Tagged: upcycling

hassock re-upholstery complete!

hassock-upholstery complete

She’s all done! My hassock re-upholstery is complete, and I now have a brand new hassock!

hassock-upholstery complete

Here she is, looking quite pretty.

how to reupholster a vintage hassock

I’m very proud of this one. As I said at the beginning, this was a bit of a “scary project” for me, a stretch beyond what I’ve done before. But in the end, I didn’t have too much to worry about. It took some time, effort, and patience, but now it’s all done and I learned a lot of new tricks. I hope I’ve done a good job relaying those new tricks on to you!

For the final chapter of the hassock re-upholstery series, click through to read about how I refinished the legs!


i’m addicted to possibilities (and vintage wooden furniture.)

wooden vintage mid-century dresser

I’ve decided that I am addicted to possibilities. I’m a possibilities addict, if you will.

And that is why I couldn’t leave this gorgeous, if unloved, mid-century wooden dresser at Goodwill on Sunday*.

The entire purpose of my drive to Goodwill, by the way, was to drop off a donation… an old dresser of mine. Because I had a new one and didn’t need it anymore.


wooden mid-century dresser - broken handles

First of all, and most importantly, this dresser is gorgeous. It is my favorite shade of wood: not too dark but not light. It’s a great size, because it’s not a giant piece of furniture and would be able to find a place in just about any room. It’s wonderfully square. It’s heavy and real wood. The handles are awesome. And it has hairpin legs.

When I spotted it, I gave it a good once-over. First: the handles on the bottom drawer had broken off. Bad news. I began to consider how it would look without a bottom drawer, even: could that serve as a little shelf instead? But the handles were inside! And I have strong faith in the power of wood glue combined with clever clamping.

wooden mid-century dresser - scuffed wood

Next, the general condition of the wood. Overall, I believe that the wood on this dresser is in fine shape. There are some finish irregularities in areas – and this side is quite splotchy – but I think I’ll be able to refresh it without even doing a heavy sanding. And with the color as it is, I am not restaining. I love its current shade too much to mess with it.

wooden mid-century dresser - bleached top

The top of the dresser is the only part that needs heavier work. There are some small water rings/spots (white, thank goodness, not black!), and the whole surface is just lacking in color, most likely from too much sun in its fairly long lifetime. There’s a chance it will need some sanding and some rejuvenation. But I’m not afraid of it.

So it’s true, I’ve given myself another project. But I couldn’t leave it at the store because of the possibility of the rejuvenated piece. I had so much hope for this broken, unloved piece of furniture. I could see what it could be. And that possibility was far too great for me to say no to. In fact, I believe that I love this dresser more because it isn’t perfect. Because it needs some work. Because it has so much potential… so much possibility. If I had found the same thing in mint condition, I may have still bought it… but I probably wouldn’t be so elated.

So into the trunk it went, where the seats were still down from the fact that I had dropped off a dresser less than half an hour ago. A dresser trade. And infinite possibility.

Are you like me? Do you buy things solely on what they could be, rather than what they are?

*yes, Goodwill is open on Sundays! Who knew!

hassock re-upholstery, part 2: making the cushion

After demolition of the original hassock upholstery, I was ready to begin designing and sewing the brand new cushion.

hassock upholstery-pattern

During demolition, I traced the outline of the current cushion to get a good start on the pattern. I cut my tracing out loosely, then folded a few times (think paper snowflake) as you can see by the creases in the tissue. When I cut the shape with everything folded, I could be certain that it was symmetric in all directions. Rounded corners are especially easy for me to skew one way or the other when I do it by sight, so folding made that much easier.

hassock upholstery-fabriccloseup

Here’s a closeup of the fabric I used! It’s heavy duty wool with a woven side and a softer, fuzzy side. Even though the fuzzy side is obviously the right side, the wrong side is also interesting.

hassock upholstery cushion-cutout

I cut out my rounded square top, and two long rectangles to serve as the sides of the cushion. This could have been one super long rectangle, of course, but that wouldn’t fit with my fabric allowance. Plus, this makes it symmetric.

More cushion construction after the jump… including my classy little “underflaps” invention!