Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Transforming an IKEA step stool

How good is a make over from other people's unwanted furniture? Ok, so this isn't a cute little vintage piece rescued from the side of the road but I love how it turned out.

Our neighbours were throwing out a little IKEA Bekvam step stool and they offered it to me first.  I have been wanting a little step for the kitchen for ages but hadn't got around to finding one.  Well actually I did find one ages ago when we were renovating our kitchen but it was $150 (are you kidding me!) so I wasn't forking out that just so the kids can reach the bench top properly and I can get stuff out of the top of the pantry without dragging a dining room chair over and standing on the upholstered seat.

This is one little makeover that I'm very happy about. I don't have a before photo but this step stool has had a very hard life. Our neighbours have 3 kids and the stool was initially raw pine and not sealed and by the time it got to me 8 years on, it was stained with dirt and filthy black.  I sanded down the step surfaces with my new random orbital sander (I'm so in love with this power tool) and then stained them with a dark walnut stain and sealed it with 2 coats of Porter's Clearcote.  

I primed and painted the base of the stool in a basic white.  I usually use a matte paint and then use a sealer or wax but for this project I used Taubman's Acrylic Enamel Trim.  I also added little nailed-in scratch protectors as I really like my NSW Spotted Gum floorboards and don't want them scratched by the kids dragging this little beauty across them.

I love the two toned look and didn't want to be wiping down the steps the whole time which I'm sure I would be if they were white.  I can imagine if they were all white they'd be looking grubby in no time. But seriously, who would ever think pine could look so good - and so "not-pine-ish".  I love walnut stain.  A lot of the other coloured stains are too reddish for me, but the dark walnut always turns out so nicely.

These little stools retail for only $14.99 so that a lot of money saved on the stool I originally wanted even if I had bought it myself.  Here's what it looks like new from IKEA. Although this is definitely NOT what I began with!

Do you have some IKEA raw pine furniture that you want to give a quick makeover to? I showed a couple of my friends this stool and they have decided we are having an IKEA stool makeover at my house next week. Actually one of them was laughing that she might turn up with her sideboard to paint also!  Too funny. Bring some champagne, a paint brush and bring it on...

I've just finished seasoning a chalk board which is a big effort for me as I really hate handling chalk! I'll show you tomorrow. This next project is turning out quite well.

Also happy birthday today to my little girl! She is honestly the nicest person I know and I love her so very much.  Such a beautiful caring heart and growing up oh so very quickly.

My daughter shares her birthday with her aunt (Phil's older sister) which is very special. Happy birthday Al! Looking forward to celebrating another birthday with you also!

Fiona xx

Sharing at The Shabby Creek Cottage , DIY by Design , Primitive&Proper , Feathered Nest Fridays at French Country Cottage


  1. Happy Birthday to your beautiful daughter! How old is she? I have the same step-stool in my wardrobe and have thought about painting it a different colour, but love your idea of 2 tone! Mx

  2. That's a great stool - and so handy for the kitchen. With a 3 year old and a 1 year old, it's something I'll be keeping an eye out for.

    I'd love to hear what brand orbital sander you have. I was looking this week, but had to abandon due to crying (not mine ;) )!

  3. Happy Birthday Sasha!

    Love the stool makeover...I'd love to have an excuse to buy one of the Ikea ones but I already have two vintage chrome stepstools with oilcloth tops that are very cute (and get heaps of use!), plus a little wooden stool for the bathroom sink that was a taller stool I cut the legs off. It is on its second paintjob after I got sick of the first colour :)

  4. I have way to many stools...I have a thing about them..... always looking for another :) You did a beautiful job as always. Happy Birthday to your beautiful girl xx

  5. The stool looks great, Fi, and it's almost exactly what we are trying to do with an old pine trestle table that we are turning into a computer desk! Sean bought the walnut stain on the weekend, and painted a test patch underneath. It will take two coats to get it dark enough. We're trying to find the right yellow colour for the legs to match some other furniture in the room.

    The church around the corner from us has a stack of 9' pine trestle tables for sale, also a couple of 6' ones. If anyone in Melb is looking for trestles to revamp, they have plenty!

  6. Fiona this stool is so cute.I would love it for my kitchen so the Demon child could get into more mischief....Seriously though your paint Ikea day makes me so jealous.Have fun and have a drink for me-dee

  7. the stool looks awesome and your photos look beautiful!

  8. The stool turned out perfect! Great idea! I’d love for you to share at my party…it just opened! XO, Aimee

  9. Beautiful job! I love it! I've been on the hunt for something similar. Will have to check Ikea to see if they still have it. ;) Thanks so much for sharing!

  10. I am most impressed! These are awesome!

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  12. Hi - the stool looks great! I'm looking to do something similar with the Ikea Bekvam Kitchen Trolley. What brand stain did you use?

    1. hi - I am not sure now but probably wattyl stain master. the copper coloured tins. cheers Fiona


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