How to Recover a Round Footstool

Written by jean breeding
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How to Recover a Round Footstool
Round footstools are versatile furniture pieces. (Living room image by MAXFX from

Round footstools are versatile furniture pieces. If they are large enough, they can double as low tables instead of traditional coffee tables, or they can be used as additional seating. You can customise your round footstool to match your decor by recovering it yourself. Your cover can have a tailored, upholstered look if you attach the cover to the bottom of the footstool with tacks or staples. If you desire a more romantic or feminine look, you can make a cover with a gathered skirt.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Newspaper or other paper for pattern
  • Pencil
  • Tape measure
  • Scissors
  • Fabric
  • Piping (optional)
  • Pins
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread
  • Iron
  • Furniture tacks/hammer or staples/staple gun

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    Measuring and Cutting

  1. 1

    Place your paper over the top of your footstool and carefully trace the circular top. Draw another line 1/2 inch outside your original circle. This is your pattern with a 1/2-inch seam allowance. Cut out your pattern.

  2. 2

    Measure the circumference of your footstool and then measure the height of the side of your stool. This is the measurement for the band that will cover the side of your footstool. If you are going to tack the cover to the bottom of the footstool, add 2 inches to the height measurement so you have enough to tack at the bottom.

  3. 3

    Measure the distance between the bottom of the band of your footstool and the floor and add 2 inches. Use this measurement if you will put a skirt on your cover.

  4. 4

    Pin your circular pattern to the right side of your fabric, centring the design if your fabric is a pattern. Cut around the pattern.

  5. 5

    Cut the band fabric using the height and circumference measurements. Depending on the size of your footstool, you may need to cut more than one piece to go all the way around. Add 1 inch to the circumference measurement for your 1/2-inch seam allowance.

  6. 6

    Pin and stitch piping to the right side of your circular top if piping is desired. Stitch ends of the band together and press seam open. Pin band to top, right sides together. To avoid puckers, clip the seam allowance of the top about every 1/2 inch. Stitch band and top together. Turn your cover right side out and check the fit. Make adjustments as needed.

    Finishing Options

  1. 1

    Turn the stool over and carefully tack or staple the cover to the underside of the stool if you are attaching the cover to the bottom. Make sure your cover is centred and pull it taut as you staple or tack. A good technique is to tack two opposite points and then work around, keeping the tension even. If your stool has legs, clip the seam allowance to accommodate them and staple or tack around them.

  2. 2

    If you are putting a skirt on your cover, do not attach the band to the bottom of the stool, but remove the cover after adjusting fit. Cut strips the length of the drop measurement plus 1 1/2 inches for hem and seam allowance. Cut enough strips to equal 1 1/2 times the circumference of the stool.

  3. 3

    Stitch strips together. Turn up 1/2 inch on the bottom edge and then repeat. Machine stitch hem. Run a gathering thread within the seam allowance of the top edge and gather the skirt to fit the band, pinning right sides together. Stitch skirt to band, press, and turn right side out.

Tips and warnings

  • Solid fabrics and prints work best for this project.
  • Additional trim may be glued over seams if piping is not desired.

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