Reupholster a Shabby Footstool Into a Beautiful New Piece

2 Materials
2 Hours

Want a footstool you can be proud of? Here’s a simple project on how to reupholster a shabby footstool and give it a new lease of life.

This was a £6 charity shop find and could have been brought back to life with a wash and a nice stencil as it was in good condition.

However, I had some bee-a-utiful fabric that I’d be waiting to use on something and this was the time.

Here’s another project with the same fabric if you can’t get enough of it either!


There were hundreds of staples attaching the dust cover (the white fabric underneath) and the yellow material. Fortunately, the foam was in good condition so I didn’t need to replace it.

The legs simply screwed off which was the quickest part of the process. It gave me false hope that this would be a really quick project, but I wasn’t yet aware of the staple mountain I would encounter.

I hoped I’d be able to remove the staples with tools I already had such as chisels and brute force (and ignorance). Alas, the staples had other ideas.

I ended up buying a heavy duty staple remover and got there in the end.

Down to the final two, so close!

Getting a new look

I painted the legs in a charcoal colour. It’s not a true black but still complements the bees on the fabric nicely.

My cat Pixel came to inspect the new paint job, she likes it, this is her delighted face.

To cut the fabric to size, I made sure it overlapped the bottom by about an inch/3 cm.

You don’t need the nice fabric on the underside as no one will see it, so save your fabric (and money) for the visible areas.

Not the most professional of set ups (these are jewellery making pins), but it did the job and kept the fabric in place.

By pinning it, I could see that the bees were in line before I stapled the fabric. This is helpful anyway if you don’t have spare hands to pull the fabric tight with.

The best order to staple the fabric is top, bottom, side, side. Basically, staple one side and then do the opposite side. Corners are done last and can be pleated or folded in to keep it neat.

I didn’t take a photo of the new dust cover but rest assured it’s there. Doing an excellent job of being inconspicuous.

Remember to cut out holes in the fabric to screw the legs back on.

The final piece

And here it is. A simple project but with a charming result.

If you love this bee fabric as much as I do, here’s another project using it where I explain how to use black wax.

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

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