthday. Hope y'all are doing well! Your kids are precious. 🙂
    -Lindsay (Farrell) Zivney

  6. Hi Chelsea – I love this little workbench and I’d like to feature it on my Benchsite blog’s story about workbenches. I’ll credit your blogspot, of course, and write a bit about it in the credits. I hope this is ok with you. If you want to check out Benchsite, here is one of the themed stories:

    The Workbench story will be published in the second or third week of September (2013). Do get in touch if there’s any problem.

    Many thanks,


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