I needed a bench for our laundry room so I went hunting for inspiration and came across Pottery Barn's Norfolk bench. This bench retails for $499 plus whatever other stuff they tack on--lightyears away from what I would pay for a simple bench.
Instead I splurged on 1x4x8 S4S lumber and four pine table legs from Blue and built my own version. The legs aren't as chunky, but mine is custom built for my space. And PB's bench only came in white, while mine is a custom stain that matches other pieces I have in that room.
I spent $83, including tax and I love it! If you want to spend the time finding straight furring strips or whiteboards, you could almost half the price of my version, but you will have rounded edges on the boards. Not horrible, but it will look a little different.
I blogged about the build at: