Cottage Project: DIY Lucite Suzani Ottoman

I’m FED UP with the chaos that is my home, so I’ve given myself a June deadline to pull it together.  It feels good to have a date… it really motivates me to design and execute.  And when I’m in the design zone, I don’t stop for nuttin’.  Think obsessed, vigorous and effective.  Which is what I’ll need to be done by June!

I have big plans for a kitchen renovation, but that probably wont be until the fall at the earliest.  My focus right now is the interior design of the other rooms in the house, plus a quickie update to the kitchen.  Everything is like 75-90% there, but not quite “finished.”  My focus is pulling that last bit together and making it all shine.

Today I’m sharing an update (DIY!) I just finished in my living room.  I was tired of my old ottoman, so after a little scheming I decided to create my own lucite ottoman.  This project was inexpensive, easy, fun and I think the result is damn sexy.

DIY Lucite Suzani Ottoman bench


Like many of you out there, I have a bit of a lucite fetish.  I felt LUCITE would be perfect for my ottoman legs because I already have a lot of wood and metal furniture and didn’t want to repeat those materials again.  Unfortunately lucite furniture and leg parts are expensive!  I am too fickle and cheap with my own stuff, so I found another way to source lucite.  Turns out Wayfair sells a lucite ottoman for under $200.  Since the ottoman size worked well in my room, I decided to buy their version and recover the top myself.


DIY- Grasscloth Ikea Lack Hack

 Hey guys.  Sorry to promise you a DIY and then leave you high and dry, but I found my project incredibly hard to photograph.  I finally snapped a few pics this morning that kinda capture the texture and color of my table, and I am sharing them below. 

But before we get to that… A few weeks back my pal Meg cam up to Philadelphia and we spent several hours shopping, dining, drinking and hanging out around town.  Where did we go and what kind of trouble did we get into?  You’ll have to hp over to Mimi + Meg to find out!  Yup I’m the feature of this week’s “My City” column.  Read it here.

Now onto my little DIY:  I made myself, I grasscloth parsons table.  I had an old LACK coffee table, leftover grasscloth from a project and a bucket of paint and the result is the end table in my bedroom.

Here’s the deal.  I had an old Ikea Lack table lying around, and it was ugly.

I cut up strips of grasscloth and started on the legs.

Once the legs were done, I template the top.

The whole thing glued together fairly easy with modgepodge, but the corners didn’t look very good.

So my sister and I made up little corner pieces to cover up the ugly seams.

Once it was all done, I painted it gloss pink- them same as my ceiling and trim.

I know its hard to tell in photos- but its subtle and pretty in person.  I dig the extra texture it provides in the room!  The corners still aren’t great, but maybe I’ll swap them out for metal brackets at some point. 

Rug talk continues: Stenciled Idea for Showroom

Kim Myles recently debuted a new stencil line and I am in love with her “Indian Inlay” pattern.  It’s designed to create the look of intricate mother of pearl inlay furniture.  Of course I want to further complicate this DIY by stenciling it on a rug.  I’m guessing it would be time consuming, but the end result would be gorgeous!

This is the area of the showroom that needs the runner.  I like black and white for the runner because I really want to ground the area and keep attention off those stupid tiles.  The light rug that is there now is close to my color scheme, but is too small and doesn’t have impact.

(Sorry for the messy counters.  Just keepin it real.)

For your viewing pleasure, I got all photoshoppy and plopped the stencil rug in place. 

It could be fun, but if I do this rug here, I’ll have to really simple window treatments. (I’ve been contemplating both a clean geometric, and a really big scale floral.  Big scale floral would not work with this.)  So now I need to decide if I want my intricate pattern on the floor or walls.

A stenciled rug is definitely a DIY I’d like to try at one point.  I’d also like to take an IKEA lack coffee table and try this stencil on it as well.  So many projects, so little time!

To see Kim’s whole line of stencils, click here!

Labor of Love

Happy Valentines Day my loves!  Any romantic, self indulgent, or escapist plans for the night?  I have a little something planned with the hunny… crossing my fingers it works out.

I have a lot of love to give.  Not just to my man, my pug, my family or friends, I’ve poured a lot of love into projects as well.  So I thought I dedicate today to my labor of loves; my DIY’s.  Recaps / Pictures / Links below. 

Step-by-Step Here

Updated Here

Step-by-Step Here
Original Here
Updated Here

Step-by-Step Here
Oh, and I upholstered those chairs!  Before Here.

Step-by-Step Here
Updated Here
Before Here

During Here

Step-by-Step Here
Original Version Here

Before and After Here
Step-by-Step Here
Birdcage Before Here

Bookshelf Details Here

Wow, that’s a lot of LOVE!  I hope you enjoyed my little recap.  What’s your favorite DIY project you’ve done?

And do tell, have any of you tried my DIYs?  I would love to know!

DIY: Ikea Coffee Table- Ottoman Conversion

The alternative title for this post was “Hey, I made my boyfriend an ottoman for Christmas,” but the above seemed more concise.  Do you remember back in late December when I was full of woe over my last minute DIY Christmas gifts?  Well, yes, I made two ottomans.  One for my mom, which I posted about here, and one for my boyfriend, which is shown below.

Prior to my little project, J didn’t have a coffee table.  We would snuggle on the sofa and battle for coveted foot space on a spare stool.  Pretty pathetic.  He had an old, beat up Klubbo coffee table stored in a spare bedroom, so I stole it and gave it a makeover.

The Klubbo is an odd table.  At 10-1/2″ high, its really too low to be a coffee table, but it’s the perfect base for an ottoman.  The first thing I did was spray paint the base.  I used an oil-rubbed bronze finish.  I like that it reads black, but has a little extra dimension.

 I knew I needed to pick a practical material that wouldn’t show wear from shoes and spilled drinks (why are boys so messy?)  I picked out a camel colored vinyl down on 4th Street and went to task upholstering.  The corners proved to be quite tricky.  Since the fabric was so thick and stiff, I couldn’t wrap the corners.  Luckily my sister, Meg, stepped in and help me pin and sew the corners.  I’m pretty pleased with how they turned out.

To sew the corners, this is what we did:  We pinned them in place, took the vinyl off the ottomans,  marked the inside while the pins were in place, turned it inside out and sewed it.   We then placed the vinyl back on the ottoman, made sure the corners were nice and snug, snipped away any excess vinyl on the inside, and then stapled away.
I used a welt (cording) in the same fabric to hide any gaps between the frame and the upholstered portion.  It also gives it a nice finished look.


The look I was going for was streamlined, chic and masculine.  It’s all about the layers in this space.  It’s certainly more neutral than my place.  I do intend to sneak in more pattern, though.  (Tehehe.) 

I also didn’t go overboard styling the ottoman.  As much as I wanted to dress it up with design books and trinkets, it just didn’t seem real.  In actuality, it’s usually covered with grad school books!

Real camel leather would have been delicious, but I’m pretty happy with the vinyl as an inexpensive alternative.  I’d like to think that the ottoman looks more expensive than it was to make (under $200.)  This won’t be a forever piece, but it’s doing a nice job for now.  PS- I just picked up that tray from West Elm this weekend.

So that’s my latest DIY.  I don’t know why it took me so long to photograph it.  I didn’t get a chance to snap photos of GirlyGlam bath Friday afternoon, so I will do that today.  Look for bathroom updates tomorrow!