Wednesday, April 6, 2011

From DIY Virgin to Second Base :: The Ottoman

Guys! I had the most exciting DIY weekend! Mr. and I are woefully inept at most things Do It Yourself -- I don't know how to sew a button, and before this weekend I'd only admired all of the various Before & Afters on d*sponge.

Happy to report that I successfully tackled two projects I've had on the back burner-- taking up space in the garage-- and although it required much trial and error, I'm pretty pleased with the results.

Project #1 :: The Ottoman


I didn't show a BEFORE because the only "before" would be of the base of the ottoman, which is a 3x3 stainless steel frame which we originally bought for $25 on Craigslist, intending to buy clear glass & use it as a coffee table-- I didn't realize till we got it home just how big 3x3 is for a coffee table. The base has been sitting outside for about a year and Mr. kept threatening to throw it away. 
Here is a quick and dirty of how I made it (apologies for no pics, if you'd really like specifics on step by steps I will be happy to give them) 

Hardware Store x 2, Craft Store x 3 
1. I went to Home Depot and had them cut me a 36 x 36 inch piece of plywood (this required two trips because I mismeasured the first time around--first fail.) 
2. I went to City Craft (amazing! amazing) and bought the awesome (home decor-weight) fabric. I got an extra three inches cut all around, which wound up being just right.
3.  Back at Home Depot, I also bought a staplegun (HOW have I not ever owned a staplegun before? I have been adhering fabric to random surfaces all week. So fun.) We got the Powershot and it works very well.*
4. I then visited Joann's Fabrics and bought 1" foam, which I was intending to cover with batting and then covering with fabric, but once I got it home I realized a) it was too thin, I would have needed 2" at least, and b) I wanted the natural curve of stuffing rather than uniform foam. Does that make sense? Second fail. 
5. Back at Joann's, I returned the foam and stuffing and instead bought polyester stuffing. 

The Construction 
1. I ironed the fabric, which helped with some wrinkles & seams. 
2. This part was a little wonky:: I placed the fabric faceside down, then traced the outline of the 3x3 board, then placed enough stuffing on top to get the process started. I placed the board on top, adhered two staples (enough to keep it in place when flipping over) and then flipped the whole thing over. I stuffed more stuffing in and tried to make it uniform, and then I flipped it AGAIN and stapled the whole thing so that 3 sides were finished. Again I flipped, and stuffed more stuffing into the open side (it looked like an envelope at this point). Then I just finished that side and voila!

I will be honest that I could have used more stuffing, and at some point I think I'll open it back up and beef it up a bit. But for now it works! The cat loves it.

I also-- watch out!-- learned how to spraypaint this weekend, but I will post those pics next! xo!

 ♥ kd

*The only casualty is my right leg, which sustained a staple to the thigh. It was actually not as painful as you'd think, just sort of shocking in the moment :)