The Creative Pool Noodle DIY That Breathes New Life Into A Thrifted Chair

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If you're someone who enjoys finding the perfect piece of thrifted home décor, you know the feeling of spying a great chair, only to end up passing up the piece when it becomes clear that it is just a little too rough around the edges. Trying to rehab a piece of furniture on your own can feel intimidating, and the process can eliminate the cost-effectiveness of thrifting. Fortunately, the creative thrifters and DIYers of TikTok have crossed many money-saving bridges (from making flower arranging easier to creating stylish headboards from pool noodles) in the name of the collective.

If you have access to a few pool needles, a throw blanket, fabric scissors, a staple gun, and a hot glue gun with glue sticks, you can craft a tufted chair for a fraction of the price of having one professionally restored. Grab your chair, your tools, and your supplies, and prepare to amaze yourself with your DIY savvy by taking inspiration from the work of TikTok's ericadoesitherself, also known as Erica Christianson. 

How to make over a chair using pool noodles

Making over a chair using pool noodles is a surprisingly simple procedure. First, remove the seat cushion from the chair. Then, cut the pool noodles vertically in half. Next, cut the halves to match the length of the chair's back. If your chair requires many different lengths, Erica Christianson recommends numbering your pool noodle pieces to keep track of where they belong in the lineup. Use hot glue to attach the pool noodle pieces to the chair back's felt or foam covering. If your chair is missing its foam or felt covering, you can purchase three yards of Home Sewing Depot cambric for $11.99 on Amazon.

Once your pool noodles are in place along the chair's back, cut a piece of your throw blanket to fit the back and arms. Cover the back and arms, and staple the blanket in place along the edges. Once the blanket is secure, return to the edges and use scissors to remove any excess fabric. Finally, cut the hemmed edge from the blanket and hot glue it around the edges of the covered chair to cover the raw fabric edges. Use your fabric scissors to cut a piece of the blanket sized for your chair's cushion, attach the piece using the staple gun, and reattach the cushion to the chair. Then, stand back and admire your work. 

Optional embellishments to enhance your pool noodle chair makeover

While Erica Christianson's video tutorial is a great place to start for your pool noodle makeover, there are many ways in which you could elevate the basics of the project for a more polished result. First, consider painting or staining your chair before beginning. This could be done various ways, such as using metallic paint to create the appearance of metal chair legs, even where there aren't any. You can also get creative with the color or pattern of your throw blanket.

If you'd like to accentuate the tufted nature that the pool noodles bring to the chair back, you can add furniture tacks between the noodles. Simply press tacks through the felt and into the wood between the pool noodles to create tufts. For wider tufts, place a tack between every two or three pool noodles. You can snag a 100-pack of Homdire decorative copper tacks for $7.99 on Amazon. Style your chair by adding a coordinating throw pillow or ottoman, and no one would ever guess you found the chair for cheap.