Little Foot Stool, Big Makeover.


I’ve been working on something pretty big, well I should say my brother and I have been working on something pretty big. Of course, when its done I’ll blog all about it, but for now here’s a peek…

While we were getting our materials for this project (above), I ran across something that was just screaming at me to give it new life.

First, I should give you some back story. My late grandpa, Papa Shu, kept ev-er-y-thing. He was a handyman post retirement, so he had a garage full of, well, everything. With Papa Shu, nothing was ever broken. It could always be fixed, or taken apart and used for something else, but never thrown out, ooooh nooo. Its our own little “flea market” now. This is where we go to find inspiration, treasures, and most of all scrap wood! No joke, there’s enough in there to build a small house. 🙂

But back to the scream for help. This little foot stool was tucked away in the attic of our “flea market.” I’m sure it was put up there years ago with the intention of fixing that wobbly leg. I plan to fix that leg and a little more… Papa Shu this projects for you! Once, its done I’m giving it back  to my Grandma Shu.

 (I’m bummed I forgot to take a before picture of the stool prior to dissecting it.) But here’s the most before picture I can show you.


She was a beauty….back in the day. Not exactly sure of her age but, my mother remembers this being in my grandparents house when she started dating my dad… my parents have been married for almost 38 years. My grandma can’t remember if it belonged to her mother or my grandpa’s mother. So safely, I’m guessing she’s well over 50 years old.  She’s long past due for a good makeover! And that’s just what I have in mind for her.

Time to take off that shabby upholstery and spruce up the legs. Nothing too fancy. It didn’t take long to find exactly what I wanted.

I was drawn to the daisy fabric. I knew my Papa Shu loved daisies and my Grandma Shu loves color! I picked it up and never had a second thought. I was so excited to get started. After I removed the legs and old fabric I needed to clean up the legs a bit. Instead of sanding them down, because they weren’t scratched or dinged up, I used a de-glosser. This is a nice alternative to sanding especially when you have small, or intricate places to reach.

See, they’re not in bad shape. Just a little wash down and they’re ready for their new shade of happy. Which in this case is Krylons, Blue Ocean Breeze. I’ve been itching to do something blue for a while. Blue doesn’t go with anything in my house but there’s just something about that color that makes me happy. 🙂 I’m finally getting my blue fix.

Now, it’s like 100 degrees below freezing outside (well, its below freezing, anyway) so I knew the paint would take forever to dry, even in my garage. So I went with several really, really light coats of paint. Patience is a virtue. Especially when you’re painting. Something that I did not get from my Papa Shu, or anyone else in my family for that matter. 😉 To ease the pain of waiting for paint to dry I got to work on the top. I traced the top of the stool on the foam and cut it out.

When I cut out the circle on the foam I cut on the outside of the line. This will make the cutout a little larger than the top, but better to have more than less. (I’m telling you this because I’m psychic and I know this will happen I did this and had to cut out another circle.)

The daisy fabric is 100% cotton and thin, it looked sort of see through over the foam so I wrapped the top in plain white cotton fabric first.

This gave the daisy fabric a thicker, softer look. Much better…. I may have gone a little crazy with the staple gun, but I wanted it to be tight and as smooth as possible. I repeated the step again with the daisy fabric. Once it was stapled all around I cut the excess fabric off.

Lets take a look at her better side…

” I feel pretty, Oh so pretty…” 🙂

Remember what she used to look like?

Oh, yeah! Soooo much better.

I wasn’t sure if I wanted a fresh painted look for the legs or if I wanted a distressed ‘I’ve-been-around-for-years-and-have-a-story-to-tell’ look. I put it all together and decided I liked the contrast between the new clean fabric and the story-to-tell legs. So there you go, another decision that didn’t take long to make. Usually I fret about those small details but in this case I was very matter-of-fact and swift to decide. Dunno, where that came from…

Ok….the destressing. I used a 180 grit sandpaper to scratch the paint just a bit, not too much. I creased the paper to take the paint out of the crevices of the legs.

I liked it, but… needed more. More of what? I wasn’t quite sure. Something darker, richer….like a glaze, maybe? Then my “ah-ha” moment hit me. Stain! (If she were a Jersey foot stool, I’d call it a bronzer. 😉 ) I used a dark walnut stain. The same stain I used on the Ruler Growth Chart.  I applied it with a craft foam brush and wiped it off with a small cloth. (One that you can toss afterwards because, well, its stained. ) 

Enough of the how-I-did-it! 

She’s gone from 50-something years old to 50-something years new!!!

I heart a good re-stool-ation!!

I hope this puts a smile on my Papa’s face. I was able to do this project for under $13. (That includes my mistake with the foam batting which cost me $3.50.) I want to thank my Papa Shu for being the thrifty man he was, and I want to thank my Grandma Shu for letting him keep all this stuff. 😉 She may or may not had been annoyed by his need to collect and keep everything, but I’m sure now when she see’s all of us carrying out his “to-do list”  it’s a proud moment for her.

I don’t know what I’m waiting for I have a delivery to make!

Off to Grandma’s house I go!

I told you patience doesn’t run in my family!

Happy Thursday, All!

2 responses »

  1. Pingback: DIY Chalkboard Cabinet Door Before & After | twentyphive

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