A Craft Space Upcycle: From Potting Bench to Project Table

The upper tier of the project table holds sewing notions, grid shelves, and a marker holder, while the lower shelf holds fabric rolls and storage bins full of trim. (photos by Bob Farley)

Years ago, I bought an industrial-style potting bench to use as a cutting table. It was a slightly damaged floor model so I got a really good deal. With a metal grid back, shelves and a drawer, it was the perfect first work table, and it fit nicely in a small room in my house. I removed the galvanized tabletop and replaced it with a over-sized laminate tabletop for a larger and smoother surface for cutting out runs of fabric. Flash forward to my studio (the sewing shack), the bench now serves as a second cutting table, a project holding table, and storage for sewing and craft supplies. Whenever I need to go to someone’s home to cut out a slipcover for a sofa, I simply pick up the laminate top and take it with me.

A laminate tabletop works great for smooth cutting and is large enough to hold projects that are in the works. Metal buckets, industrial clips, and grid shelves are perfect for organizing all of my sewing notions.

I like to use recycled tins for holding chalk markers. Grid shelves and a pencil cup hook right onto the grid panel of the project table. They hold all of my markers, chalk, scissors, and more.

With the industrial potting bench indoors and a couple of hours work with scrap wood outdoors, I now have two tables from one. I applied the galvanized tabletop removed from the industrial bench to my DIY wooden potting bench which lives on the deck of my husband’s modern-style shed. I used leftover lumber from the building of the shed and other projects to make the potting bench, which is stylish, sturdy, and useful. It’s great for potting up plants, it serves as a bar stand during parties, and it works well as a display table for art shows. I’ll have to post about it one day.

I applied the galvanized tabletop to my the DIY potting bench. Remember the strawberry pot succulent planter?

For more neat upcycled project tables and workstations, see below!

One Response

  1. Rosa Greene says:

    What a wonderful idea. I wonder where I might find an industrial bench? It would be perfect for my small sewing room. Thanks must for the idea


About Michelle Reynolds 


I’m a slipcover maker who refuses to fill the trash with the cutaway bits of designer fabrics, so I strive to make use of every scrap. I live with my ...

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