Your entryway is one hard worker, and the gatekeeper to the rest of your home. Mail, grocery bags, shoes, and gear regularly come and go, and your home's well-being depends in part on its ability to filter out the clutter and prevent mess from trickling into your main living space. A good hardworking entryway bench is the ultimate secret weapon, combining style, seating and storage to keep everything clear of chaos and mess (and to look good doing it).
If this is just what your entryway is missing, but you don't want to spend a bunch of money right now, try DIY. Here are several do-able, inexpensive projects for every taste and skill level. And don't forget: these work well elsewhere in the house as well, especially at the end of the bed.
This storage bench, made by Wit & Delight from IKEA kitchen cabinets, looks good enough for the living room, but would be a boon to any entryway.
This fantastic DIY bench comes from Mamie Boude, who added a knotted net underneath for bonus storage. It's the perfect spot to sit and to store your shoes and bags. (Although the tutorial is in French, the Google translation is pretty good, and the photos give you a good idea on how to make it.)
This bench was spotted over on Oh Oh Blog. It's made from basic parts you can find at any hardware store, and the end result is so functional. It's perfect if you like the spare, utilitarian look at home. And it's a snap to make.
I like this project because it's endlessly customizable. Just buy a new throw blanket and staple gun to over an existing bench. Dream Green DIY purchased a bench from Overstock for the job, but this could be done for cheaper (and still be easy to make) if you buy the wood and hairpin legs separately, like this sheepskin one from Emma Magazine.
This rustic farmhouse bench from Shabby Creek Cottage is about as basic as it gets. But paint it your favorite color, and embellish with baskets you love, and it will work with any home style.
This modern plywood storage unit was built for a particular space in the Paper & Stitch studio, but it would work well inside any front door. In addition to the actual bench, the side cubbies can hold any number of items. It looks particularly great with the bright pillows on top.
Listen up you fans of leather. A Beautiful Mess made this woven bench from scratch.
Francesca from Fall for DIY owned this bench for many years, and decided to give it a little upgrade with the help of the cork sheet.
A storage chest is just a bigger bulkier bench, with the added bonus of deep, cavernous storage inside. Decorate it with some padding and pillows, and it's a great option that solves two problems in one. Find the plans for this one over on the Woodshop Diaries.
If you're not up for DIYing anything, there's always the option to shop instead. Consider IKEA's MOLGER bench, which for $40 works well anywhere in the house. The shelving underneath is particularly good for shoe storage.