DIY Recovering a Gothic Footstool

When it comes to relaxing at the end of a long day stomping around Hell, there’s not much that can beat sitting down in your favorite chair and putting your hooves up for a spell…

Unfortunately for me, I’ve been in dire need of a good footrest for quite some time.  Oh, sure, a subservient mortal down on all fours can do in a pinch, but let’s be honest, you guys have a tendency to wiggle and whine if left unfed for too long.

No, what I need is a non-sentient footstool.

I had been casually looking for ages, trying to find the perfect one but kept coming up short.  Then, a few weeks ago, I discovered this interesting bit of iron at the local thrift store.

While it might not have the cushion for my feet I was wanting, it was the perfect place to start.

The first thing I had to do was add a little gothic flair to it in the form of a few well-placed skulls.  I used a quick kicking 2-part epoxy resin and a silicone mold.

The resin, once mixed, takes less than 10 minutes to cure and in under 1 hour, I had four perfectly sized skulls.

I used more resin to help secure them to the base of my footstool at equal intervals.

Now onto making the cushion.

I measured a piece of plywood, making sure it fit snugly within the frame of my footstool while still leaving about ½” all around the edge to compensate for the fabric I was going to cover it with later.

I then secured two layers of 1” high-density foam to the wood using industrial strength fabric glue (available at your local craft store). You can also just pick up 2” high-density foam and skip the layering if you want.

Next came a thick cloud of poly-fill batting.  Again, a good spray of fabric glue helps to keep it all in place.

The fabric I chose to cover my footstool in was a sheer, material called Devoré Velvet.  Sometimes also called burnout velvet, Devoré is a technique where a chemical process is applied to the velvet in a pattern to dissolve the fibers to create a semi-transparent design.  It also meant that you would be able to see the poly-fill batting through the fabric wherever there was a burnout.

Because I didn’t want that look, I first applied a layer of thicker, solid grey headliner material.  I stretched the fabric over the footstool insert and then used a heavy duty staple gun to secure the fabric down to the backside of the wood.

To do this, first lay your fabric out, wrong side up.  Center your poly-fill covered foam board over it, making sure it’s right in the middle.  You’ll want to make sure you have at least 3” of fabric all the way around the edge of your board.

To help keep your fabric from shifting while you staple, press down on the seat while you stretch the fabric up over one side.  I found kneeling on the board was the easiest method.

When recovering a cushion like this, the easiest way to make sure your fabric stays taut and even is to start at one point in the middle of one of your sides and then work to the corner, spacing your staples about an inch or so apart.

Don’t worry if your stapling isn’t too pretty.  Luckily this is the underside of the footstool and nobody will really see it.

I found the best way to make my fabric stay smooth and taut was to work in an alternating pattern like this:

Start at point A and begin stapling from the center to the right corner.  Once you get to the right corner, return to the center on point A and begin stapling to the left corner.

Repeat this pattern with side B, again starting in the center and working your way to each corner.  Repeat with sides C and D.

As you do the corners, fold them over like you would if you were folding wrapping paper around a package.  Make sure as you fold, that you try to stay consistent with how you layer your fabric.  For example, on my footstool, I always made sure to tuck sides A and B under C and D.

Trim off the excess and staple the edges flat.

Now that you have your first round of staples down, go back and add another round of staples between your 1” spaced staples from before.  This just helps ensure that the fabric stays in place and doesn’t move.

Your covered cushion should now look like this:

If you’re double layering your fabric like I did, make sure that your top layer of fabric is approximately 1 inch larger than your first layer on all sides and then simply repeat the same steps as above.

Flip your cushion over, brush it off, and place it into the footstool frame and check to make sure it fits properly.

Now let’s tackle that footstool frame.

While I didn’t mind the original gold look too much, I wasn’t happy with how bright and white the skulls were.  To help blend them into the overall look of my aesthetic, I gave the whole thing two coats of black spray paint made specifically for metal projects.

Once the paint was dry, I did a quick once over with some pewter and silver rub-n-buff wax to help highlight the details.

Finally, drop the cushion into place and step back to admire all your hard work.

Now, while I made this specifically for MY use…it’s obvious from these photos that someone else thought it was for her…

…but really, who is going to argue with that face?

For even more Gothic DIY Goodies you can make to spoil your favorite Hellhound, why not check out our Howl-o-ween Cozy Cauldron?

 

 

 

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