Bachelor Stool Gets a New Life


Still have any furniture hanging around from your bachelor days? We did.  Jeff had an old beat up stool that I had made him keep for the day when I could get around to giving it a makeover.   7 years later, that day finally rolled around!

We use the stool as a side table next to our couch downstairs.  It’s small enough to fit in the space and provides some extra storage space for magazines and books.  I liked the worn out look of it and would’ve been content with leaving it alone except for the fact there were words scratched and carved into it.  Words that had no meaning to us but were the names of other couples we grew up with us but are no longer together.  It had been abused and neglected for years and was in desperate need of some lovin’.

Unfortunately, I started this project before I started my blog so I do not have a picture of the stool before.  On a warm day I had sanded off the top part and then I think we ran out of sandpaper.  I apologize for not having a true “before” picture.

hot to sand down a stool

BEFORE: side of stool untouched

sand down stool

BEFORE: Stool with top sanded off already

  • electric sander and sandpaper (can do this by hand also)
  • stain
  • foam brush
  • polyurethane
Game Plan:

1. Sand down all surfaces of the stool until bare wood is exposed.

stool makeover

I used an electric sander to make the job go much quicker

2. Stain wood surfaces using a sponge brush.

stain a stool dark brady lou project guru

Use a foam brush or paint brush to stain the exposed wood

3.  After it sets desired time, wipe off stain with rag.

The longer you let the stain sit and soak into the wood, the darker the outcome.  I wanted the stool to be really dark so I waited until I had completely stained the whole stool before I wiped off excess stain.  Make sure to wipe off the excess stain otherwise it will be sticky.

how to stain bare wood

Make sure to rub off excess stain with a cloth

4. Let stain dry completely until it is no longer sticky.

I had to wait a couple of days because there was a lot of moisture in the air and I had trouble rubbing off all the excess stain.

5. Apply a thin coat of polyurethane to the stool to seal and protect it.

seal stained wood stool with two coats polyurethane

I used a fast-drying polyurethane I had on hand to seal the newly stained stool

use polyurethane to coat and finish stained wood

Apply polyurethane with a foam brush for a smooth finish

6.  After the polyurethane dries, lightly sand the wood and then remove all dust particles.

how to stain and finish bare wood

Lightly sand the dried layer of polyurethane by hand

7.  Apply a second thin coat of polyurethane and let dry.

how to stain and finish bare wood brady lou project guru

Apply a second thin coat of polyurethane

8.  Make sure to read the can of polyurethane to find the drying time needed before use.

bachelor stool gets a new life

bachelor stool gets a new life

bachelor stool gets a new life

bachelor stool gets a new life

I’m so happy with the results of this project.  I don’t know how many times my husband Jeff looked at me and said, “Why are you keeping that?”  He thought I was crazy for keeping it around but now I’m so glad I did.  Our guests will finally have somewhere to sit their drinks when they come over!

What wood piece of furniture needs a new life in your house?

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