Do you have those basic wood stools somewhere in your home? We have had ours for over 20 years for sure! And although I love having them, I have grown tired of their basic and beat-up look. Today, I will show you how you can have updated Basic Wood Stools with a few simple steps. This project took me 2 days total (drying time included) and only required a mouse sander, a simple decal/stencil, black chalk paint, and some type of clear coat.
First and foremost, you want your basic wood stools to be sturdy. Tighten all bolts and screws to make sure it isn’t going to fall apart on you when sitting. Although we’ve had our stools for a very long time, they are in fabulous condition. If your stool wobbles or don’t feel sturdy, be sure to take the necessary work to make them sturdy.
You will want to gather all of your tools and items for this project ahead of time. For me, I needed my mouse sander, sander pads (40, 60, 120, and 140 grit paper), a damp rag, 3 decal/stencils cut from my Silhouette Cameo (you could order them online or cut your own), black chalk paint, a stencil dabber sponge, and any type of clear coat (I used Minwax Polyurethane). If you decide to use polyurethane, you will need rubber gloves and an old white cloth or rag. Of course, you will need your basic wood stools.
Working through the steps
The most work you will do on this project will be the sanding. Sanding took me quite a bit of time over a 2 day period but it was all worth it in the end. I started using a 40-grit sandpaper pad for my TECCPO mouse sander. Once I was able to get the old polyurethane and stain off of the stools, the rest went pretty quick. Sand your stool with 40-grit paper first. Then once the entire stool is done, move up to a 60-grit and then to 120 and 140-grit paper. The 140-grit paper will give you such a smooth finish, perfect for your stencil.
Once you have finished sanding your stool, you will want to use a damp rag and wipe off the stool very good. You do not want any sanding dust left on your stool once you start to stencil and clear coat it. Be sure to let the stool dry completely before moving onto your stencil.
Applying Stencil to the top of your wood stool
I’m very thankful that hubby purchased a Silhouette Cameo for me not to long ago. It has totally changed how I do things these days. If you do not own one of these amazing machines, you are still able to make updated basic wood stools like these as well.
There are many amazing people on Etsy who sell stencils cut with the same type of machine. They are pretty well priced and you can get just about anything you wish that matches your style. I happen to love the French Country style and went with my likes.
Once you have your stencil cut and ready to use, place it on the top of your basic wood stool. Then pull off the transfer paper. Use your stencil dabber sponge and your black chalk paint to lightly fill in your stencil. BE CAREFUL NOT TO GO OVER THE EDGE OF THE STENCIL ONTO YOUR NEWLY SANDED STOOL TOP! I applied different pressure to all of the areas on the stool. I didn’t want the full black look so I used a lighter pressure in some spots while using a harder pressure, totally filling in another area until it was dark. This part is totally up to you. Be creative!
Allow the paint to dry and then peel off the stencil. I use my scrapbooking metal ….. as I call it, my pokey thing because I don’t know what it is called ….. to remove all of the little pieces. Head on over to my YouTube Channel HERE to see all of the steps in action.
Once all of the stencil is off, it is time to clear coat your updated basic wood stool.
Applying Clear Coat to your Basic Wood Stools
There are SO many different types of clear coats out there. I love the look of a rubbed on polyurethane. Here is what I do:
**** BE WARNED: Be sure to have rubber gloves on when doing this step and using this method.
Mix your polyurethane well. Dip your white rag into the polyurethane slightly. Rub the urethane onto the stool starting at the very bottom of the legs. Work the urethane over the entire stool making sure to do the very top last. Allow to dry in a very well ventilated place for at least 3 hours. If you want your items to have a heavy coat of polyurethane, repeat entire process.
Your stools are not just basic wood stools any longer. They are now updated basic wood stools that are beautiful and what you love (I pray!). Display your stools where your normally would use them. USE THEM! Do not be afraid to use them for every day life. I love the distressed look and using them may (or may not) give you that look. Enjoy your newly updated and refreshed basic wood stools.
Want to see the process from beginning to end? Be sure to check out the video HERE! Please be sure to Subscribe and click the little bell once you are there! 🙂
You can follow along on ALL of our DIY and renovation projects on our YouTube channel but also here on the blog. DIY & RENOVATION PROJECTS