Burlap Bar Stool redo amigas4all.com

How to Create a Charming Farmhouse Burlap Bar Stool

Creating a burlap bar stool is not difficult. The difficult part is not covering the entire house with burlap!

I just love the rustic feel of it and the earthy tones. You can add lace, stamp, print, recycled jewelry and create all sorts of things.

When I was decorating my home bar (it all started here), I decided I wanted a rustic feel to it.

If you look at my front bar chairs redo I chose burlap and added some prints to create a “faux” coffee bag look to them. Coffee bags can be pricey and burlap is not.

So it was easy to just recreate the coffee bag look with stamps and save a ton!

amigas4all, bar decor, rustic stool, rustic chair, burlap

But I needed more bar stools and tables for the home bar, but I didn’t want them to be as big as the ones in front of the bar.

See here:


And because I needed quite a few stools for each of my bar height tables (the big table and the corner table) they had to be cheap and smaller. 

The Burlap Bar Stools had to Start Somewhere

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I found these simple bar stools for only $16 bucks each. Not bad considering I needed at least 6 of them. 

Burlap Bar Stool Redo image before redo amigas4all pic

Because I wanted to create that rustic look I decided to add some dings and chips. This is optional.

I just used a hammer and chains and worked on the legs (the only visible thing after I added the burlap). Then I applied some light stain over the legs to enhance the dings.

Let it dry for a few days (don’t forget to do some light sanding over the original varnish or the stain will never stick).

Materials for the Burlap Bar Stools

  1. Bar stool (choose the height that is appropriate for your counter or bar height)
  2. Burlap (you can choose an earth tone color or any color that goes with your decor)
  3. Painter’s drop cloth or any fabric liner matching the color of the burlap
  4. Foam (choose the density according to how “tall” you want the cushion to be)
  5. Upholstery Stapler 
  6. 7/8″ Electro Galvanized Roofing nails
  7. Spray Glue
  8. Scissors
  9. Hammer 
  10. Stamp or Stencil (your design choice)
  11. Paint for the design (choose a contrasting color that matches your design)
  12. Spray paint for the nailheads

Putting the base foam and liner together

Start by cutting the foam using the stool seat as your guide. I just used a cardboard to create my pattern. Easier that way, instead of balancing the stool over the foam.

Burlap Bar stool redo cardboard image on foam amigas4all pattern

Once you have the foam sized, spray some of the spray glue over the wood seat and place the foam over it.

Let it dry for a few minutes.

burlap bar stool redo with foam upside down liner

Notice I improvised with my foam and used a piece of mattress topper because the foam I had was too thin and I was sure the husband would complain about that. Sigh!

Once the glue is dry you can start stapling the liner:

burlap bar stool liner amigas4all

Be sure to pull the liner tightly to avoid bunching on the side of the stool. You don’t want any lumps showing under your burlap.

Here it is with the liner all stapled:

Burlap bar stool redo stapled amigas4all

It’s not suuuuper perfect but it will do.

The Burlap Bar stool is finally taking shape

After the liner is in, it’s time for the burlap. This part is exciting because you can see your progress very quickly.

So just like the liner, start stapling your burlap, being careful to pull around the sides as you staple.

burlap bar stool seat after amigas4all

Now, silly me forgot to take a picture of the bar stool after stapling and before the nail heads so the pic above is just a close-up.

The next step is the fun part.

Prepping the nailheads

You will need a cardboard or any styrofoam you have available so you can line up the nails for paint. You will need quite a few nails for each stool you are creating (about 35 nails on average).

Simply stick each nail onto the cardboard or styrofoam so they are standing. Do not press all the way in because you still want part of the “stem” of the nail painted to make sure nothing shows on the side when they are nailed onto the stool.

Spray away!! They will be ready to go in an hour.

burlap bar stool nailheads prep amigas4all

Since I wanted to match the nailheads on my bar tables and the actual bar, I chose I rusty brown color for my nailheads.

burlap bar stool redo nailheads painted


amigas4all nail heads pipe table








Not quite the same color but close.

