I admit it — I was emotionally attached to our crib and I didn’t want to sell it. We turned it into a bench that we used for a long time at our dining room table, and now it sits happily on the front porch.
The mattress, on the other end, I didn’t care about … but I also hoarded it because I felt it could come in handy for something one day. Besides, I stuck it under my son’s bed and he didn’t even realize it was there. Pinterest kept suggesting different ideas for it — a reading nook cushion, a doggie bed, a porch swing — but nothing felt right.
It was around this time that I realized I wasn’t crazy about the coffee table I refinished for My Handmade Home last January. I just wasn’t feeling the yellow anymore, but it was a super-solid wood table so I didn’t want to just get rid of it — and we have very limited storage space.
Then I realized I could kill two birds with one stone, pardon the gross and violent expression. I could store the coffee table for possible future use while also making something awesome out of the crib mattress: an upholstered ottoman!
Once I figured it out, I was off and running.
I had my Handy Husband bolt the crib’s support board (which we’d also stuck under the bed) to the coffee table to keep it firmly in place. (A piece of plywood would work just as well, if you haven’t kept your crib’s support board.) If your coffee table is rectangular and fits the mattress well, you won’t even need a board, but our mattress hung over the edges.
I bought a piece of gorgeous grey tweed with a small chevron pattern from Atlantic Fabrics. It wasn’t quite wide enough to cover the full mattress, so I wrapped spare pieces of grey fabric around the ends of the mattress and stapled them to the underside of the wood — leaving the middle of the mattress exposed.
Then I spread the tweed fabric on top of the mattress, stapled the sides underneath, and folded the ends under slightly — stapling again underneath.
To make both fabrics look like one piece, I used a needle and a bit of grey thread to blanket-stitch them together along the seam.
This would also allow you to get nice tight corners if the fabric underneath was the same fabric, which mine isn’t, of course. 😉
Since the legs of our old coffee table still peek out from the bottom, I repainted them with a bit of dark grey (Fusion Mineral Paint’s “Ash”) and they were good to go!
The coffee table underneath is completely unharmed (except for two bolt holes which could easily be filled and sanded smooth) in case we ever wanted to use it as a coffee table again. Because the upholstered mattress is secured to the piece of wood and not the table, we could also remove it cleanly and attach legs of its own.
For now, though, we’re loving our new upholstered ottoman. It’s the perfect footrest in front of our new daybed and I added a woven tray to hold drinks, snacks and remotes. This crib mattress has had quite a long, exciting life so far — and there’s a 95 per cent chance no one is going to pee on it anymore. 😉