I found these gorgeous benches on Amazon, though they were slightly pushing my bench budget so I searched for some tutorials and tried to do it myself. I ultimately decided to make stools, and they turned out great and were really quite simple. They add such a beautiful touch to any space, even when not in use, bringing sparks of brightness to any part of the room. This is one of my favorite projects!
First, the quality really depends on base materials. For example, how soft and nice it will feel depends on the fur you purchase. In the making of this, I also really wanted to have mid-century style angled legs, but the brackets I purchased did not hold up. There’s a quick and cheap way to do this ( about 30 minutes), and a longer, more deluxe route (hours). I’ll note the options at each step.
Time: 30m – 4h
- Always read the instruction in full before starting any project 🙂
- Get your materials. You’ll need
- Seat. This can be a variety of materials but wood is easier to work with. About 15” is what I want with, it’s a great size as the fur around it makes it just a bit bigger.
- Fabric, enough to cover the width of your seat and to wrap around it. For a 15” seat, you’ll need a square of fabric of 19”-21″.
- Legs – there’s a variety to purchase depending on what style you want. You can purchase them at a variety of locations, like Home Depot, and they range from $3 to $25 per leg. I got the $5 dollar variety and they look great. The materials vary from wood to metal.
- If you purchase unfinished wood legs, you might want to get wood paint to color them. I painted my legs to match the rest of the furniture in my room.
- Cushion – this is a foam padding that is the comfort layer of your seat. You’ll cut this match the seat of 15”.
- Brackets. Depending on the legs you’ve gotten, you’ll need brackets to fit them into. I chose angled brackets, which did not turn out to be ideal. The metal on them snapped after a good 6 months of use. I’d recommend getting better quality brackets or not using angled brackets which are less reliable.
- *Backing – this is an optional step, no one but yourself will know if you’ve made the bottom of this clean. If you choose to go with this, any faux leather, felt, or other thick fabric will work well. You’ll cut this into a 15”x15”
- *Felt bottoms – I’d recommend getting a few felt bottoms so your beautiful ottoman is easy to move and doesn’t scratch any floors.
- Basic tools:
- A screw driver, nails, and other basic toolbox items.
- A Staple gun for the fabric. You can try a strong glue for the fabric instead, but it will be much harder to work with.
- *A drill isn’t necessary, but it makes this a tad easier.
Step 1: You’ll want to cut all your materials to the correct size. Using your seat base as the stencil, trace the exact size on your cushion foam, and onto your felt bottom. For the faux fur, you’ll need a minimum of a few inches more as it wraps around the seat and foam, for mine I cut it to about 20”.
Step 2: If you need to paint your legs, now is the time as they’ll take a while to dry. I used the two-in-one polyurethane paint and it is not the best. It’s always better to use a stain first then a poly layer, but I was in a rush and looking to save a few dollars. The quality of the product showed: you’ll have better results if you do this in two steps.
Step 3: Lay your foam on your seat and staple the edges into the wood around the permitted. Staple to the top of wood and avoid the sides. This is your seat cushion. Step 4: Place your faux fur face down and then the seat cushion side first on-top. We’ll be wrapping the fur around it. The open part of the seat will now be the bottom. Wrap the fur around and staple the fur onto the bottom of the seat along the perimeter avoiding placing any staples into the side. If your fur is too long, nows a good time to cut it.
Step 5: * Optional. I didn’t do this for my first seat and it was fine, not one person noticed. Take the 15” felt fabric and either staple it or use chair pins to push it into the seat bottom, to cover the wood so the entire stool will be covered in fabric.
Step 6: Attach the brackets and the legs. First, place the brackets on the area that you want to have them and make very light pencil marks to note the location. Then, screw them in. This is where a drill is handy. Once you’ve screwed them all into the correct place, go ahead and place/screw the legs into the correct position.
Step 7: Flip the stool over, and voila!
I’d test out the stool by gently sitting on it and feeling if there is any give. Test to make sure the legs are tightly screwed in and the chair itself is stable. If it isn’t. You might have to re-position the brackets or the legs. You can also add felt to the bottom of the legs to keep them from slipping.
If you’ve tried this, please tell me! I’ve made these chairs a bunch of times and I’m always looking for ways to improve. I just need an excuse to make another one.
If you want to skip this and just get an awesome beautiful stool asap, here’s some of the best I found at a variety of price points.