DIY - Rustic Rope Footstool

Hi friends! I'm back with another DIY project today that I really enjoyed seeing come together. There are many reasons to take a project on yourself versus buy new or hire someone to do for you. Sometimes budget is the driving force to DIY, sometimes it's an itch for creativity, and sometimes it's simply seeing something inspiring and wanting to make it your own. Inspiration was the reason behind today's project!

Long story short, I noticed a particular footstool at my parents' beautiful home while visiting for dinner the other week with my family. It's quite a simple stool, but the rustic effect it had in their living room really caught my eye. I love seeing natural elements mixed into home decor, and this particular footstool is such a perfect example of something small that creates that natural bit of warmth.

I couldn't help but snap a photo:

And after a little fun, here's mine:

Want to see what it started as?

Not a bad deal, eh?! Let me show you how!

Supplies needed:
Stool, preferably unpainted
Hot glue gun
Electric saw, (I used a circular saw)
Sandpaper, (120 grit)
Stain, (I used Ash)
White paint

(To note: I only included the price of the stool, $5, and the price of the rope, $8, in the overall cost of this project, since the rest of the supplies are either common household items, (hot glue gun, sandpaper), optional, (stain and white paint), or easy to borrow, (the saw).

The Low-down

1. Measure each leg accurately, (I used 9" from the seat), and mark where you want to make your cuts, then cut. Be sure to sand the legs at the cuts so they're smooth. 120 grit sandpaper would be ideal.

 At this point, because my legs were painted, I had to remove the paint. If I wanted to remove every bit of it I would have used Citistrip, but because I was going for a salvaged look, I just sanded it off and left bits of the paint here and there.

2. Stain the legs using a clean cloth or staining sponge

3. Dry brush a bit of white paint on the legs once the stain is dry, (which should only take a few minutes). Dry brushing gives a lovely, multi-dimensional effect to a piece so it isn't so flat, but it takes a smidgen of practice. First, I set the can of paint aside and use just the lid. Dab the brush into the paint collected on the lid.

Then wipe it off on a clean cloth, and brush quickly over your surface back and forth with the grain of the wood.

4. Now it's time to rope your seat. Start in the very middle, (best to measure so it's accurate), and stick a big glob of hot glue in that spot. Place the rope firmly into the glue and start gluing around a few inches at a time, followed by placing the rope over the glue. The middle is the toughest spot to get started, but once you get a few rows in, it gets much easier to handle the glue and the rope.

Finished product!

That's it! This stool would make an adorable child's step stool, plant base, or use it just as a footstool! You decide, that's the best part. I actually have a second one of these which I plan to refinish a little differently. Stay tuned! If you try this or any other projects you've found inspiring on Chelsea's Garage please tag them as #chelseasgarage on Instagram or share on Facebook. We love seeing your handiwork! In fact, check out this Swiss Cross rug, (inspired from this post), that a dear reader, Beth, made for her classroom:

So awesome! Thank you so much for sharing on Facebook, Beth - it's perfect in your room. Best of luck in the new school year!

Thank you all for stopping by!


This post was published under Chelsea's Garage, now affectionately known as StyleMutt.

Roped in sisal {DIY desk and lamp}

Happy Friday, ya'll! We're workin' with rope again today! Yeehaw! I'd like to think I would have been a darn good cowgirl if, you know, I hadn't grown up in suburbia Northern Virginia. Oh, the what-ifs... (actually, I was responsible for two dozen horses by myself one weekend when I was 10 years old and working at a horse farm in exchange for riding time. The weekend wasn't a complete disaster)

Earlier this week I shared how to hang art with sisal rope in order to add visual substance to an empty wall:


Moving onto furniture, I've got two more ideas for our handy sisal rope! 

1. Trim a recovered seat:

One of the first DIYs I learned was how to recover a seat. My parents gave us an extra staple gun that they had, which is really the only tool you need. That, and a screwdriver to remove the seat cushion from underneath. Once your seat is off, you can remove the existing fabric, (though that isn't always necessary), and then place your seat top-down on the new fabric. Pull the fabric moderately tight over the edges of your seat and staple away! Once your new fabric is attached and you've trimmed off any longer edges and ends, you can screw the seat back on. This is where I wash my hands and call it a day since I don't know the first thing about making or attaching piping cord. Depending on your seat, sisal rope might be the perfect answer!

