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An Ottoman Makeover

    We are making a few changes to the family room to make it feel a little more put together. It is the room we spend the most time in and while we adore the sectional, that is about as far as we’ve come in the room.

    A new chair and matching ottoman are coming this weekend (can’t wait!) and we’re on the hunt for a great tv console for the other side of the room (the side I never show because it not pretty). In the meantime, we shopped our house, did a little coffee table and rug switch and have a new coffee table/ottoman project to share.

    This is how the family room looked two years ago right after we moved in. You’ll notice the two tufted ottomans pushed up against each other to form a big coffee table. The ottomans were super inexpensive (from here) and I always had it in mind to recover them in something that contrasted more with the couch.

    After I took down Christmas last year, I was itching for the room to be a bit cheerier and moved a rug in and stole the coffee table from the living room.

    The room has sat untouched for the past 9 months and we were mostly happy with it. At least this side of the room.

    However, that coffee table just felt so dark and heavy and the rug was getting destroyed in our busy household. (Note: don’t go with a light rug if you have a dog and many children and lots of traffic on it). And with a new carmel-ly brown leather chair and ottoman on the way, we decided it was better to remove the dark table and replace it with something lighter.

    Enter that same ottoman bench.

    It looks a bit worse for wear (a button mission, dirty upholstery from putting up our feet …) so it felt pretty risk-free to recover it. I had a pretty denim blue tablecloth I picked up months ago at HomeGoods that fit perfectly and I liked the idea of bringing in more blue to the room to contrast with the beige of the couch and leather chair.

    My parents were over for the weekend a few weeks ago and we were looking for something creative to do, so my mom and I got to work.

    I unscrewed the base from the top.

    Removed the staples holding the fabric. I just used a flat head screwdriver to pry them up and pliers to pull the staples out if needed. 

    That black fabric covered up the underside with all of the strings for the tufted buttons. I pulled up all of those staples as well. 

    And removed the buttons.

    We considered putting the buttons back on (recovering them first with the new blue fabric), but ultimately decided we liked the simple look without them better.

    My mom and I lined up the fabric along the two ends and pulling it tight, added a few staples to hold. Once we had it lined up, I put lots of staples in it to reduce any pulling or puckering. We continued with the opposite side.

    For the corners, my mom pulled in the corner at a diagonal, then stretched one side down and then the other (similar to hospital corners when making a bed). We had to remove some of the material just to reduce the bulk and then I stapled it all down. 

    Once the corner was done, we continued along the side. Again, the most important part is to pull it tight and keep it in line.

    Once the top was recovered, I screwed it back on to the base. 

    And, voila! A brand new look for the coffee table/ottoman for the price of one table cloth :)

    I’ll share more of the room as we make changes!


    sectional | ottoman | gray rug | white rug | curtains

    14 thoughts on “An Ottoman Makeover”

    1. Let me know what you decide about the rug. I have a rug with a black background that I have dislikes since I bought it, but it hides all the dirt from the kids and pets. I have orders 3 different rugs recently with white or cream backgrounds and they just look off and I fear the first cheetoe that hits the floor. I would love to see a rug post on options for “what we want” (white and gray) versus what really works in a high traffic room.

    2. Love the updated look! Can I ask about the bronze curtain rod holding up your curtains and where it’s from? We need to replace ours and was wondering if yours is secure and steady and can withstand some kids tugging on curtains. Our window looks about the same width as yours. Thanks!

      1. It’s hard to find super long curtain rods! This one is very old (like over 10 years) that we had in our old house and brought to this house. We found it at a local grocery/hardware store, so I don’t really have a great link option. Some have said Ikea has long ones, you could also try Crate + Barrel or CB2.

    3. Wow! So easy and such a great addition to the room. I love simple facelifts. So what did you do with the other ottoman, if they were a pair?

      1. The other ottoman is at the foot of our bed. I’m not sure if it will stay or go or if I’ll recover it? We haven’t done our room yet so when we do, I’ll figure it out :)

    4. Fresh and cute! You did a great job keeping that fabric taut, aligning that stripe, and getting good corners. Gives it a professional look. Doesn’t it feel good to be resourceful (i.e. use what you have) when giving an update?!

    5. Love it! Curious about the new rug – is it shedding much? Considering it but have run into excessive shedding with wool rugs in the past. This lists part synthetic which gives me hope : )

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