Category:   Skill Level:
Custom Made Ottoman
Custom Made Ottoman

Created by: Michele Mishler

Be sure to give us feedback on this project below.

Level: Intermediate
Time: 10 hours

An ottoman is such a versatile piece of furniture! It can be a comfortable footrest, handy extra seating, or even substitute for a coffee table. If you have never tried your hand at upholstery, an ottoman is a great place to start; easy construction and basic supplies make this an easy to do project.

Janome Supplies Required:

Horizon MC12000
PC with HorizonLink software
A foot
P foot
AccuFeed foot
Janome pre-wound bobbins

Fabric and Notions Required:

2 yds chenille upholstery fabric, 54" width
2 yds of polyester batting
3/4 yd dust cover cloth
22" x 22" x 5" medium firm foam cushion
Five self covered buttons, 1"
Stay tight cord
Tear away stabilizer
Matching upholstery thread
Embroidery thread
Removable marker
12" double ended needle
100/16 needles

Hardware Required:

1/2 sheet of 1/2" plywood
Four 3 1/2" square feet plus mounting hardware
1/2" wide cardboard strips
1 1/4" brads
5/8" staples
Staple gun
Staple remover
Tack hammer

Cutting Instructions for the Ottoman Base
An ottoman is really just a simple plywood box with cushion and feet. The plywood can be cut on a table saw to the following dimensions (A local lumberyard can also cut the pieces!):

2 pieces 7 1/2" x 22"
2 pieces 7 1/2" x 21"
1 piece 22" x 22"
2 pieces 8" x 8"
(Cut each 8" square diagonally for corner braces)

Assemble a square box using the 21" and 22" lengths. Nail in place with 1 1/4" brads. Place the 22" square of plywood on top of the box, and nail in place with 1 1/4" brads. Turn the box over. Nail a diagonal brace in each corner, making it flush with the bottom of the box. Turn the box right sides up.

Mark the box corner to corner, creating an X that meets in the middle. Measure from center along each line 8" and place a mark. Drill 1/4" hole at the center mark and each diagonal mark.

Cutting Instructions for Upholstery Fabric
The chenille fabric has nap, so take care to mark the upper edge of each of the sides!

4 pieces 12" X 27"
1 piece 36" x 36"

Each side (12" x 27") is embroidered with two embroidery designs end to end. Print a template for Favorite_3_13. Mark the placement for embroidery. Embroider the designs on each panel, making sure that the nap of the fabric is the same for each panel. When the embroidery is complete, remove the excess stabilizer. Cut each panel to 11" x 24". Sew the ends together with a 1/2" seam allowance to form a ring.

Cut a 6 1/2" square from each corner of the 36" square. Fold each corner so that the edges match. Sew with a 1/2" seam allowance.

Place the 5" foam cushion on top of the plywood box. Cut a 36" square of polyester batting. Cover the foam with batting, keeping the batting centered. Pull the batting evenly and staple to box, close to the upper edge. Staples should be approximately 2" apart, all around the box. The excess batting is trimmed away at the corners. Trim excess batting close to the staples.

Place the 36" square of upholstery fabric over the foam and batting. Align the seams of the fabric square with the corners of the box. Pull the fabric evenly and staple to the box, close to the upper edge. Work from side to side and from center to ends to keep smooth tension on the fabric.

With the embroidered sides of the ottoman wrong sides out, and the upper edge of the embroidery toward the lower edge of the box, pull the fabric over the cushion. Align the seams with the corners of the box and the seams of the cushion. Adjust the position of the fabric so that it covers the upper edge of the box by 1", evenly all around the box. You will be able to feel the edge of the box with your fingers. Place a cardboard strip over the edge of the fabric on the first side of the box, keeping the strip even with the top of the box. Staple in place. Trim to fit. The staples should be placed 1" apart so that the fabric and cardboard are smooth. Repeat for the opposite side of the box. Repeat for the remaining sides of the box.

Cut strips of polyester batting 8" wide and wrap the sides of the box with the batting. Staple to hold in place. Pull the embroidered sides over the batting, turning the fabric right side out as you go. Pull the fabric to the underside of the box, stapling at the bottom edge. Work from side to side and from center to ends, keeping the sides smooth and the seams aligned with the corners. Fold and staple the excess fabric at the corners. Trim excess fabric if necessary.

From the underside of the box, locate the drilled holes. These are for the buttons. Push one end of a double headed needle through the center hole, keeping the needle perpendicular to the top of the box. Thread a length of cord through a self covered button. Thread the exposed end of the needle with the ends of the cord. Pull the ends through to the underside of the box. Pull to one side and staple securely in place. Repeat for the remaining buttons.

Cover the underside of the ottoman with the dust cover fabric. Trim to fit, taking care that it does not show when the ottoman is upright. Attach the feet according to the instructions for the hardware. Depending on the type, they may need to be installed before the dust cover.


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