How to Build a Banquette Storage Bench
A built-in banquette is a great space-saving option for adding extra storage and seating.
Using a stud finder, find the ceiling joists and mark their locations. The pot rack needs to hang down from them. Map out on the ceiling where the pot rack will be suspended from.
Measure the space from the ceiling to the counter. Identify how much head clearance is needed. Also, make sure it's an easy arms' length reach. Tip: Use masking tape to mark out a square or rectangular outline on the island countertop that's directly below the pot rack. It's easier to measure the length of each side this way.
Make a drawing of the outline of the pot rack. Making this template can save you time at the hardware store. Critical step: Note on your drawing/template where the supports are located for the pot rack.
The exact number of couplings, t-connectors, etc. will vary from project to project. You'll determine what is needed at the hardware store.
In the plumbing aisle, start selecting the materials. Pipe comes in various dimensions. I used 1/4" black pipe. Choose your preference. For this project, it's a good idea to purchase extra materials whenever possible. They can always be returned later if they are not used.
Lay everything out on the aisle floor. Use a measuring tape, drawing or template to make this process move smoothly and help you visualize the pot rack. Lay the corner elbows out first and find the lengths of pipe that work best to create the sides. Tip: T-connectors are needed wherever a supporting pipe will go to the ceiling.
At least two unions (or couplings) are needed to attach one side of the pot rack to the other. They will prevent any problems with pipe thread running in opposite directions. Tip: Ask the assistant in the pipe department to review your plan. Their advice can be helpful.
Select the s-hooks. Bring a piece of your pipe with you to make sure the s-hook fits over the dimension of the pipe. You'll need one hook per pot/pan, approximately 3-4 hooks per side.
Consider the metal color of the s-hook. You can match or contrast the pipe metal. It's your choice.
Lay out the pipe pieces and wipe them with a damp cloth. Tip: Remember to remove all stickers from the pipe pieces before bulding the pot rack.
Using a pipe wrench, start assembling the pot rack following your map/guidelines. Working with pipe gets messy. Work gloves can help.
Wipe down and dry the pot rack.
In a well-ventilated area, spray the pot rack with several coats of clear enamel. Allow for drying time in between each coat. The spray enamel protects the pot rack.
Double check that your pot rack's support legs align with your ceiling joists. Mark all drilling locations on the ceiling. An extra pair of hands is necessary.
Install the pot rack by drilling wood screws securely into the ceiling joists. Have someone help you when installing this pot rack because of its heaviness
Once the pot rack is installed, place the s-hooks on the rack. Tip: You may need a pair of pliers to lightly squeeze the top of the s-hooks closed. They should be loose enough to slide along the pot rack.
Hang pots around the new industrial pot rack.