For this project I plugged in our hot glue gun to let it 'pre-heat' and then measured and cut the proper length of rope I would need to wrap entirely around the seat. After I was done cutting the rope, the glue gun was ready. It was best to work slowly in one small 4" section at a time as the glue dries so fast! I just made a 4" strip of glue along the seam of the seat and then pressed the rope right over the line of glue. I love this alternative to piping cord and it was super easy!

2. Rustic roped lampshade

While the glue was still hot I decided to experiment with this stripped lampshade that was collecting dust in our garage. I pre-cut all the pieces of rope that I would need and set them aside within reach, working in small sections at a time. This project was a little more tedious as I had to go super slow with the glue to ensure it didn't drip off the wire frame. The end result though looks so cool! It totally has that rustic-chic Pottery Barn vibe going on. Pop in a little Edison bulb and it's a unique, sophisticated floor lamp!

Surprise! These pieces will be available at the June 7 sale.
9am - 3pm
Contact me for the address if you'd like to stop by!

As always, thank you so much for reading and have a wonderful weekend! 


This post was published under Chelsea's Garage, now affectionately known as StyleMutt.

Make your eclectic style work {5 Tips}

Hi friends! This is a topic I've been excited to talk about for a little while. It's my own little collection of tips on how to decorate with an eclectic style aesthetic. Eclectic style is simply having a broad range of tastes and inspirations. I am sure that many of you, like me, cannot define your decorating style in one category, (elegant, bohemian, mid-century, country, etc). In fact, I have walked into only a few homes that are of one style aesthetic the whole way through. Personally, I prefer a more mixed and less match-y feel. Most people like a bit of this and a touch of that - and that's wonderful! But, sometimes it's hard to figure out how to use this and that in the same space together. So, let's take a look at some ways to make various styles work in one space!

1 -Earthy tones & a few pops of bright

You really can't go wrong with an earthy color palette. It makes combining various elements in one room much easier when you keep the big things, (walls, sofas, large area rugs), relatively neutral. Then you can play around with distinct snaps of color on lesser committal things, (pillows, wall art, lampshades, small area rugs, window treatments). 

{I really wanted our chandelier to be something funky and unusual, so I kept the rest of the dining room pretty low key so the fixture could stand out - how to found here}

 {Even a furniture piece, like a coffee table, can be fun to bring out your favorite color}

2 -Layering

Who says that everything from floor to ceiling needs to be of the same style genre? A geometric pattern on a rug with an old chippy wood coffee table is just one example of combining modern with vintage. Or a traditional Persian rug with a Lucite coffee table, (looks completely clear, like glass or plastic); a different way of combining old with new. If you pull together a color scheme that works well, (keeping the big things neutral), mixing various styles gets easier.

{I found this funky area rug at a thrift store, originally from IKEA - since it's neutral, it is the perfect modern element to offset our antique heirloom bedroom set}

{With both a traditional, neutral area rug and a rustic coffee table, I added some bright and colorful ombre throw pillows, (made from placemats, how-to found here) and a metal hexagon side table}

3 -Natural greens, (fresh or faux)

Bringing nature indoors is a simple trick for tying an eclectic space together. Greens often add a peaceful and calming vibe to a collected, layered space. 

4 -Edit

It is hard to pull the reigns back, especially when you have an eclectic aesthetic, but sometimes it's necessary when your eye is drawn to a variety of styles. I do love a rustic vibe, but I already have several rustic pieces floating around my home. I contrast those with my white furniture and walls, simple, clean lines for light fixtures, and a bit of shine here and there.

5 -Don't take the decorating too seriously

Your home is your own retreat and sanctuary. If you try to copy what you see in the magazines, you'll probably be disappointed when all is said and done. Own your style and have fun with it. Be surprising, be different. Don't over think. Decorate for the fun of decorating. Here are a few of my own ideas that I didn't have to think twice about; they're just for fun.

{Red tool box used as bench for my kids to pull their shoes on}

{Big ol' Duck Egg blue china cabinet in dining room}

{I converted a beat up chair into a hanging wall shelf for a client}

{Brought home these flea market antlers and recovered them in antique homespun linen}

{Decorated our deck when the weather was particularly nice one evening in summer}

{Passing on my love for art and creativity}

Thank you so much for stopping by!


This post was originally featured under Chelsea's Garage, now affectionately known as StyleMutt.