From Shabby to Chic! Up-cycled Step Stool!

Hi friends! Let’s face it, I’m short. At least at 5’4″ I feel short when I am trying to reach some art supply I have stacked to the ceiling in my craft room! 😀 I decided I should stop risking my life standing on my rolling chair every time I needed to reach something and find a sturdy step stool. Turns out we still had a step stool from when the kids were little but it had seen better days…


…it was banged up and had some weird adhesive stickiness on the top from when one of my daughters covered it with fancy duct tape but I love projects like this because there is no place to go but up! Since I am extremely lazy I decided to wet-wipe that bad-boy down and slap on a coat of Heirloom Traditions chalk paint. Let me tell you chalk paint is the best thing to happen to a lazy crafter, just sayn. That is ALL I had to do to prepare this step stool for the stenciling, decoupaging and ink jet gel transfer techniques I will share with you in today’s video!


This is an easy project perfect for a beginner!

Supplies available at Heirloom Traditions Paint, save 10% with coupon code FRUGAL



  1. Wipe down the stool with a damp rag and apply a coat of chalk paint. *You can apply another coat if need be.
  2. Stencil on designs in colors that match your them. I was going for French country shabby chic.
  3. Paint a layer of 1gel (gently with a soft brush) on your ink jet print and press it to the stool. Smooth it down and let dry for at least an hour.
  4. Spray the ink jet paper with water and carefully rub away the paper.
  5. Seal the stool with another coat of 1gel and while that is still wet add your collage elements. I cut up a pretty calendar I bought last year at the dollar store, it was perfect for this!
  6. Add spray wax if desired.

Tips: You can sand back the colored wax if you got a bit carried away or if you want ti distress the piece. I found out later that a wet sponge or brush would have given me the look I was after. 🙂 When you decoupage be sure to add 1gel to the back of your paper as well as the surface you are applying to and them add a coat of 1gel on top for a perfect finish.


I hope you enjoyed this project and it inspired you to spruce up some old thing around your house! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!



13 Responses

  1. That’s really nice, very sweet.


  2. That is so cool, but too pretty to step on and risk getting shoe prints on it I think. LOL


  3. WOW Lindsay! That turned out AMAZING!


  4. Soooo adorable!


  5. oh my you did a great job just like you always do every thing you paint or stamps turns out so perfact always I love your stool…take care ,
    God bless.


  6. Love your stool! It’s too pretty to stand on!


  7. Thank you. I am 5’4″ too. And it is definitely short in 2016. I love what you did with the step stool. Wish I had one to decorate! Might need to go to some yard sales.

    Thanks, BJ Nichol

    Sent from my iPad



  8. What a metamorphose! Congratulations, Lindsay!
    I do not know the weight of the stool, nor do I know how you carry it from place to place without a grip-hole in the top. My solution would be to nail a little bar of wood to the underside of the top, near to the front, to allow a hand to get a firm grip.

    P.S.: Can’t say you fit my idea of a lazy person!!!


  9. I feel your pain…I’m 5’2. I love the stool! Fantastic job!


  10. Wow, beautiful job Lindsay! I’m glad you listed all the supplies. That’s a great idea about using the calendar. I have some really pretty ones I’ve saved over the last couple of years— Now I know what I’m going to do with them!


  11. love love love it!


  12. I have one just like it and need to redo it Thanks for the tips.


  13. This is so lovely!


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