Flip over an aging chair & upgrade it into a DIY that's unrecognizable

Some curbside finds are obvious steals that need only a little love to make them like new again. Others require a hefty dose of imagination and elbow grease to turn them into true treasures. The transformation of this aging chair to a chic stool proves that almost anything can be reborn with a bit of TLC. Nothing beats the sense of accomplishment you feel after completing a thorough furniture upgrade. This adorable stool to go with your vanity table or in your closet will serve as a constant reminder of your trash-to-treasure triumph.
A few tips and tricks can help keep the cost of this project down. If you don’t already own the necessary power tools, borrow them from a friend or check if the local hardware store has a tool rental program. Buying upholstery foam is also on the pricey side, so try using the old foam from the chair, or salvage foam from another piece of dilapidated furniture. Finally, check for cute fabric scraps and chalk paint already lingering in the craft closet before you run out to the store for new supplies.
- An old chair
- Screwdriver
- Electric jigsaw
- Random orbit sander
- Small pen sander
- Chalk paint, white
- Paintbrush
- Needle-nose pliers
- Upholstery foam, 2 inches thick
- Marker
- Scissors
- Fabric, palm frond print
- Liner fabric, white
- Staple gun
- Staples
- Electric screwdriver
- Drill bit
- Phillips-head bit
- Phillips-head screws, four
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1. Turn the chair upside down. Use the screwdriver to remove the screws that hold the cushion in place.
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2. Use the electric jigsaw to remove the back of the chair from the legs.
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Discard the back, and place the legs right side up.
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3. Sand the legs with the random orbit sander to remove old finish or paint.
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4. Use the pen sander with a rounded bit to sand any grooves, tight spaces or pieces that have a lot of detail.
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5. After sanding, paint the legs with the chalk paint.
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6. While the legs are drying, use the needle-nose pliers to remove any tacks, nails, and staples from the bottom of the cushion.
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Remove all fabric and foam, then discard (unless you're reusing the foam). Keep the wooden base.
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7. Set the wooden base on top of the 2-inch upholstery foam.
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Draw an outline of the base on the foam, then cut out.
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8. Cut a piece of printed fabric and white liner that's at least 6 inches wider and longer than the wooden base.
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9. Lay the fabric print-side down on the table. Place the liner on top of it. Place the foam on the liner, then the wooden base on top of the foam.
10. Pull the edge of the printed fabric and liner up and over the bottom edge of the wooden base. Pull the fabric taut, then staple it several times to the wood along the edge.
11. Pull the fabric up and over the right edge, then staple once or twice at the corner. Repeat for the left side. Trim any excess fabric along the bottom edge.
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12. Repeat steps 10 and 11 for the top edge of the base.
13. Pull the fabric up and over one of the remaining sides, pull taut and staple several times along the edge. Trim any excess fabric and repeat for the last side.
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14. Turn the finished cushion right side up and check for imperfections.
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15. Turn the cushion upside down again, then place the chair legs upside down on top of the wooden base.
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16. Use a drill bit on an electric screwdriver to drill guide holes for the screws into the base.
17. Insert a screw into each hole, then tighten with a Phillips-head bit on the electric screwdriver.
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18. Turn the finished stool right side up and enjoy.
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