I wish I could afford real “clavos” but they are oh so pricey.

I think the “faux” ones turned out great and at a fraction of the cost.

The box comes with over 300 (1lb) of these guys and I had plenty left when I was done. The real “clavos” cost an average of $0.50c each or more. Considering you need an average of 35 nails per stool, it can add up.

Time to add the nailheads to the stool

This part can be fun or frightening at the same time. You don’t want to hammer your fingers but you also want to see the finished product too.

The first thing you need to do is cover your hammer with a little bit of foam or a folded up piece of fabric at the head of the hammer.

The reason is, if you don’t cover the hammer the painted nails can flake off or scratch and you also risk bending the nailhead.

Here is my nifty hammer:

Burlap bar stool redo hammer head amigas4all

The next step is nailing these babies to the side of the stool.

When you do, you can use a needle nose plyer to help you hold the nail while you hammer far enough that the nail won’t fly off your hand. 

But before you do all the hammering, you have one more little step:

Cut a 2 inch wide strip of burlap that is long enough to wrap around the circumference of the stool plus an inch extra just in case.

burlap bar stool strip cut amigas4all

Next, fold it on one side (1/2 in), and then fold the other side over it (you can use an iron to flatten it and make things easier).

burlap bar stool redo fold one side amigas4all

burlap bar stool redo folded twice amigas4all










Insert a nailhead onto one end of the burlap strip right in the middle:

burlap bar stool redo folded with nail

Line up that first nail with the base of the bar stool seat and hammer away, adding and separating each nail by one inch. Like so, as you continue to hold the folded strip of burlap:

burlap bar stool redo with nailhead and strip amigas4all

Here it is after all nailheads are in:

burlap bar stool all nailheads in amigas4all

Final Touches!

Now that the burlap was in, it was time to add a final touch: a printed design to spice up the decor. 

Since I was going for “Old West-y/Mexican Rustic” I decided to use a Fleur de Lis design.

You can certainly choose other designs depending on the style you are going for like seashells, starfish, arrows, the sky is the limit here.

You can buy or create your own stencils or use stamps (see my stamp tutorial here).

Here they are!!

burlap bar stool redo 3 chairs amigas4all

burlap bar stool redo 3 chairs sides amigas4all

burlap bar stool final 1 amigas4all

and here they are around one of the tables.

bar height table behind the counter left

I hope you enjoyed this project. Below is another project I worked on to add character to my home bar.

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Pinterest for more projects and updates. Also, sign up for our email list below and receive new projects right in your inbox!

Until next time!


amigas4all featured image mexican flair chalkboard menu transfer stencil lettering

Chalkboard Menu with a Mexican Flair

Ah Mexican art! I love the colors, the prints, the sworlies (is that even a word?), the Catrinas…amigas4all bar decor chalkboard menu mi casa mexico amigas4all bar decor chalkboard menu mi casa mexico trinkets

You would think these things would be cheap if you are buying them from street vendors in Mexico but not quite!

First, most street vendors are in tourist areas and of course vendors will start their prices high until you are walking out of the sale and they chase to give you that extra discount. But even so, some of these items are still expensive even with all the discounts in the world! Second, carrying some of these items home can be tricky unless you are driving or have lots of money to ship them.

While I understand that a handmade art object should receive its proper value, it is still expensive if you want to add some of these things to your collection. Also, you may not be able to visit Mexico for some reason or another (not vacation time, no money, etc, etc). So what is a girl to do? Make Mexican art right here. At home!

If you have been following our blog, you will remember that I am working on a bar decorating project (here, part deux here and part three here). The theme of the bar is Day of the Dead inspired by two of my favorite bars in Cabo (coincidentally they are owned by the same person-See pics above). So far, we have the bar counter, backbar and the bar stools (at least the ones in front of the counter-here). But now I want a menu on the wall to display some of the drinks we “offer”!

