DIY Vintage Stool Makeover with Guildery

how to diy vintage brass stool

As you know, I love a good vintage find, colorful patterns, and an easy DIY.  When I met the great minds behind Guildery, I knew I had to come up with a project to incorporate their exclusive pattern collections by artisanal textile designers into an upcoming vintage revival!  Guildery curates decorative fabric collections so you can pick accessories that are guaranteed to coordinate, plus they manufacture on-demand in the USA, reducing waste and staying on trend.

I found a great brass stool at the flea market that needed serious love.  It came unassembled and ran me $20 because of the heavy tarnish. Note: if you’re ever buying anything unassembled (even assembled), make sure all of the nails, nail heads, and other pieces are included.  I love the pairing of brass with bright, poppy colors so when I saw the stool I knew it would make for a great makeover with Guildery.  I was quickly drawn to Chonos Grande, designed by Beunos Aires native, Laura Banchik, who uses textile design as the perfect way to merge creativity, graphic experimentation and artistic creation. Making a decision about the textile was no easy job, but Chonos was the pattern that jumped out to me right away so I ordered one yard in Belgian Linen.

diy vintage stool with guildery

What You’ll Need:

-vintage stool (see some great options below)


textile (in at least 1 yard)

Brasso polish

spray paint

heavy duty stapler gun


Step 1: Before I commit to repainting or repairing any brass or metal, I always clean with Brasso. This stuff is a vintage lovers savior and will clean off grime and years of age; however, it’s not a miracle worker and can’t take off layers of rust.  This stool was beyond repair so I picked up spray paint in a smooth gold as I wanted a vintage brass look, without tons of shine. Allow the metal to dry about 1/2 hour before you paint.

diy stool spray paint

Step 2: Using short quick strokes, paint the metal pieces and allow to completely dry (about 1-2 hours) before moving and turning over to paint the other side. Be sure to paint nail heads and other pieces so every piece matches.

diy stool remove nails

Step 3: While you’re waiting for the paint to dry, remove staples and old textile.

Step 4: Using the old foam as a guide, cut out the exact same size foam for the seat.

Step 5: Using the new foam and board as your guide, cut the textile leaving 4 inches of slack on each side.  Tip: before starting the project be sure to iron the fabric to remove any wrinkles and folds!

diy vintage stool makeover

Step 6: Now you’re ready to reupholster! Pull the textile and staple at the center.  Then move to each corner and then work your way back to the center. This will ensure you don’t end up with awkward pulls or ripples in the textile. Follow up with a hammer to secure the nails.

guildery textiles

Step 7: The corners are always the trickiest. I use the gift wrap technique to ensure the corners are neat, secure, and not lumpy.  Fold the top layer and secure with nail gun, then pull the rest of the fabric and secure with nail gun again.  This will give you a pretty, pleated and neat finish.

diy stool assemble

Step 8: Start to build your stool but only secure nails 50% of the way.  Slowly begin to secure each nail, switching sides and equally screwing each nail.  This will keep the stool for getting lopsided because one side is too tight.  It will also make building the stool easier if you’re working solo.

Step 9: Touch up any scratches or spots by spraying the paint on a brush and smoothing.

vintage brass stool

If you’re inspired to tackle your own DIY, here are some great vintage stools that could use some love:



  1. October 8, 2015 / 2:57 pm

    Looks great!

  2. Nar
    October 8, 2015 / 3:07 pm

    Very cute! Love the tutorial – very user friendly!

    • October 9, 2015 / 4:27 pm

      I’m so glad you found this tutorial helpful! I think all DIYs seem daunting, but they are definitely manageable when you break it down into a few steps! xx

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