Sunday, July 29, 2012

Better In An Hour: Easy upholstery

Behold, our ugly red vinyl footstool. (Forgot to take a
photo rightside-up.)


It's been a while since we did a DIY crafty post, but don't fret: since we're getting the keys to our new house on Tuesday. Here's a small project that saved a little footstool from the trash:

Behold, my ugly footstool. Find your own similarly-shaped piece of furniture--a footstool, a padded stool, or something else entirely. This style of upholstering won't work as well on, say, a stuffed couch; look for something smaller, with a wood base to receive the staples.

-an old piece of furniture (ie footstool)
-a staple gun and staples
-a piece of fabric
-foam, yoga mat, or other padding

First, we cut the yoga mat up. We used an old, thin, unappealing yoga mat to add padding to the stool, as the original padding was worn down to nothing. We cut three ovals of yoga mat out with a pair of scissors after tracing the footstool onto it. This step took 5 minutes.

Next, we stacked those onto the stool; we then took our piece of fabric and put it on top. Then we flipped the stool over, and began stapling the fabric to the bottom of the stool. This step took 15 minutes.

You'll likely need to keep adjusting your foam/yoga mat pieces to make sure they haven't shifted out of position. There's a knack to going around turns or corners, too: create tiny, intentional folds, and staple them down. On the straightaways, you can just go straight and tight.

Lots of staples for a secure attachment!

Cut off any excess, add any staples you need to, and hammer in any staples that didn't quite jab all the way into the wood. This step took 5 minutes.

And there you have it! A much more attractive footstool than the one you started out with!   And, in total, this entire project took 25 minutes. Now, at some point we will be painting the legs, which I estimate will take another 30 minutes to properly sand, prime, and paint.

Not bad, eh!

Simple, easy, and good for us lazy people. Just my kind of DIY makeover.


  1. I like to refer to this sort of thing as half-assed half-assery. Looks great!

    1. Love it; that's obviously what we should have named this blog post series!