For this project, I decided that a chalkboard menu would look cool. A friend of mine was downsizing his house and he gave me this picture frame a while ago (I know, not a good photo. Oh, and the green is just tape). amigas4all bar decor chalkboard menu mexico art basic pictureI liked the sturdiness of the frame and figured one day I would use it for something. Since the print doesn’t fit the style of my house (eclectic, junk, repurposed, recycled and comfy) I thought I would just use the frame. So when I decided I wanted to start the project for the menu I thought this would be perfect. Because I was too lazy to remove the print from under the glass and decided that I would just paint over everything.

First, I’m not ashamed to say that I painted over the glass. It’s a nice solid surface and I thought, why not? Of course, I used chalkboard paint since the plan is to be able to include menu lettering and a list of drinks that we can occasionally change according to holidays or party themes.                  

As to the chalkboard paint, you can amigas4all bar decor chalkboard menu chalkboard paint mexicomake your own very easily (you can find lots of recipes on Pinterest using baking soda, plaster of paris or unsanded grout) or just buy the paint at any hardware store. I was lazy (oy) and bought mine. And yes, I didn’t save any money but I used so little that I will have chalkboard paint forever!!! I know I will use it again in some other project so all is not lost.

Because I didn’t use any primer I had to apply at least 3 coats for coverage (make sure you let it dry before applying a new coat). I’m sure if I had applied a primer (black?) it would have covered a little easier (maybe). Anyway, once all the coats were done and dry  I set out to paint the frame. I chose acrylic paint but latex would have been fine too. You can certainly use fancier frames with more curves or trims but for this project the flat frame was perfect since I was going to add my “Mexican flair” and I needed a flat surface to do that.

menu yellow paint amigas 4 all second copy

I chose a strong yellow for the frame (Mexican art has bright colors, remember?) and then added a red trim on the inside of the frame and a purple to the outside of the frame for a “POP”!(I know, hard to see the purple here)

Now for the fun part: “the flair”! On my last trip to Cabo I took some pictures of Mexican art that I liked and I thought I could use some of those images to “create” my own art. I am a little challenged when it comes to drawing so having a design to get ideas from really helped.

                        menu yellow paint amigas4all transfer original photo

I selected the design I wanted for my frame and printed the image in larger scale.
I printed the image in poster size (the picture above is actually 4 pages in 8×11 with parts of the image printed in the 4 pages). Each printer has different setting to do that so check your manual if you don’t know how to do posters. You can always take your image to an office supply store too. They will enlarge your pictures in black and white for a fraction of the cost. Once printed, I put together the “poster” by trimming any edges that prevented the image from lining up and taped to keep them together.

menu yellow paint amigas4all making a stencil for menu

I turned the poster on its back and used a pencil to fill in the back of the image (you can use chalk if the base color is dark). The picture shows me using a chalk (different project) but in this case I actually used a pencil since the base was yellow and the chalk would never show on the transfer.


I flipped the image over  and lined it up with the frame so I could start tracing the image I wanted to transfer on to the frame. From that poster all I wanted was to copy the edge detail for my frame. The other images (watermelon, rose…) I saved for another project (coming soon!). Be very careful when tracing not to move the page around or you will lose your spot. Trying to place it back where you missed is nearly impossible. 



menu yellow paint amigas 4 all transger ready on the frame

How cool is that?! No experience necessary!!

Next step is filling in the “sworlies” (trademark? LOL) by painting it. Keep in mind that even though you have a traced line to keep you within the limits of the lines you will still have some freedom to paint and add your own brush strokes to it. Don’t be afraid! The lines are there for you. The way to make it look like the professionals is to make sure that the bruch strokes are light.

In order to make these “sworlies” look right I had to practice on another surface doing  “J”s with the brush (You can use scrap wood or paper to practice). In fact, you really need to practice doing upside down “J”s and flipped “J”s.


menu yellow paint amigas 4 all upside down Js

Start with the small curve of the “J” with a little more paint on the brush and then as you are going up the long line remove some of the presure off the brush and twist it at the same time. You want to make sure that the end of the long line looks like you ran out of paint. A light stroke if you will (see below).

