Living Room Makeover Continued: The Foot Stool

After doing the first part of the living room makeover, continuing onto the bookshelves, and bringing the entryway into the same scheme, it’s time for the foot stool we use as a coffee table to receive a facelift.

Sometimes I’m seduced by magazines and catalogs that have wonderful, chunky wood coffee tables in front of couches. They look so cool, and some have shelves for storing books and things.
But then I’m watching TV with my kids and we all have our feet up on our footstool and we’re all comfortable with no table edge grinding into our legs, and I’m reminded why we have a footstool for a coffee table.
But see this lovely toile? I am growing weary of seeing the dirt on the side facing the couch courtesy of said feet. And, like, how silly would it be to tell people not to put their feet up on a footstool?
I just have to face that the light colored toile was never the right choice for a foot stool.
Unless I want to wash it every week.
My husband and I actually made this foot stool/coffee table more than ten years ago using some Home Depot legs, a thick piece of plywood, foam and batting. This lovely green (screams 1980’s, doesn’t it? So it must be way more than 10…) was the first layer and I think some other floral design was slipped over before the latest toile cover.
I’m bringing some black touches to my color scheme of white and sage green and also some texture by adding natural burlap and linen. I already had a large piece of burlap from some other project and decided it would be perfect to cover the stool since it’s just the color of dirt. :-)
And here is the stool, newly covered in the burlap, after pounding 100 black upholstery tacks all around the edge to hold it in place.
I’m ready for the cleaner look and like how it turned out, but I was not prepared for how long it took me to pound all those tacks in. Sheesh, it was not easy getting them all evenly spaced (and they’re not, so don’t look closely!), and it took more than two hours and a bruised, painful thumb to get to this point.
Which is not done. If you look at the corner of the stool at the right in the photo above, you can see that I ran out of tacks with only about three more to go.
The same 3 that I bent putting them in.
Always get more than you think you need. Though in my defense, I bought all the store had in the design I wanted.
The corners were the trickiest parts to fold just right, keeping the material tight and yet not so bulky that the tacks wouldn’t hold.
Some corners look better than others, but I figure no one’s going to be looking at all four corners at once, are they?
Just to remind you, here’s a shot of the living room before the makeover (I should point out that it’s just a mini-makeover…no major remodeling will be undertaken here!).
I’m definitely liking it, and the clean lines of stool has inspired me to store the magazines in a basket and not pile them on the stool anymore.
Our feet would usually knock them off, anyway.
Next up are new pillows for the two overstuffed green chairs. I’m thinking a vintage linen I have with some black transfer designs on them…
Make sure to check back to see how they turn out!

This is linked to DIY Day at A Soft Place, Get Your Craft On, Frugal Friday at Shabby Nest, and The Inspired Room.




  1. says

    I love it! I’m looking at more the “ottoman” style myself – with trays on top to hold things when I want. I think you did a fantastic job!

  2. says

    I think the ottoman with the burlap and the tacks looks great. It has a clean line, more modern and yet traditional, too!
    You did a great job. Those tacks are a pain. They always bend, and there are never enough!
    I hope you’ll stop by for a visit sometime.
    Heidi – Heart and Home

  3. Jenelle says

    I think it is beautiful. And I love how you have broken this mini makeover into baby steps like this. It make the process seem a lot less intimidating to someone like me with no clue about decorating. It makes me think even I could do this!

  4. says

    Wow, this is so cool to get all your feedback on projects like this! And I love the thought of $100+, Striving Simply. :-)

    I sure will visit, Heidi.

    Jenelle- I’m so glad! That’s just how I’m able to roll with it this time, I just don’t have a whole week (or even a weekend!) to devote to it, but I do have a few hours here and there. And I know you could…in the end it only has to appeal to you. :-)

  5. says

    Well done. I did like the look of the toile but this is also a more clean current look. Just a thought, If you don’t point out the minor flaws, no one would ever know.
    Have a wonderful day!

  6. says

    It looks fabulous & just for future reference…they do sell tack ‘strips’ where you only have to pound in every few tacks, they are evenly spaced and would have saved you some trouble :( But I think it looks great just as it is! I’m just thinking about that thumb of yours!

  7. says

    Jade – I sometimes like to mention the flaws so that people know it doesn’t always have to be perfect to be enjoyed. :-)

    Kristi – Thank you for thinking about my thumb. :-)
    I did know about the tack strips, but the only store I had time to go to didn’t have them, and I didn’t want to wait. Though I think if I have a tack project again I will order them and just practice patience!

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