Before and After- Ottoman Makeover for Mom

As I mentioned earlier in the week, I made my mother an ottoman for Christmas.  I took an original low coffee table, added a shelf and upholstered the top.  (Details broken down below!) This was my first time attempting anything like this, and while it’s definitely not perfect, I’m pleased with the result.  My mom is thrilled, so that is what’s most important.

The story of this ottoman began almost a year ago when I was shopping for a coffee table for my own apartment.  I walked into Phantastic Phinds (a consignment shop in the Philadelphia area) and knew right away that this little table had potential.

(I forgot to take a before photo, but managed to find the picture above here!)

It was much too low though- only about 11” high- so I had my trusted carpenter, Angelo, build me an extension.  He created a piece with arched openings on each side so that I could access a shelf below the table top.  I thought it had great potential, but ended up falling in love with a different coffee table for my space.  For about 9 months, it sat in this state…

And then I took a good look at my parents’ living room and realized their current ottoman set-up was totally non-functional.  It was too long, too narrow, and junk always piled up on top of it, not leaving much room for drinks or feet.  That’s when the light went off that my little thrift store find would be the perfect gift for my momma.

Since we weren’t changing out the dark sofa or dark rug, I knew I needed to add a little happy color with the ottoman.  So I went to task priming…

And then painting the base and lower shelf…

I chose Sherwin Williams Naval Blue.  I felt it was a nice compliment to the rug- dark while still feeling a little bold and lively.  You can see in the shot above I put the shelf in place.

I had my dad cut me a piece of plywood for the top.  I then layered on 2″ foam and batting and stapled away.

The next step was sewing the cording and then stapling on the fabric and cording.  I’ve never done cording and the stitching was terribly crooked.  Oh well, hidden from view! (Hehe, sorry, Mom.)

Dad helped me screw in the top and it was all done!

Now the clutter is hidden on the lower shelf, the tray actually fits the ottoman and the room is colorful and happy.  That’s my kind of makeover.  

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  2. sarah

    Beautiful, well done. Incredible results!
    …but I get the feeling that the add-on by the carpenter would cost double of what a thrift-store find might be (for those of us who might consider a similar DYI).
    Can you reveal how much it was?

    • Naomi

      I had my carpenters make it for me. I own a construction company so it was “free.” I didn’t track the time on this one so I couldn’t translate a cost. Sorry

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  4. BAM….brilliant. I will never look at a short coffee table the same way again….

  5. You’re so talented Naomi, seriously beautiful work and goes just perfectly with your mom’s place..I would buy this for me!

  6. Awesome.

    Crooked stitches are a sign of hand-craftmenship.

  7. I am in LOVE with this gorgeous coffee table you made for your mom!! Just stunning!!

  8. Looks great and their rug is to die for! any idea where it’s from?

  9. Beautiful ottoman! Your momma must be so proud;) I live too far from mine, but wish I could do projects like that for her. Very beautiful colors and work.


  10. I love it! such pretty details in the woodwork and the color mix is amazing!

  11. Amazing. So nice to meet you just found your beautiful blog and so happy I did. I have enjoyed looking around and I’m now following you, wonderful to meet new friends. Hope you find a spare minute to visit and follow me sometime if you like. Sending you special wishes for a wonderful New Year I’m looking forward to keeping in touch in 2012.
    Always Wendy

  12. That is true one of a kind! I love the colors, so unique and pretty. Great job!

  13. Tamra

    You never cease to amaze me, an extension!! Genius. Bravo! I would of LOOOVEd that under my tree and then made one of my crazy faces.

  14. Just brilliant (and not just the color).This is incredibly well thought out and executed. Great job!

  15. It looks awesome….what a fun project!


  16. Dane

    The colors are great! You did a great job and the extension to the table…brilliant!



  17. Extension to the table??? Brilliant!!! And I can’t believe how adding this fab little ottoman completely revived the look of this room! I barely noticed that awesome rug before and now it perfectly complements it’s fantastic new buddy…best present *ever*!

  18. Fatou

    Amazing use of color – it completely brightened up the space! Love that tray too.

  19. I never thought of adding an extension to a low table. Brilliant! Love the pop of color!

  20. Ashley

    Fantabulous (yes, this project is worthy of a two-word hybrid). Your mama must be absolutely thrilled. And I can see some Naomi styling happening on the new table–how talented you are.

  21. Brilliant! I love your signature color and that it fits perfectly in your mom’s home too!

  22. I am so flippin impressed. I bow down to you, master of ridiculously good DIY makeovers.

  23. Yay for thinking caps. I love that this is an ottoman with a shelf below for storage. I don’t see too many of those around.

  24. So pretty! The “building up” idea is genius! Love the color combo…what a great gifter you are!

  25. I am so impressed with your vision and skills…they are rockin! Looks just the rich vibrant color!

  26. I’m thoroughly impressed with the transformation! I bet your mom was thrilled to get such a lovely gift.

  27. I would never guess that you added the top part on. It looks so seamless. I find cute coffee tables that are too low all the time. Thats such a bummer when you want vintage. What a great gift!

  28. Naomi you are my HERO! I love this DIY I seriously can’t say enough good things! The color the, the stacked look gahhh amazing!

  29. Lindsay

    Great work! Defiintely doesn’t look like a first attempt at all!!

  30. That is pretty impressive. I’m going to need to find my own trusted carpenter…nice vision!

  31. Wow!! Naomi, that is a true makeover. Perfect pops of color and that shelf is ingenious! I see furniture design in your future, girlie.

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