SSworlies amigas4all mexican art brush strokePractice the brush strokes for a while before working on the final product. Of course, once you are working on your surface if you make a mistake you can always remove the paint quickly with a wet paper towel or even paint over with the base color. Notice that the purpose of the “J” is to make sure that the design has a natural curve on the round part and a whispy finish. However, you will come back to the top of the “teardrop” and will fill it in so it looks like a long drop and not an actual “J”.

Needless to say, start painting the frame from left to right (or vice versa if you are left handed) but always make sure to be painting away from the place you started so no accidents happen. After the paint dries, you can clean it with a light wet rag to remove the pencil marks off the surface and voila! Or better yet: !Aqui esta¡ Su arte! – Your Art!

Sworlies amigas4all mexican art brush stroke final product


Looks very cool already!

Join me next time to see how I did the lettering on my chalkboard menu (Of course, if you are impatient like me, you can check Pinterest for some lettering tecniques or you can free hand it.

Until then…Cheers!


image of bar stool redo with diy coffee bag amigas4all

Bar Decorating Part 3-Bar Stools!

The bar decorating continues with more updates to these rustic bar stools a friend found on Craigslist.

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I showed you in part 2 what I did to bring these bar stools back to life by cleaning them up and staining them in a light color just to give them some “hydration”.

Today, I will show you how I made my bar stools more comfy and how added stenciled letters to give them some personality! Follow me in this new and exciting chapter of my bar decorating saga (it all started with the first chapter with my bar decorating post).

Personalizing the Bar Stools

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Now that the bar stools were breathing again, I decided to hide some of the imperfections I mentioned on part Deux like the warped seat for example (see below).

bar stools redo amigas4all

To do that I decided that cushions would do the trick. I could also tell that these chairs were pretty hard to sit for a  long time.

We all know that if the game is on it can take a long, looong time to end (yes, the hubs complained also about the hard seats!). So, I figured I needed to make them a little more comfy.

At first, I thought about buying “ready made” cushions from my usual “decorating on a budget stores”. I reaaally wanted these cushions I found on Amazon.


They were comfy and the right color. And I could still personalize them.

Unfortunately, my bar stools were too weird of a size and nothing fit. Sniff! 

The seats are pretty wide and all the cushions I found for purchase were two inches too short in every direction. I thought if I used smaller cushions they would look goofy. So buying was out and I was going to make the cushions myself.

Deciding the materials for the project

When I decided to make cushions I realized that making individual removable cushions would take too much fabric because of the size of the seats. The easiest and cheapest way to do this was to just upholster the seat instead.

Since I wanted to give it a rustic look I thought burlap would do the trick. Burlap is cheap and very versatile (You can get a good quality burlap here for a fraction of the cost).

The other thing I wanted to do was personalize it and make it look like old coffee bags. Let’s get this party started!

materials you will need for the cushions: 

How to upholster The Cushions

I started with foam cut to size.

amigas4all, bar redo, chair, rustic stool, rustic chair, bar decor, burlap, foam

(notice I had to add more foam to make it the size of the chair-I used what I had a home).

Then I cut the burlap with enough material left to cover the foam on the top, sides and under. Once the burlap was lined up, I stapled it to the underside of the chair.

bar stools redo amigas4all

Be careful with the corners! They can be a little tricky to fold and staple. But if you are old school like me I am sure you covered your school books with paper to protect them. So you will know what to do with the corners.

Or if you never did that you can just fold them carefully like an envelope or a “V”. Staple them firmly so they don’t pop out or look bunched up.

amigas4all bar redo rustic bar stools bar decorating corner

It’s not the best picture but you get the idea.

So now that all 4 chairs are “burlapped TM”, it was time to give them a little more personality.

Since I used new burlap I needed to make them look a little more “used”. Or better yet, I wanted them to look like discarded coffee bags!

