One of my must-haves for the nursery was a spot to put up my feet. I knew a footstool of some kind would make nursing, cuddling, storytime and all the rest of baby time much more comfortable.
I love the look of the Moroccan poufs, so I was excited to find a free pattern to sew my own from Better Homes and Gardens.
I made a few modifications to my pouf. First, I lengthened the pattern just slightly. I extended the side pieces by about an inch to make my pouf a bit taller.
Another change was my fabric. Rather than using the burlap and muslin that the BHG team used in their sample, I went with a white vinyl. Wipeable, durable, good for a nursery. However, I will say that vinyl is not the easiest to sew, and as the pouf got bigger it was much more challenging to manipulate. I’m sure the burlap would be easy-peasy.
I also chose to do my top stitching by machine, rather than going with the decorative hand embroidery BHG showed. Vinyl does not fold and cannot be ironed, so the top stitching helps my seams to lay properly.
The final change was I added a zipper. Even though the vinyl is wipeable, I liked the idea of being able to remove the cover if I ever need to. So at the very bottom of the pouf, I put in a 20-inch zipper. Stitching a zipper in vinyl, especially where all the seams came together, was not my funnest sewing moment. (Again, in another fabric it would be NBD.)
To stuff the pillow, BHG recommends towels and fibre fill. I happen to have a large stash of pillows (anyone else find the search for the perfect bed pillow challenging?), so I mined that to stuff the pouf. This thing held seven full size bed pillows. Honestly, I’d love to fit an eighth in there, but I’m afraid the seams might not hold. Getting the pillows to lay smoothly inside, so that the pouf doesn’t look overly lumpy took a bit of effort.
As soon as the pouf was finished and I set it in the nursery, I was thrilled. It’s the perfect height with the chair, and the white goes well with the other elements in the room. Now that we’ve been using it for more than a month, I also have to say that I’m glad the pouf is light weight enough that I can kick it out of the way when I am trying to oh so carefully put Ellie back in her crib without waking her up.
I’m also really proud that I made this myself.
In my experience, poufs, ottomans and footstools are pretty easy to make. Even high-end poufs that I see online get my creative juices flowing as I think how I could make them myself.
Here’s a round-up if you’re looking for inspiration.
Ready-made poufs that you could DIY
If you’re looking for a Moroccan pouf similar to the one I made.
I think these buffalo check cubes were originally at Target and seem to now be discontinued, but they’d be super easy to DIY (a cube is really easy to sew). And wouldn’t the check fabric and the leather handles be perfect for a farm?
It might take a bit of searching to find a textural fabric like this, but once you do, it would be a snap to whip up this large ottoman.
Other footstools I considered
I truly love this Ikea cowhide footstool for its fit with our farm theme, but it appears to only be sold at Ikea in the US… and my DIY option was much less expen$ive.
My original nursery plan called for a lot of colourful accessories, like this beanbag ottoman.
A storage ottoman is a favourite for obvious reasons–it’s dual purpose, providing a spot to sit or rest your feet as well as a spot to stash blankets, toys or other nursery stuffs.
In the end, I’m very happy with my pouf. The price was right and so is the style.
What’s your favourite style of footstool? Have you ever made a pouf?