Paper Mache Tree Stump Stool


Add some whimsy to your home with this paper mache DIY tree stump stool. (I did paper mache in grammar school is this is pretty much the same.) We provide a lot of step by step visuals on our site (too many for here) plus a printable instruction packet. We'll just show the basics here.
SUPPLIES
5 gallon pail Empty pails can be purchased at hardware stores and in the Walmart paint section.
Small piece of wood (1 square foot of MDF (medium-density fiberboard or plywood)
2" flat head nut and bolt
Jigsaw (to cut wood)
Drill (for center hole)
Newspaper
White glue
Paint - dark brown, light brown, tan, black
Foil
Toilet paper tubes
Masking tape
Clear satin or gloss finish, spray or brush on
A 5 gallon pail and a piece of wood traced on the bottom is the stool base.
A 5 gallon pail and a circle piece of wood traced for the seat part. Turn the bucket upside down and place wood piece on what is the bottom of the bucket but will be the top of the stool.
Drill a hole through the center to fit the bolt through. Insert bolt and tighten nut onto the bolt from beneath (The nut should sink into wood and be flush with top of wood.
Gather toilet paper rolls and stuff them with newspaper - We used eight
Choose where you want your branches and thick roots and use masking tape to apply toilet paper tubes to the bucket. Rip off a 1 to 2 foot piece of foil and loosely roll it up into a tube - press foil into seams between toilet paper tubes and bucket to smooth out connections and fill gaps. Tape into place.
Cut newspaper into strips - most of ours were larger strips, about 1-2" x 5-6", but we also cut up some 1"x2" pieces for the areas that had more dips, grooves and edges because they lie flatter.
Dip newspaper into mixture, wipe excess off both sides and apply to entire surface of bucket and tubes, layering over one another as you go - this is the most time consuming part as it took about 2 hours (we only did 1 layer). Try to make it as smooth as possible.
Dip newspaper into mixture, wipe excess off both sides and apply to entire surface of bucket and tubes, layering over one another as you go - this is the most time consuming part as it took about 2 hours (we only did 1 layer). Try to make it as smooth as possible.
As mentioned above there are a variety of steps and instructions that were too much to add here. View our site post link at the bottom for full details and photos plus a printable instruction sheet.
Using watered down brown, take a thinner brush and draw a line around the top of the stool, about " in from the edge.
Finishing touches. This really does not require a lot of artistic ability. It just looks like it does! Check out our link below for more.

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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Have a question about this project?

1 question
  • Patty
    on Oct 1, 2016

    Could a full grown man sit on one of these? (200#'s+). I think they would be cool for a game room but only if they could be used by the adults. I know for kids they would work. Great idea and lovely work by the way!

    • Leah M
      on Oct 3, 2016

      I see people sitting on these (not decorated) all the time. Even very large men.

    • Mjkoehler2000
      on Oct 23, 2016

      They will hold a good 300# person.

    • It's the base that would determine that. Remember they are made from those large paint bucket things. I would they would hold a fairly heavy person but the problem would be they are low to the floor. Might be a bit uncomfortable for someone that size.

Join the conversation

3 of 29 comments
  • Diane
    on Oct 7, 2016

    I love this idea. What could you use to make paper mache' rocks? Balloons are too uniform in shape. I need some good sized rocks. Any ideas?

  • Laura
    on Nov 10, 2016

    I mad a large cactus usg this method and it was 10 y o and people still think its real in holds up well

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