Monday, September 23, 2013

The Very Long Upholstery Post....Because I Might Be Just a Little Bit Crazy

Inexpensive furniture, if purchased new tends to fall apart. The moment you think, "Wow this couch is really holding up great despite persistent mauling by my children," is the moment things start going down hill. The ottoman, which served as a place to rest our feet an a makeshift trampoline, was the first piece to go. Etsy provided some lovely vintage Vontrapp family-esque upholstery material, and the tiny home improvement section at Target provided the rest. And because while I had the staple gun out I thought I better put it to good use and reupholster my king size headboard and footboard....the dumbest idea ever, but both projects turned out great and my right hand was only numb from my evil Target stapler for a few days. 

Draping the fabric over the old ottoman gives a very deceiving view of the road ahead. The fabric instantly brightens up the room and it just seems like a nip here and a tuck there, then staple, staple, staple and viola! all done. Nope. Not with this ottoman. Because I don't own a sewing machine and I had a deep desire to not be a Pinterest fail, I rethought my plan. 
I decided to remove the foam pad on my existing ottoman and throw it on top of a Salvation Army coffee table (which was $40! Yes, not a bad price but not a deal either. LA thrift stores are too savvy for their own good). 
Upholstery buttons have tiny teeth that make the fabric stay put but also tear off the skin of your thumbs. Beware. :) 
Not too bad when you only have six buttons
I drilled holes in the coffee table before I covered it with foam and batting. Once all that was pinned down I laid the vintage fabric on top and attached the buttons with an enormous upholstery needle. 
I'm not going to lie. The ottoman sat like this for 2 days. I had done the buttons and attached the fabric to the sides but had no freaking idea how to do the corners. I deeply hated the hospital bed single fold, so I played with it and this is what I came up with. 

And Onward....
I was totally empowered by the completion of the ottoman so one trip to the fabric store armed me with 10 yards of grey linen upholstery fabric and I was ready to go again. 
Again, cheap furniture mixed with children. This project was bigger but a bit easier, since the foam was already in place and I just removed the existing fabric. 

Side note: plywood is much easer to staple than solid wood. Seriously. 
Headboard (above) and footboard (below) covered in batting and ready for fabric. 

Probably don't need this many staples but I am nothing if not thorough. 
Nifty little ebay purchase called curve-ease. Means I was able to a more finished, no staple seam. 

My little helper gave up and fell asleep. :) 
Once the buttons were in the headboard went really fast. Just stapled the fabric to the back, and since the stapley side faces the wall no need to make it look pretty. 

Finished product!