How to Make a DIY Ottoman

Item # X-HT-300512

An ottoman is a simple, easy footstool that can provide much-needed comfort while resting. Our comprehensive video tutorial will show you how to make a DIY ottoman. To do this, we will be layering foam to achieve our desired ottoman height and thickness. Follow along as we explain the technique, tips and tricks that are needed to craft a unique, cozy ottoman.

Learn how to make an ottoman with our tutorial.

Whether you're using your ottoman as a footstool, a patio element or extra seating for family gatherings, you can tweak the construction process to suit your unique needs. Talk about versatility! We've made two ottomans in our video tutorial. One is covered in Sunbrella® Horizon vinyl fabric and the other is covered in Crypton® Home upholstery fabric. Although the construction of both ottomans is very similar, we've covered them in different fabrics because they will be used in different locations. The vinyl-covered ottoman will be used on a boat, so it has to be waterproof and weatherproof. However, the upholstery fabric-covered ottoman will be used inside a home, so it doesn't need to be waterproof. We would recommend a vinyl for any ottoman that will be outdoors, but inside there's much more flexibility. Refer to our blog "How to Choose Upholstery Fabric" (#300010XHT) for help picking the right interior fabric.

The construction of our square ottoman is quite simple — it consists of layers of foam glued together and then covered in a durable fabric. There's no wood frame involved! If you plan to use your ottoman as just a footstool, you could cut, layer and glue one sheet of CushionRite® Standard Antimicrobial Foam that is six inches thick. But if you plan to sit on your ottoman, you'll need to use CushionRite® Premium Antimicrobial Foam (Firm). That's because this foam has a higher density rating and can withstand extra weight as a seating surface. If you'd like to learn more about the differences between types of foam and which is best for you, check out our blog, "Foam Series: Comparing Types of Cushion Foam" (#300053XHT).

Still have questions about this project? Don't hesitate to reach out to our customer support staff via email, phone or the chat function on our website. We're always here to help!

Video Chapters:

  • Cutting & Gluing Foam Layers — 0:59 min
  • Cutting Fabric to Size — 7:47 min
  • Sewing Channeling in Top — 12:35 min
  • Sewing “U” Shaped Zipper in Bottom — 18:57 min
  • Joining Boxing Ends — 30:03 min
  • Joining Boxing to Top Plate — 32:01 min
  • Sewing a Top Stitch — 37:44 min
  • Joining Assembly to Bottom Plate — 43:43 min
  • Inserting Foam in Cover — 47:34 min
  • Materials & Tools List — 51:45 min

Materials List:

  • CushionRite® Premium Antimicrobial Foam (Firm) — (#124236)
  • Foam Lock Spray Adhesive 12 oz. — (#120464)
  • Sunbrella® Horizon Vinyl Fabric 54" — we used Textil Charcoal (#10201-0004)
  • Cushion Underlining Fabric from Sailrite®
  • Fabric Backed 1/4" Sew Foam 58" (5 yds.) — (#124306) (if sewing in channeling)
  • Thread Tex 90 White Polyester UV 4 oz. (1,350 yds.) — (#100079)
  • YKK® Continuous Zipper Chain #4.5 White (Coil Chain) — (#104385)
  • Seamstick 1/4" Basting Tape for Canvas & Upholstery (36 yds.) — (#122065)
  • YKK® Zipper Slider #4.5 White Metal Single Non‑Locking Pull (Coil Chain) — (#104335)
  • Cushion Wrap Silk Film 54" (10 yds.) — (#103933)

Tools List:

  • Sailrite® Blade Foam Saw V2 with Carrying Case — (#121244)
  • Clear Acrylic Ruler 6" x 24" — (#102400)
  • Comfort Grip Rotary Cutter 60mm — (#9655)
  • Self Healing Rotary Cutting Mat 24" x 36" — (#120257)
  • Gingher® Scissors Right Hand Lightweight 8" — (#101017)
  • Triangle Tailor's Chalk ‑ White — (#121912) (if sewing in channeling)
  • Sailrite® Ultrafeed® LSZ Walking Foot Sewing Machine (100-230V) — (#300600)
  • Sailrite® Ultrafeed® Industrial Sewing Table — (#120934)
  • Seam Ripper Deluxe — (#18104)
  • Marker, Straightedge, Pencil