Easy weekend craft: upcycle an old stool

This do-it-yourself stool is so cool, you’ll invite friends over just to show it off (and sit on it, of course).

Photo by Olga Majrowska

Most basements hide an old forgotten stool, and most closets have more than one frumpy sweater. Both items probably should have been cleared out long ago. But because they’re still hanging around … why not marry the two and re-purpose them into a stylish stool you’ll actually use?

Braided stools have a modern-mod 3D effect that will liven up any classic room, and match even the coolest of designer lofts. If you happen to have a sweater similar to one of the Pantone colors for 2016—a baby pink Rose Quartz or a powder blue Serenity— you’ll be so on trend your teenager might actually think you’re cool again. (OK, maybe not. But we’ll think you’re cool.)

You will need:

an old stool
a large sweater
a piece of upholstery foam (we recommend at least 1″ thick)
a tacker
scissors, needle, and thread
sandpaper, masking tape, and white spray paint (optional)

STEP 1:

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

If the legs of your stool need a little refreshing sand them delicately with fine sandpaper to remove blemishes or an old stain.

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

STEP 2:

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

Draw long straight lines on the foam and cut separate braid pieces with scissors (we made 14 strips, 1.2″ wide, 1.2″ deep and 16″ long). The number of pieces depends on the size of the stool, ours was approximately 12″ wide. You also need to remember to make them long enough to be able to fold them underneath the stool on both sides.

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

STEP 3:

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

Cut the sweater into rectangles 16″ long and wide enough to cover the foam pieces tightly (ours were approximately 4″ wide). The sweater must be large enough to provide enough cover for all your foam pieces.

STEP 4:

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

Sew the sweater pieces together around all the foam braids.

STEP 5:

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

Tack the endings underneath the stool attaching them on two conjoined edges, as if the stool was a square or a loom, not a circle. Only then will you be able to braid them properly.

STEP 6:

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

DIY braided stool that’s uniquely cool

Photo by Olga Majrowska

Place masking tape at about 2″ from the base of the stool legs and spray the ends with white paint, and let dry.

Now give yourself a pat on the back, and take a load off on your new stool.

Agnieszka Pogorzelska
Agnieszka Pogorzelska
Agnieszka Pogorzelska is a Polish fashion stylist with 13 years' experience at major fashion magazines (including Elle and InStyle) turned DIY expert. She loves hunting for vintage furniture with flaws, can't live without fresh flowers, and creates cute PogoPony bag charms in her free time. Her own apartment gets a makeover at least once a month and her basement is constantly filled with trash that will surely be turned into treasures. .

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