Friday, 17 April 2015

A Crocheted Stool Cover



On one of my many (many, many) recent trips to IKEA I bought two Frosta stools. One for the dining room to be used as extra seating should we need it and the other for the porch, to go next to the shoe rack. Whenever my children put their shoes on, they like to sit on either the bottom step of the stairs or right in front of the front door while they battle with laces and straps. Both places are inconvenient for rushed morning exits from the house and I hoped that the stool might encourage a happier, less shouty, departure on school mornings. 

I digress.

So, I had my stools (£8 each, a bargain) but thought them a bit dull and for a long time had fancied making some circular covers. I'd seen a pattern in my Granny Squares book and thought I'd have a go. The pattern is essentially a circle working out from the centre (very similar to a mandala I would imagine) with decreases so that it fits around the stool. If you were reasonably good at crochet you could probably turn any mandala into a stool cover by adding a few rows decreasing, then a few more straight rows to create "sides". 

I thought I'd share how I made mine as, while I liked the pattern on the circular stool top, I found the rest of the pattern (you know, like how to make it actually stay on the stool) a bit lacking in details. 

Make your circle, stopping when it is about 1 cm smaller than stool. 


This is so that your cover remains nice and tight. (Baggy, saggy crochet is as appealing to me as a too-short scarf.)


Then make your decreases, following whatever pattern you're using or just making it up as you go along if you're cleverer than me. Your cover will now look a bit like a floppy fabric tray or bowl.


I found that my stool cover would sit on the stool fine like this, but would slip off the minute anyone sat on it, and so I wanted to make mine more secure. 

Attaching the cover to the stool seemed the safest thing and so I placed the stool cover on the stool and, using safety pins like below, marked where the four stool legs would go.


I worked a row of double crochet stitches between these safety pin markers, leaving the ends long.


Then I used the long ends to tie the cover tightly around each stool leg. 


I didn't know what to do about the dangling thread ends and darning them in seemed like a waste of time as I would inevitably want to remove and wash the stool cover at some point. Washi tape secured them neatly to the underside of the legs.


And there you have one very secure stool cover. It might slip and move a little when you sit on it, but it won't fall off and, more importantly, it wont be baggy.


As well as making the covers, I also jazzed up my stools with some paint, spraying the feet of one pink, and painting the other white. 

How to spray the feet:

First decide which area you want to paint, wrapping masking tape carefully and securely around each foot, making sure they're all the same height. Then cover your entire stool apart from the parts you want to spray paint. This stuff gets everywhere. I used a combination of old tea towels, kitchen paper and masking tape to wrap mine up. To get the coverage I wanted, my project took four light coats of paint, with a couple of hours drying time between each one.

When the paint is dry, unwrap your stool and carefully peel away the masking tape on each foot. You should be rewarded with a nice clean line. Ahhh, so satisfying!


Like peeling off a plaster, but prettier.


The pink-footed stool lives in the dining room, while this one below is for the porch. I painted the whole stool white (two coats of undercoat, two of white eggshell) and used the same shade of green as the one on the walls, with white, pink and black for the cover. 


It looks great in the porch, next to that shoe rack, and is so far being used as somewhere to dump stuff like bags and lunchboxes while the children continue to put their shoes on right in front of the door or sitting on the bottom step of the stairs. 




38 comments:

  1. They're beautiful! Very cheery xx

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  2. Beautifully done, clever you. And I do hope it makes the morning exit of the house a little smoother! Mine all sit in the middle of the hall in everyone's way as well, then a fight usually breaks out. Sigh. Have a lovely weekend Gillian. CJ xx

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  3. It looks gorgeous - well done! Jane x

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  4. That is so pretty. I've a couple of IKEA stools myself that I think will have to get that treatment.

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  5. Very pretty! The shoe basket lid gets sat on here with the result we now need a new basket. Broken willow is not a good look ;). Bee xx

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  6. I love them. What a great idea to paint the legs too. I know exactly what you mean about having a place for putting on shoes. Mine both sit on the floor in the foyer (we have a big rug there) or on a small bench in the foyer. Thanks for sharing how you made the covers too, they're very clever.

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  7. Your stool is just gorgeous! It makes me wonder where I could put one, heehee. Actually...it might make a good little side table next to the bed in our teeny tiny bedroom! Is it wonderful, making your new house your home?

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  8. They look lovely against the green of your porch. Oh how I wish I could crochet, one day maybe when I have the time and patience to teach myself. In the meantime I will admire yours.

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  9. What an absolute bargain for £8 and a little creativity - they're gorgeous and the one in the porch looks stunning against the green wall. xx

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  10. You transformed a (quite boring, let's be honest, sorry Ikea) footstool into a fantastic design object ! Love the pink "socks" you gave the stool :-) !

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  11. You should sell this idea to IKEA!

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  12. Absolutely love it. Doesn't the pink look wonderful with the green. I'm afraid my first crochet cushion is baggy! Xxx

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  13. These are so brilliant! I can't decide which I love best but the stool cover against the green wall looks fab doesn't it? Thank you so much for all the extra details too, most useful. I've been looking for an excuse to get one of those stools, just so I could pimp it up for ages! Now I really, really one!!

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  14. They're really really lovely and the paint treatments just finish them off to perfection. I love that green wall even more! Have a great weekend, Sarah xo

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  15. Most attractive and very useful, too! Pink and green is a classic combination - after all, it's good enough for roses and carnations! Ingrid Orens refers to the crochet as "socks," which is lovely - I think of the two crochet pieces as "berets"!
    Margaret P

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  16. gorgeous. my children sit on the bottom step of the stairs too.........

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  17. These are great-I keep looking at them-usually in the corner of someone's blog photos! I have been wondering about the 'keeping it on the stool issue' & all I came up with was heavy duty staples so thanks for giving me a far better idea! Just need a stool now!

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  18. What a brilliant idea to brighten up your stools and coming up with a great way to stop them slipping off. Great paint job too. Xx

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  19. I love your crocheted stool covers. The colours are so pretty. They're a really lovely way to add some handmade homey touches in a new house. X

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  20. Great idea. I keep making crochet circles, so I should really try this.

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  21. Love these! Really must learn to crochet!

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  22. You did a terrific job and they now look like a piece of art not just a plain ole stool. Love the design. You are brilliant!
    Meredith

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  23. AGGHGH! Against the green it is awesome, but I do love green. Jo x

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  24. Lovely colours - especially the one against the gorgeous green wall. I think you're very brave to have a wall that colour!

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  25. An awesome makeover! My fingers are crossee your kids will love them too and there will be less drama in the mornings!

    Take care Anne
    http://www.crochetbetweenworlds.net

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  26. Looks amazing! I've got a stool that needs a makeover. You've inspired me to give it a go.
    Jacqui xx

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  27. Both gorgeous but I think the one for the porch is my favourite - love that green! x

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  28. Hey Gillian,
    Lovely, lovely, lovely. I'm liking the green wall very much too.
    Leanne xx

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  29. This is gorgeous, Gillian! My favorite colors - pink and green. And the stool is fabulous!

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  30. What a great and personal touch to your new home!

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  31. Nicely done!

    I have my crochet hooks out again ... so far it's not going well!

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  32. What a couple of cool stools!! Good tip with the washi tape :-)

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  33. Those covers are wonderful! My two sit on the bottom of the stairs or right in a doorway to put on their shoes! I love that green!! xx

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  34. Oh this is absolutely wonderful! I have taken myself on a crochet odyssey in recent months and am currently designing my first ever shawl. It's hard to describe the thrill - I think it's working!

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  35. Beautiful. Both the crochet covers, and the painted legs. Fab! X

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