How to Turn an Old Tire Into an Ultra-Chic Ottoman
Need a spare seat or a place to rest your feet? Upcycle a spare tire into a stylish pouf footstool.
Get a little extra mileage out of a used tire with this easy footstool upcycling project. The tire makes a perfect structure for the rounded pouf style stool and enough weight to make it substantial without being too heavy. For a global vibe, use a medallion blanket or tapestry to cover your stool. They are easily found in Indian markets or through a quick search on the web.
- (2) 18" diameter project boards
- (8) 1-1/4" screws
- hot-glue gun and glue sticks
- 24" x 24" seat cushion foam
- spray adhesive
- quilt batting, full size
- staple gun and 1/2" staples
- Indian medallion blanket or tapestry
- sewing machine
- 2-1/2 yards of 1-inch soft upholstery cording
- 1 yard black felt
Before you begin, give the tire a thorough wash with soap and a scrub brush. Allow the tire to dry completely before starting the project.
To provide a strong bond while allowing for some flexibility for the tire and potential uneven weight distribution during use, attach a project board to one side of the tire using 1-1/4" screws. The screws should go from the inside of the tire into the project board, centered over the hole. Use eight screws, evenly distributed around the opening. Pre-drill holes if necessary. NOTE: Round project boards are one inch thick and readily available in home improvement stores. However, this could be made with 1/2" plywood cut to 18" diameter and 1" screws.
Turn the board over and attach the second project board to the opening on the other side using a hot-glue gun. Screws, which could potentially scratch your flooring, are not necessary as the bottom board will not be affected by use and is meant as a cover for the bottom and a place to attach the upholstery. Run a bead of glue close to the edge of the board, flip it over, and press it in place, centered on the opening in the tire. Run a second, heavy bead of hot glue around the edge of the board where it meets the tire. Allow it to harden.
Turn the tire over again and measure the diameter. Cut the seat cushion foam into a circle the same the diameter of the tire. Spray one side of the seat cushion foam with spray adhesive and bond the foam to the project board that was attached with screws.
Lay quilt batting, doubled, on a flat surface. Turn the tire over and position it in the center of the batting. Wrap the batting over the sides and attach to the project board on the bottom with a staple gun and staples. Start by adding one staple and then pull snugly on the batting directly opposite of that staple. Secure that batting with another staple. Place another staple halfway between those two and repeat on the opposite side, pulling the batting snugly. Repeat the process to secure all of the batting, making it fit snugly over the tire and seat cushion foam. Cut away any excess batting and discard.
Cut two bands of fabric from the top and bottom of the blanket that are the height of the covered tire plus 9". The length of each piece should be half the circumference of the tire plus 6". Lay the two pieces together, face to face, and line up the patterns. Pin them together on one short end and sew them with a 1/2" seam allowance.
Cut the center medallion out of the blanket. The diameter of the circle should be the diameter of the tire plus 6". Lay the circle on a flat surface, face up, and lay the band of fabric on it face down. Moving around the circle, pin the band of fabric to the circle at the outer edge. Where the two loose ends of the band meet, fold the loose end on the left back on itself 5". Continue pinning the loose end on the right over the doubled loose end on the left and the circle on the bottom. Where these ends overlap there should be four layers of fabric, including the circle on the bottom. Sew them together with a 1/2" seam allowance. Do not sew the short, loose ends of the bands together where the overlap was created. This will allow for some flexibility later.
Place the cording inside the fabric and pinch the fabric around it at the seam. Pin it in place. Continue pinning the cording in place around the circle seam, about every 4". Sew it in place as close to the cording as possible.
Fit the sewn cover over the tire and foam to create the stool. Turn the stool over and attach the fabric to the project board using the same method as the batting. However, be very careful to watch the pattern on the sides of the stool as you work. Pull the fabric taut and make sure that any pattern lines stay even. When you get to the open, overlapping ends pull them tightly over each other and staple in place to reduce any gathering that may have occurred.
Trim away any excess fabric and use a hammer to tap down any staples that are not flush with the board. Cut a circle from the felt that is the diameter of the tire, less 2". Add hot glue to the center of the project board and press the felt in place, centered on the bottom of the stool. Run a bead of hot glue around the bottom of the stool very close to the outer edge of the felt and press it in place.