Being a true son of these United States, having absorbed the vocabulary appropriate to an American, there are few words in the entire English language more dear to my ear than "free." When, almost a month ago, the mother of one of my graduating seniors offered to leave with me her son's footlocker, I said yes even before I had any thought of a purpose for it--indeed, before I had any notion of its size. Even acknowledging that for three summers it carried the burden of an adolescent's life away from home, to say that it is a large footlocker seems not to be an adequate description. If, as the saying has it, "A friend will hide you; a true friend will help you hide the body," then this footlocker is roughly four true friends.
Naturally enough, I used it for some portion--probably less than half--of my board game collection. Which was good, because those games had to go somewhere.
Lauren, however, was tepid at best about having this monstrous chest just sitting around in any room of our apartment, so I set before myself a bit of a woodworking task that I was able to complete on some of our rainy days. I built--you might say overbuilt--this window seat, painted it, and then left the addition of cushions to Lauren and her sewing machine, to say nothing of her better taste for color and decoration.
The body pillow along the back was something we already had, and happily it matches the paint that we got for free--there's that word again!--from our local recycling depot.
The basic design is like this: I made three rectangles out of 2x4s, then used two 2x4s with dado joints to connect the three rectangles on the bottom and also provide something like a pair of skids to slide the footlocker in and out. I used 3/4" hardwood plywood to join the rectangles on the top and provide the sitting surface, then the thinnest (i.e. cheapest) hardwood plywood I could find for the side (only the one side visible is actually covered, since one opening is needed for the footlocker and the other sides are against walls). Then I used furring strips to dress it up a bit as well as to echo the look of the storage bed that Lauren built for the same room last year.
Mickey Mouse seems to like it well enough, as did our daughter: