Sharing all the tips & tricks for how to build a window seat with a cushion & 2 built in bookcases for a large picture window with an attic sloped ceiling in our son’s bedroom.
His new seat & matching bookshelves add a ton of character, save space in his narrow room & look fabulous!
Our window seat & built in bookshelves have definitely become our kid’s favorite spots to cozy up & read.
Table of Contents
How to Build a Window Seat with a Cushion & 2 Incredible Built in Bookcases
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We have been turning our former master bedroom closet into a bedroom for our youngest son Tucker.
You have to get creative when you have 4 kids & not enough bedrooms. 🙂
If you are wondering if we still have a closet… yes we build one HERE.
Instructions for How to Build a Window Seat
Here is our wall soon after we added a window to it. Our former closet had no windows & was very dark!
Measure your Window
The first thing you need to do is measure your window & decide how big you want your window seat.
We went with a 5 foot seat which allowed for 18 inch bookshelves on either side.
Making a Frame for the Window Seat
After determining the size you want your window seat, make the frame for your built in window seat bench.
Securing your Window Seat Frame to the Wall
Find the studs in the wall & screw the back frame to the wall studs as well as the floor. This will ensure that your window seat bench is secure.
Next, Install the seat sides by screwing them to the back frame & floor.
Last, install the front frame by screwing it to the side frames and floor.
Framing out the 2 Bookcases on either side of your Window Seat Frame
Begin framing out the bookshelves. We chose to build the shelves a little off the floor to allow for baseboard to wrap around both.
Facing the Bookcase & Bookshelves for a Beefier Look
Anytime you are building built in bookshelves it is a good idea to face the bookshelf frame and shelves with 1 by 2’s.
It gives the bookshelf a beefier & solid look. It also helps the bookcase or bookshelves more finished.
Face the top of the built in seat & sides with plywood.
Jason ripped down some 1 by 2’s and added some vertical molding to the front of the window seat to give it interest.
Priming & Painting your Window Seat & 2 Built in Bookcases
Once you have it all framed prime the raw wood & give the whole thing a couple coats of paint.
How to Build a Window Seat Cushion with Upholstery Foam
I made the window seat cushion with some upholstery foam, wood, a staple gun & canvas from Fabric.com.
First, I traced the MDF board to match the size of the window seat. Next, I cut out the upholstery foam with a knife slightly larger than the MDF board. I cut & stapled the dark blue denim fabric around the MDF board to finish it off.
Decorating & Adding Pillows for the Window Seat
It was time to retire Tucker’s old pillows from his nursery & make him some new pillows to add to his new spot by the window.
I hand embroidered one of Tucker’s new pillows with his name to make it more personal & added a few navy blue & plaid pillows to match.
Tucker loves to sit here and play transformers, look at books and wait and watch for his big brothers and sister to get off of the bus.
Can’t you just imagine a new puppy sitting at this window? 🙂
Adding a Window Shade above the Window Seat
For the window… I found Tucker’s shade at the Restoration Hardware outlet for $18! It had a $189 price tag on it. Awesome!
Jason made extra window molding to trick the eye to think the window was taller than it was because we didn’t want the shade to cover any of the natural light coming in the window since it is the only window in the room.
Next up for Tucker’s room is adding hardwood floors. You can see how we added wide pine floors HERE.
We picked out the wide plank pine flooring from lumber liquidators like the ones we put in the laundry room.
As you can see from this picture, we wasted no time taking advantage of our new window seat!
Here is our little man “reading” one of his many truck books 🙂
Our Boys Built in Bedroom is Done, See the whole DIY here.
I hope this post inspires you & answers all your questions about how to build a window seat with a cushion & 2 built in bookcases!
by Tara Lehman
Don’t forget to save & pin how to build a window seat with built in bookshelves!
Love this project ! Can you share where you got the custom cushion from?
Thank you for stopping by Asha! I ordered the foam from Amazon and made the cushion myself. Take care, Tara
I absolutely love how this project turned out! As a child, my Dad built a window seat that he sectioned off the inside into three separate toy boxes! The three of us loved having our own storage and a neat place to play on.
Lucky boy, Tucker!??
Thank you so much for your sweet comments about our window seat Peggy! Your dad’s idea to section off the inside as a toy box is a great idea. Take care, Tara
Just gorgeous Tara – I’m planning on building a couple this summer so I’m pinning this !
Thanks so much for sharing 🙂
Thank you so much Suzan!
I love this Tara! Beautiful and functional. Thanks so much for the tutorial. Featured at Be Inspired this morning!
Thank you so much for stopping by Sharon and for your Be inspired link party!!!
love the makes sense carpentry
Thank you Sylvia!