TSP Recovers Barstools

April 20, 2015

Happy Monday Folks!!!  It is now officially spring here in good ole’ NC!! And along with spring, comes spring cleaning. UGH!!!  Well, to be perfectly honest, I am more about organizing and “pretty-fiying” than I am cleaning. One of my major projects over the last few months was cleaning out all of the baby stuff from my house. Now that my kids are getting older (3 and 5), there is no more need for booster seats, high chairs, infant toys, etc. It felt soooo good to get a lot of that clutter out of my house. But, I got a few surprises in the process. Exhibit A: The seat cushions on my bar stools. This is where their booster seats were placed for the last 2-4 years (depending on which kid’s chair). 

Ahhh, my pretty wrought iron bar stools with off white cushions. The ideal piece of furniture that every newly wed couple picks out before children even cross their mind. I mean what were we thinking with that cushion color?? I know! I like it and it’s the right price. When you are first married and decorating your house, you NEVER think of what kinds of damage children can do to your property. I guess that is why we bought off white leather couches too. We were smart, huh?? Yeah, we thought so until an un-named toddler attacked a section of the recliner with brown sharpie. Fun times! So back to the chairs. Here is a close up of those cushions.


And yes, my prim and proper, diva girl child is the messiest. You can see which chair was her’s. After a few tears escaped and before I showed my husband the damage, I had a fantastic idea. I could put my craftiness to use, and recover these chairs!!!  I went to a few local fabric stores and searched around online at my favorite fabric shops, but I didn’t see anything that was the right color and the right design that would please my husband and I. And now before you all get on me about my husband being in the fabric picking out process, you have to understand. My husband is a practical, engineer type man. We seriously took 2 years to find just the right light fixtures for our dining room. It is a process. Normally the process involves me giving up and just agreeing with what he likes. I know, role reversal here. But I have my ways of getting what I want. Sneaky woman tactics!!!! And since I know fabric, I could steer him a bit.

Anyway, back to the chairs. I had all but given up on finding the right fabric and was almost ready to just buy new chairs. (eeekkks, there goes the pay check). That was until I found another decorator fabric source. One I would have never though of before! Raise your hand (or leave a comment) if you knew that minted.com carried decorator fabric??? I knew they did stationary and cards, I have received a few from friends for various occasions. When I saw their decorator fabric selection I was in love and just knew I had to order some. And what I loved even more is the fact that all of the fabric is designed by independent artists. So it isn’t some huge global designers like what you find in your chain fabric stores. This is designed from a person like me, who has a passion for design, it is personal and has a story of it’s own. It took my husband and I a week or so to agree on the fabric. I loved this amazing floral and red. He disagreed, lol. So he picked out the basic fabric to cover the stools and I picked out the fun fabrics so I can do a table runner for our dinette set. Compromise at it’s best.

My package finally got here, in just under a week.  Here’s a little PSA (public service announcement), fabric mail is like Christmas for me. I wait by the window, bouncing up and down on my toes, just waiting for that package to show up. I was expecting a box. I did order 3 yards of decorator fabric. I knew what the decorator fabric, a.k.a.. duck cloth, at my local fabric store looked and felt like. So I was super surprised when my package showed up in a bag. I was even more surprised at the weight. When I opened the bag, I found my fabric nice and neat in a large zip topped bag, along with all of these gorgeous print media pages. Well minted.com is known for their stationary, right? Since all of my fabric fit so neatly in such a small space, I was leery that the cuts were wrong. So I measured and everything was right. The difference between this fabric and the duck cloth you get at the store is amazing. After feeling the minted.com fabric, I don’t think I ever want to use duck cloth again. It is a dense weave that has a smooth hand. At first when looking at it, you think it is just regular cotton. But then upon examination you see just how nice this fabric really is. I am so pleased!!!  And the package even came with a separate card for care instructions. How many other online fabric shops send care instructions for their fabric?? Nice touch, huh?


Now that I had my fabric, I was ready to get started. I did recruit my hubby to help me in the beginning. I made him do all the hard labor. I had him remove the cushions from the stools and then made him go out to his shop to get me all the tools I needed. Yeah, like going to his tool mancave was hard work. Once he brought the supplies in, I got them settled in my sewing studio and came up with an action plan.

Here is a list of tools I used:

– Flat head screw driver

– Wire Cutters

– Staple gun and staples (since I am not very handy with tools, my husband loaded 2 staple guns for me – so sweet of him)

– Adhesive Spray

– Fabric to cover cushions

So the first thing I did to get started was use the flat head screw driver and wire cutters to remove all 150 million staples. That was the hardest part of the whole recovering ordeal.

See I wasn’t lying – 150 million little staples, and this was just one cushion!! I then carefully cleaned up all of the staples, making sure I didn’t drop any. You know a staple in the foot equals a trip to the doctor and a shot in the booty. I carefully removed the backing on the bottom of the cushion and then the fabric on top. The fabric was spray glued on, so I removed slowly and carefully as to not rip or damage the foam. I then laid the old fabric out flat and used it as a template to cut the new fabric.

Ewwww, look how dirty!! I am almost embarrassed!!  After cutting the template out in my new fabric, you need to prep your cushion foam. I sprayed a light layer of adhesive on top of the foam.

I then carefully laid the new fabric cover on top of the foam. Making sure it was even all the way around, with even amounts of hang over on all four sides, and gently pressed the fabric onto the cushion, making sure to smooth any wrinkles.

Now this next part is a great time to get out any pent up hostility or stress or frustration. Your kid talked back or had a tantrum? You waited on hold for 45 minutes for the insurance agent? You drove 20 minutes to school with a screaming child? Your hubby has to work late? Perfect! After smoothing the fabric on top of the cushion and getting out all of the wrinkles, flip that bad boy over. Take your staple gun in your dominant hand. Pull up the edge of the fabric and pull it taught to the center and let that staple gun rip!!  If you have weak hands, you may have to pull the fabric and then use the staple gun to hold it in place, and then use both hands to squeeze. Now, wasn’t that a rush? All that power coming from that staple gun? Great stress relief!!!  I stapled all four corners first, to make sure I stabilized the fabric and had it evenly pulled around. And then I went to town. I think I used more staples than was originally there. I had a rough morning. Once you have the fabric all the way secured, turn the cushion over and make sure it is even and looks fabulous. Once you are happy, then put the wood covering fabric back in place. And staple it down in the same fashion you did the fabric cover.

And guess what?? You are done!!! One down, one more to go! At least for me, I only had 2 stools to cover.

Now doesn’t that look pretty??? It only took about a week after I finished covering them for my husband to put the cushions back on the stools. But omigosh. They turned out so pretty!!!


Next up – Table runner out of the other gorgeous fabric I got from www.minted.com.

I hope you enjoy this little barstool recovering demo, with the amazing decorator fabric from Minted.com!!! Let me know if you have any questions.

Until Next Time,



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