Updated April 20, 2018
I recently got asked about how to replace the covering on a footstool. It isn’t a hard process and this makes for some lovely needlepoint.
Here’s how to do it:
There are three steps to this process, neither particularly hard.
The first step is to measure the footstool. Do you still have the old top? If you do measure the length and width with the top on, so you know how much padding there is. Detailed instructions on how to do this can be found on All about Needlepoint.
Your measurement plus about 1/4″ all around will be the finished size of the stitching. Mark that shape onto your canvas with something like an Extra Fine Sharpie or, better, a Pigma Micron marker. Let dry overnight.
The second step is to stitch the needlepoint. You have tons of options here, but I’d like to suggest three.
1. Repeat the original pattern if you can find it.
2. Stitch a Bargello pattern, they are easy, can be done in colors to match your decor and are traditional for footstools. I have a book on Bargello, Bargello Revisited, available on Amazon, with over 30 different patterns, many of which will scale for a large piece. There are also more patterns and ideas in my eProjects, Maple Leaf Rag and Bargello Bells, in my book Bargello Revisited, and here on the blog. To find those, look at the category Bargello. Be warned though, there are many posts there,
3. Find a vintage needlepoint pattern you like. Here onNuts, I’ve been recharting designs by Anne Orr, who was popular in the 30’s-50’s, so her patterns have a vintage look. You find them under the category vintage needlepoint.
Once you have stitched the needlepoint, block it and use it, as you would fabric, to cover the footstool. You can do this yourself. Instructions to do this with a screw on top are at the end of the same All about Needlepoint article. eHow has detailed instructions for recovering round footstools and on using tacks to do this process. You need to use this method for any footstool where the top is not easily removable.