The husband is probably not going to want to go away anymore.
This is the second time that I've embarked on a big project while the husband is gone, although this one was far less extreme. Last time I ripped up the carpet in our master bedroom; this time around, I built a banquette seat for our kitchen table.
I don't know why I get the itch to do home projects when the husband is gone. We could chalk it up to my absolute love of surprising people. That and watching far too much "While You Were Out" on TLC back in the day.
So the husband took off this weekend to see the University of Washington play in Chicago and I was at home with free time on my hands. And obviously I fill my free time with projects. (This may not be normal.)
I've been wanting a bench/banquette seat for my kitchen for awhile. We live in a pretty small and older house (thank you, expensive Seattle real estate market) but we have people over quite a bit. We try and fit enough chairs around our table, but it's not the best use of space. When I saw some projects on Pinterest where people used an Ikea Expedit bookcase as a banquette around their tables, I knew it was the solution.
Also, our old and small house does not come with a ton of storage -- especially in the kitchen. I don't have a pantry or really much cupboard/drawer space at all and creating a banquette with storage underneath solved a bit of that problem as well.
I bought two Expedit bookcases -- a longer one and shorter one -- and installed it (thanks Mom and Dad for coming over for dinner and Ikea assembly). I also bought drawers and a cupboard addition at Ikea designed for the Expedit, which helped me maximize my storage even more.
I then purchased thick foam from Joanns. They'll cut it lengthwise, but they won't trim the width, so using an electric knife, I trimmed the foam width from 24 inches to 15 inches.
Rather than sew a cushion cover, I chose to simply wrap the foam like a present, using duct tape on the back. It may have been a slacker move, but you can't tell I used duct table, and from what I can tell, the fabric is staying nicely.
I am really pleased with the finished product and cannot get over how perfectly the Expedit fits in my little kitchen corner.
And the husband loves it, too. Whether he liked the surprise or not, I'm not as sure. I don't know that he's as keen on them as I am. ;)