Table to Ottoman TransformationBy
Ottomans are great accent pieces in almost any design. But sometimes finding just the right style and size is challenging. Here’s how you can transform a table into an ottoman for a completely custom look.
We were on the search for a specific sized ottoman for a living space with little to no luck. Then we took a look around our own showroom and found this great shaped table that was the perfect size! With a little work and creativity, this would fit just right.
1) Create a template of the table top approximately 1/2″ bigger on all sides. This is for the foam. You want the foam cut larger than the top so that as you pull it tight, it will actually cover the hard edge of the table. Cutting thick foam can be difficult. For good results, you can actually use an electric carving knife like you’d use for your Thanksgiving turkey. Instead, I asked our upholsterer to cut it for me. You will also use the template for the top fabric. The 1/2″ will go towards the seam allowance.
2) Tufting Prep (optional) If you’d like buttons for a tufted look, map out where you’d like them on your template, tape the template to the top, and drill completely through the paper and the table top.
For the last step after you’ve completed the ottoman, use several layers of thick thread through a button that will hide on the bottom (I used black to hide under the table). Use a long, thick needle loaded with your thread, insert it up through the hole you drilled, and bring it up through the foam and fabric. Then just thread it through your decorative button on the top and tie tight. Note: It helps to have an assistant (thank you to my hubby, Ryan) push down on the top so you have room to tie the button around the loft of the foam.
Step 3: To make the fabric top, use the template you already created to cut the top fabric. I made a contrast welt, which is optional, but helps to give a tailored look. For the sides, you want to make them much larger then the end product to give you something to grab onto. I used 3″ thick foam and the table top was approx. 3/4″ thick, plus you need to remember your 1/2″ seam allowance. I made my side bands 10″ wide – better too big than not big enough!
Step 4: Put the foam inside the fabric first before putting it on the table top. You’ll find it’s very tight because the foam is cut larger than the top. Just keep adjusting it until it’s just right. I find it’s best to work from the middle out to get it even on all sides. The fabric will then hold the foam in place when you put it on top.
Step 5: Staple – Now is the part where it actually starts to take shape. Starting in the middle, pull the fabric tight in approx. 4″ sections and staple. As you move around, make sure you compare what you’ve done so that it has uniform tightness and no bulges. You may need to use a tack hammer to drive the staples in all the way depending on the density of the wood. The excess fabric also helps to protect the legs in case you slip with the stapler or hammer.
Step 6: Trim off excess fabric within 1/4″ of the staples. Cover rough edge and staples with gimp (a flat decorative trim)
Now is the time you would add the buttons for tufting if you’d like.
Here’s the finished piece in the client’s home. It has the soft ottoman top, storage space below, and a unique soft shape that is comfortable to move around in the room.
How could you use these tips to solve a design challenge? Or how can we help? Let us know in the comments below.
Mary Sherwood Lake Living – working with you to create your lifestyle on Lake Gaston and Beyond!