Monday, July 6, 2015

A Striped Stool

grain sack stripe
In between a parade and a picnic and some fun with friends and family over the weekend, I did a quick makeover on World's Ugliest Stool.
before
This is what the sad little stool looked like when I bought it at a thrift store a couple weeks ago.
 before
Yes, I actually paid money for it -- although, in my defense, it was only $2.
removing the old upholstery
I liked the stool itself. The crazy, stained velourlike upholstery, not so much.
removing the old upholstery
I raided the husband's toolbox for a screwdriver and a pliers and stripped off the ugliness in about 5 minutes.
I considered leaving the stool unupholstered. But as I was planning to actually sit on it on a somewhat regular basis, I thought a little padding would be nice.
foam
I would have reused the original foam if  I could have, but this is what it looked like: lots of random little pieces. The poor stool. Not only was it ugly on the outside, it was ugly on the inside, too.
foam
Fortunately, this stool is going to replace a different one in my kitchen that is falling apart and is destined to be thrown out. So I unupholstered the old one and cannibalized the foam from it.
Then I found a scrap of drop cloth left over from some pillows I made. (I blogged about them here if you're interested.)
reupholstering a stool
I wanted to paint green stripes on the fabric -- to match the green pieces of wood under the seat -- but I didn't have the right shade in my paint box, so I attempted a custom mix with what I had on hand: a 10-year-old tester pot of Glidden Willow Leaf, a bottle of Christmassy green craft paint, another bottle of white and a bit of leftover textile medium (to keep the paint from cracking).

I'm not sure if I needed the textile medium (as I don't plan to put the fabric in the washing machine), but I already had it, so I figured I might as well use it. (Better safe than sorry.)
grain sack stripe
After mixing the paint, I taped off the center stripe and painted it.
grain sack stripe
Once the center stripe was dry, I taped off a narrower stripe on each side of it. No measuring done here; the stripes were just eyeballed. (I sure wish the eyeballing method worked better for sewing and woodworking.)
grain sack stripe
 When I was done painting the narrow stripes...
grain sack stripe
... I pulled up the tape.
grain sack stripe
 The greens were not a perfect match, but close enough.
grain sack stripe
After ironing the fabric to heat set the paint and textile medium, I centered the fabric on the foam and centered the foam on the seat.
 Then I flipped the stool over and started stapling the fabric and foam to the underside of the seat.
I trimmed off the excess foam and fabric as I stapled. Drop cloth fabric frays like crazy, so I had to be really careful when trimming it.
Fray Check
Luckily I had some Fray Check on hand. I squeezed the Fray Check onto the raw edges as I trimmed the fabric to prevent it from unraveling any more.
Hopefully it holds up.
my cat
Here's a gratuitous shot of Calvin, who was sitting in the driveway about three feet behind me the entire time I was working on this project. He's a senior citizen these days, so he doesn't do any hunting or prowling anymore; he just sits and watches me work.
grain sack stripe
 Here's the finished stool.
grain sack stripe
It was a pretty simple project that took me less than an hour from start to finish, but it's a big improvement over what it looked like before.

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