Monday, August 27

Furniture Facelift: DIY Upholstered Trunk

Are you ready for the easiest upholstery project ever? Good. Because this is it. 

I found this trunk at a thrift store. Four years ago... And it's taken this long for anything to happen to it... But that's another story for another time. Anyway, I found this baby for less than $5. Of course, that could have been because of the completely busted lid, but who's to say? So she needed a new lid. So with the help of my stepdad and grandfather, eventually, one was made.

As you can see, the wood of the lid doesn't exactly match the wood of the rest of the trunk. So what's a girl to do?! Turn it into a cushy ottoman/bench/trunk of course! And it could not be easier. Okay, it probably could, but this is pretty easy as is, trust me.

**you also might want a hammer!**
I removed the lid from the trunk for the upholstering process and reattached the hinges after I was done.

I think it goes without saying that you want your foam to match the size of your trunk lid, and of course you want enough batting and fabric to cover the lid as well. In this case, my lid was about 2' x 3', so 1 yd. of 54" upholstery fabric was plenty, and one package of batting was sufficient as well. Words of wisdom: don't pay full price for this stuff! Joanns and Hobby Lobby put their home decor fabric on sale pretty regularly, so hold out for sale prices. Same goes for the batting. The foam doesn't really go on sale, but the stores put out "40% off one item" coupons pretty much weekly, and you can use that on one cut of foam, one cut of fabric, etc. So don't pay full price!

Place your foam on top of your lid, lining up the edges. Drape your batting over the foam; the more layers, the cushier it will be. I used four layers. (Note: I don't really use batting in my day-to-day life, so I was pretty generous with my layers and didn't worry about conserving the leftovers. Hence the large overhang of material on the sides. You can be more precise if you like.)

Drape your fabric over the batting. Tip: It's easier to drape all this with the lid off the ground; I put the lid across the trunk for this process.

Carefully flip the whole lid, fabric and all, upside-down and onto the floor. Being cautious not to pull too hard, begin stapling the fabric and batting to the wood so that it is taut across the lid. Staple opposite sides rather than around (that is, do the right side and then the left, rather than right, bottom, left, top), pulling as you go. When stapling, be sure to keep the staple gun square on the wood rather than titled one way or the other, or the staples may not really go into the lid. You may want to hammer your staples as you work as well to ensure that they are firmly in place through the layers of fabric and batting (I hammered all of mine).

Fold the corners of the fabric and batting up, being careful of the pleating, and staple in place. You may need to trim away excess batting to make this process easier.

Trim away the excess fabric and batting. Check to see that the fabric is secure and add more staples as needed. 

Reattach to your trunk, and voila! A newly upholstered cushy trunk, perfect to put your feet on and store your extra pillows and blankets inside!

let's connect ---> facebook // instagram // twitter // pinterest // rss


  1. Can't wait to try this :) Thanks for sharing

    1. My pleasure, Nomzamo! Thanks for stopping by! :)) I'd love to see your project when it's finished -- be sure to send me a link!

  2. I absolutely love the fabric you used!!! Wish I could find it!! :-) I also like the dimensions of your box - I think I am gong to make it! :-)

    1. Aw, that's great Joanne! Thank you! I'd love to see your project when it's done -- shoot me an email :) I think I got the fabric at Joanns, maybe Hobby Lobby!


Thank you so much for your interest in my post! I'd love to hear your thoughts. :)

Pin It button on image hover