Monday, September 16, 2013

Fun-gi Stool

I have become slightly obsessed with mushrooms. AND - before everyone goes all crazy on me - I am NOT referring to the hallucinogenic drug-type mushroom. What I AM referring to is cute little anythings that resemble mushrooms - specifically toadstools! 

I think it might have something to do with the color palette. The red and white polka dots, paired with yellow and green, just tickle my creative underbelly. They make me happy and anything that makes you smile has to be a good addiction, right?!

One of the small negatives of repurposing is that I ride a very thin line between crafter and hoarder. I find things in my husband's toss pile and often pick them out and set them aside. He loves it! (insert sarcasm here) A few of those pieces of "junk" that I rescued recently are some wooden wire spools. I've seen a ton of uses for them on Pinterest as of late, and I finally found just the right use for my spools - kids' toadstools! I found some inspiration on Pinterest:

 And with a few modifications of my own my version is just right for a pint-sized tushy.

If you happen upon some spools that are begging you to rescue them, below is a tutorial (or my best attempt at one) on how to make the stools yourself. The wire spools themselves can be a bit tricky to find, but I happen to have a really great hookup. On his days off from his "regular job" my hubby happens to be an electrician. Oh sweet wire spool heaven!!!

Wire Spool Toadstool Tutorial

Before you start, trace the top of your spool onto a piece of plywood, or any other sturdy piece of wood. I used some scrap wood we had lying around the house. Then, beg your husband to cut out the circle using a jigsaw. I'm capable, I just like to make my projects a family affair! This circular piece of wood will be a fabric-covered top for your toadstool. Sorry - I'm still learning this blogging thing and didn't take a picture of this step. 

Spray paint your spools the color of your choice. I chose white, but whatever color scheme you choose to fit your space will be perfect. My spray paint of choice is Rust-Oleum Universal Paint & Primer In One. It's a bit more pricey than some, but it covers awesomely and has a nice spray nozzle that doesn't kill your hand. I paid $16 for two cans and was able to spray three spools with the two cans. Whenever I spray paint a project, I like to start by tipping the piece upside down and spraying the underside first. When that dries, flip the piece right side up and spray again. This process ensures you are getting all the nooks and crannies. 

While your spools are drying, you can cover the circular piece of wood with your fabric of choice. I chose a traditional red and white polka dot fabric for a toadstool-esque piece, but these really can be any kind of stool so any kind of fabric will do. My fabric was about $4 per yard and I bought 1 1/2 yards. Before covering with fabric, you'll want to pad your seats (no pun intended). Start by tracing your wood circle onto a piece of poly foam. 

I purchased these squares of poly foam from Hobby Lobby. The smaller squares were $1.99 each and a larger square for a larger spool was $4.99. 

Next, cut out the poly foam using sewing scissors.

Coat the back of the foam with spray-adhesive and press the foam onto the wood circle.

Now you're ready to begin covering with fabric. Start by centering your wood on a piece of fabric. Staple one side of fabric and then staple another piece directly across from where you just started. Repeat this on all four sides of your circle and then fill in the gaps, bunching fabric where needed. 

Once you have your entire circle covered and stapled, trim off any excess fabric. 

Finally, attach your stool seat to your wire spool by drilling from the bottom side of the "seat" part of your spool. (I asked my husband to do this part too! Again-family affair!)

And there you have it - your toadstool! You could definitely stop right here if you want, but I decided to take mine a couple of steps further. I added yellow ribbon to trim the seat and painted "grass" on the bottom portion of the stool with some green paint I had around the house.

I feel like the grass and ribbon add just the final touch to my toadstools, but you could certainly skip this step and still have a very cute stool of your own!

Now let your kiddos sit and enjoy (ribbit)!

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