DIY Storage Ottoman

diy storage ottoman

How long has it been since my last real DIY post? July? I think so. I’ve been so busy with the apartment and work, but I’m slowly getting things sorted and I can actually focus on smaller projects now.

One of those small projects I’ve been dying to do is this storage ottoman/pouf. When I first moved in I wanted to get a table for my sofa. I was unable to find one that I liked and soon I realised maybe a table wasn’t such a good idea after all. The door table I made last week already takes up a substantial amount of the room and having yet another table so close to it would just look weird. Plus, my sofa sort of requires having somewhere to put your feet up if you want to be 100% comfortable. So, enter the DIY Storage Ottoman!

It took me a while to figure out what I could use as a base that was sturdy enough to hold both stuff and a person sitting on it, but then I found these large buckets made for mixing grout/plaster in the hardware store. The bucket I bought is supposed to hold 50 kg, more than enough. It’s also perfect in size, wide enough to double as as a table and low enough to have legs.

supplies for ottoman diy

I also had to get two pieces of wood for the bottom and the top/lid. I don’t have any photos of this, but I sawed out two circles a big as the bottom and the top of the bucket.

For the filling I used one layer (about 1, 5 cm) of foam around the bucket and two layers of the same foam on the lid.

I used a staple gun to fasten the two layers of fabric I used. For the first layer over the foam I chose a white cotton fabric. The outer layer is white faux leather/vinyl.

Using a good, heavy duty staple gun is a MUST!

I started out by wrapping the foam around my bucket.

wrap foam 1

I sewed it together at the side.

wrap foam 1

As I wanted my ottoman to have legs, I drilled four holes in the bottom through the bucket and bottom wood plate.

drill holes for pegs

I added the screws before I started to add any fabric.


I cut the edges of the lid’s two foam layers to give them a rounded shape.

top foam

Stapled on the first layer of fabric.

staple cotton 1

Added the fabric to the bucket.

staple cotton 2

Sewed it together.

staple cotton 3

And then everything looked like this.

staple cotton 4

This was the most critical step of making my ottoman. The seam on the bucket. On the first layer of fabric I could do a half-assed job, but not on the outer layer! I pinned it carefully and then used double button thread to sew it.

staple faux leather 1

staple faux leather 2

Initially the fabric got a bit wrinkly, but I was able to smooth it out. Now, as I write this a few days later, it has smoothened out itself.

staple faux leather 3

I decided to just leave the excess fabric inside the bucket. Nobody’s going to see that anyway.

staple faux leather 4

I made the legs from a uhm… yeah. I have no idea what it’s called in English. Google translate says it’s “bead” but I have no idea if that’s correct or not. Anyway I bought a 1 meter “bead”-stick-thing, cut out four pieces for legs and drilled a hole in each of them.


Found where the screws where and stuck them through the fabric.

legs 2

Attached the legs.

legs 3

Added the outer fabric to the lid.

staple top 1

And my ottoman was done!

staple top 2

ottoman at night

The day after I finished it I decided it needed something more, so I added handles to the sides. It’s really easy to move around now!

pouf ottoman with handles

And I just have to include this close-up of the seam on the side. I’m so glad I didn’t screw this part up…haha.

seam detail

And hey, how gorgeous is this black tray with gold handles from IKEA’s Ryssby line? I love it! And it goes perfectly with the pouf!

diy ottoman bucket storage

I think I will keep candles and stuff in it. :D

Here are some other bucket ottoman tutorials I like:

diy bucket ottoman pouf tutorials

Mini OttomanBrit + Co

Utility Bucket OttomanDesign Sponge || Bucket PoufPretty Little Lady Design

How cute isn’t that furry one from Pretty Little Lady Designs?!



DIY Storage Ottoman — 5 Comments

  1. Well done! I love the way you make it out of “nothing”.
    Storage ottomans where quite common Fifty- sixty years ago. You may find them at a flea market or thrift store. I give them a new life with old embroideries. You will find some here:
    or visit my workshop at Garvargatan 20, Kungsholmen, Stockholm.

    Keep recycling!

  2. Hello,
    Thanks for sharing the Ottoman DIY, it is a great idea, and you did an amzing job. Working with white color material is very unforgiving, however your ottoman table looks perfect!. I am considering making one, bi-color would be pretty. And I would probably install small wheels instead of feet. My question is : is the bucket made of plastic? I worry it might not be strong enough for me to sit on it…Thanks a lot!
    Stephanie (in Paris)

    • I almost put wheels on mine too, I think it would look really cool. And I agree about white being a little un-practical, I choose faux leather basically because it’s easier to clean then other fabric.
      The bucket I used is made to hold concrete, so it’s REALLY sturdy even though it’s made of plastic. I probably wouldn’t sit too much or too violently (lol) on it though.

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