Of course, because us DIYers fell in love with the whole rustic “everything” these coffee bags have gone up in price. A lot! I have seen coffee bags as high as $50 a piece!!

Luckily if you go to Amazon they have a good selection of decently priced coffee bags for you. Unfortunately, because of my weirdly sized chairs, I needed everything custom sized.  So I had to make my own “faux” coffee bags. It’s all right. I like a challenge like that anyway.

materials to MAke the “faux” coffee bag 

It was actually easy. All you will need is burlap and paint! Ok, you need a few more things but here is the list:

As for the colors, since I’m going for the coffee bag look I thought I would use blacks, blues, reds and greens.

The trick to getting the “coffee bag look” right

The colors in these coffee bags tend to be bold colors. But they have to look worn too so you need to go easy on the amount of paint or they won’t look right. Like these, for example:

amazon coffee bags

Make sure when you paint that you grab just a little bit of paint first with your sponge. Then use a plastic lid or another surface to tap on your sponge before applying it on to the stencil. 

You can use ready made stencils or even print letters and other designs online. You can also create your own stencil. It all depends on the look you want and if you have the time to cut each letter (that’s a lot of work!).

I chose a ready made stencil and used the letters and the cut outs to create more letters and design different logos for my “coffee bags” like the ones below:

amigas4all, bar redo, chair, rustic stool, rustic chair, bar decor, burlap, stencil

amigas4all, bar redo, chair, rustic stool, rustic chair, bar decor, burlap, bar stools amigas4all, bar redo, bar stool, bar decor, rustic chair, rustic stool, bar stools 

Wrapping it up! Pun Intended!

For an extra special touch of Mexican Flair (the theme of my home bar), I wrapped these Mexican scarves to the back of the bar stools (see below). I saw something similar done in a restaurant in Cabo San Lucas (my favorite place in the world!) and I wanted it for my own bar.

It was so cool to bring a little piece of paradise into my home!

amigas4 all, bar redo, stool, rustic stool, chair, bar chair, bar stools

And here are all my “pretties” together, singing in harmony!

amigas5all, bar redo, stool, rustic stools, bar stools, bar chair redo

You can certainly create even more designs and use different style stencils. For my bar I wanted them rustic, “beat-up” and “worn”. I think it’s pretty close.

And yes, I know none of them have coffee written on them but you get the idea. Aren’t these chairs the coolest?! I hope you liked them.

Join me in the next episode of the bar decorating saga. I will show you how I transformed some run-of the-mill bar stools into more seating for the bar. And without taking too much space.

You will use the same concepts we learned today (yes, more stools! and yes, it will be worth it!) .





Decorate a Bar With Primitive Mexican Painting DIY and Save a Bundle!

I love Primitive Mexican Painting. But they cost a lot of money. Even in non-touristy areas, it is hard to find a Primitive Mexican Painting that will not break the bank. At least in my book.

So I decided I was going to DIY my Primitive Mexican Painting! Or Paintings, since I can’t just have one!

But before we get into that I will tell you a little bit about the research that went into finding the art I wanted to make.

The research (ahem, “shopping”)

Amigas4all primitive mexican painting diy do it yourself diy living thrifty angelThe Primitive Mexican Painting you see in the pictures are not mine but inspirational pieces! Each would have cost over $150 per picture on the average.

Way too much since I wanted to add several in the bar I’m decorating with a Mexican/Day-of-the-Dead theme. I sure didn’t want to pay that much.

So I decided to use some of these ideas to create my own art. And you can certainly get inspired and try your own style.

You may even free hand it if you have the skills I sure don’t have! While I can do a little bit of everything in life I was never a painter. But this one is actually is easy even for the paint-challenged like me.

The Materials for a primitive MExican painting

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All you need is a photo of the art you like. PAmigas4all primitive mexican painting diy do it yourself diy living thrifty katrinarovided you are not selling copyrighted material you can certainly copy and modify it so it does not violate any laws or rights. Personal use only!

You will also need an old board, log, tray or rustic surface to create this art. Old windows or doors can also be used for a statement piece in a room or entryway!

These are so cool it will look like you traveled the world and brought some pieces with you.

Finally, you will need a good qualify acrylic paint (here’s where to get a kit) and a printer (black and white is just fine 

So first, start your research on the images you like to try. If you have traveled somewhere exotic you can also use those images. We will talk about the transfer process in the next post (but here is the link if you want to start now).

In the meantime, you can check what I have done so far with my bar decorating part 1decorating with bar stools part 2 and finalizing the bar stools part 3.

See you soon!

Bar Stool Redo part deux amigas4all.com

How I Brought My New “Old” Bar Stools Back To Life-Bar Decorating Part Deux!

 bar stools, DIY, restoration, furniture to life, restore furniture, restoring furniture, bar decorating, bar of our dreams, new "old" chairs, stain, how toOh! The “Wild West” home bar of our dreams …but no bar stools to match!

As you saw in part 1 of our bar decorating saga (here’s part 1) we managed to get the bar of our dreams in a bargain deal, but when we were looking for the chairs we were shocked to discover how expensive they were, especially if you wanted to use a rustic style.

Out of Our Price Range

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Some of these bar stools were more expensive than a car!! Who pays $1000 for bar stools? No offense to those who can, but seriously?! My head was going 1000 miles per hour thinking: Who in the world could pay for 5 bar stools if they were that expensive?

And the look I wanted complicated things. I wanted something “Old West” or Rustic style like this:

bar stool redo image sample

The price wasn’t bad but I just could not afford 5 of them. So, I looked here, there and everywhere for something similar. 

How We Found Our Bar Stools!!

I engaged the help of my research queen and friend “McGiver” Carol. She lives in a place where there are a lot of Mexican goodies including rustic furniture, just the way I needed.

She searched a little bit and wouldn’t you know, she found them! And after a little bit of back and forth, she was able to buy them for $35 each! Guess how much these are brand new? 260 bucks! 

The bar stools looked perfect in the room (Here are some more pictures). They were only selling 4 stools but we figured out later that 5 bar stools would have looked a little cluttered.

Especially when you add two more tables and bar stools around them as I later did (see my posts for table 1 here and table 2 here).

Getting the bar stools refinished

The first thing I needed to do was give them a good scrubbing.

Once that was done the bar stools were ready to be restored. I mean, ready to be stained.

Note that the wooden seat in one of the chairs was deformed and the other was separated.

I could have just replaced the wooden seats with a new wood base, but I thought that even if I sanded all the wood around the legs and back, they would never match the rest of the chair no matter how much I tried. I later decided to upholster the seats (here’s how I did it)

But before that, I started by nailing the warped seat to level it a little. Even if the seat was not perfectly level the foam and fabric would certainly hide the problem. 

The other bar stools had other minor imperfections and they were easy to fix. But once the bar stools were stained they would still have some “character” since they would still show that they had a previous life somewhere.

In other words, they would not be the cookie cutter stuff you find with faux rustic stuff. These were the real deal. Especially because the wood in my bar is completely rustic. It has even wormwood holes in it!

Love rustic everything!!!

The next task was to stain them. I opted for two colors of stain: one to bring life to the wood – Minwax Wood Finish Stain- Color Provincial 211 (a little more yellow). Then Minwax Wood Finish Stain – Color Red Chestnut 232, a more reddish color to change the pale appearance and match at least some points of the wood in my bar (see).

So here’s the final product! I know it’s hard to see but these chairs were very dull and ready to crack because of dehydration.

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Here are some of my dream picks for this post:

Join us for the next step, the upholstery project, and see how simple it is to give life to a stool/chair by simply adding foam and fabric!

It is not difficult, and it is super fun to see the final product. And you can tell everyone that you made it yourself! Let us see your project in the comments below!

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See you in a jiffy,