Living Green: How to Create an Ottoman from a Wooden Pallet

Home Stager with Foxy Interiors Inc. Lake Mary Florida



We all hear of living green, green design, recycling, reusing, up cycling and saving the environment.  Our children learn about these topics in school.  You study about them in college.  You may have received certification to reflect that you have studied these topics.  The bigger question:  Are you doing your part to save the environment?

My son is taking AP Environmental Science in high school.  The topics they study greatly interest me.  My son and I viewed a 20 minute video together the other night Story of Stuff, Full Version; How Things Work, About Stuff.  What I learned, unfortunately, is that we are destroying mother earth – the very creation that sustains our lives. This video is well worth watching and you, too, will agree we’re caught up in a vicious cycle.

At home our family recycles and we have water-saving irrigation, toilets, dishwasher, and a washing machine.  To further continue the conservation of water and reuse/recycle efforts, one afternoon during a stroll, I found a wooden pallet by the trash.  I asked around to make sure it was okay to take and, with permission, I put it into the back of my car.  I did some web research to go idea seeking and decided to make an ottoman.

Ottomans seem easy to make probably because Jim, my husband, likes to build things.  I like the feel and texture of fabrics and making objects look pretty.  If you want to try this at home, I’ve included a materials list and instructions below.


Materials List for 36” Square Ottoman

Four 9” unfinished turned legs [The hardware items we purchased from Lowe's.]

Four triangle brackets for leg mounts

¼” plywood to create a foundation to secure the materials and to close in the sides

1-1/2 yards black speaker netting (for the bottom)

1-3/4 yards upholstery fabric

5” foam (36” x 36” square) [This is costly so shop with your coupons.  We went to Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store.]

1-3/4 yards polyester batting [The kind used for making quilts.]






  • Locate a wooden pallet, preferably one near the closest dumpster.
  • Go shopping for the items on the materials list.
  • Cut the plywood and secure to the sides to make a stable frame.
  • Finish the turned legs in your favorite color stain and seal.
  • Lay the foam on your foundation.
  • Wrap the top and sides with the polyester batting on top of the foam.
  • Cover with fabric, carefully wrapping the corners.  [Jim is particularly good at this because the plumber side of him comes through from forming shower pans.  I know, lucky me, right?]
  • Use a staple gun to secure at the bottom.
  • Lay the speaker netting on the bottom and carefully turn under the edge and staple into a finished edge.

For more detailed photos of this ottoman, visit our Houzz page by clicking this link.


Enjoy your creation and remember that you have just helped the environment by repurposing a wooden pallet that otherwise may have ended up in the landfill.


Thanks for dropping by and reading Living Green:  How to Create an Ottoman from a Wooden Pallet.  If you decide to try this at home, drop back by and let me know how your creation turned out.

Posted by


“Foxy Interiors Inc. made our kitchen and living room redesign a reality. They were wonderful to work with every step of the way. We met with them on site to discuss our desire for a design “reset” and to review our options for reviving the space. Our home has modern lines but it lost its luster in a sea of dated wall and cabinet colors and clutter. They took in to account our likes and dislikes and offered many options for our consideration from paint colors and fabrics to finishes and textures. They developed a clear estimate per service offered. Their suggestions for enhancements made the biggest difference in the outcome of the redesign. For example, crown molding on the cabinets and an accent color for the breakfast nook resulted in an upscale redesign. We will definitely call on them again for their design and renovation expertise. We love our new space and highly recommend Foxy Interiors Inc. for your transformation! “


View our portfolio at Foxy Interiors Incorporated.


RESA PRO home stager in lake mary floridaFOXY INTERIORS CENTRAL FLORIDA



Serving the Central Florida market from Orlando north to Daytona Beach providing home staging, redesign, and renovation services.

Marie Fox, President

James Hays, Vice President (407) 715-1737 

Follow these links to learn about Central Florida:

Lake Mary-Heathrow, Florida

Orlando, Florida

Daytona Beach, Florida




This entry hasn't been re-blogged:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
Home Improvement
Stage It Forward...
The Lounge at Active Rain
Florida Rain Makers
Florida Real Estate Investors
living green
green design
uses for wooden pallets
home remodelers in volusia county
home remodelers in seminole county

Spam prevention
Show All Comments
Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging
Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR - Portland, OR
"Staging Consultations that Sell Portland Homes"

Marie ~ That's a great idea for recycling old pallets, which you can find in many spots.  What is the total cost of your ottoman makeover?

Oct 05, 2012 04:20 AM #1
Marie Fox
Foxy Interiors Inc. Lake Mary Florida - Lake Mary, FL
Lake Mary, Florida, Home Stager & RE Photographer
Hi Maureen, total cost is under $150. The upholstery fabric was 50% off the day we shopped. The foam is pricey and even 4" thick would probably work. Thanks for stopping by. Have a great weekend.
Oct 05, 2012 08:34 AM #2
Melissa Marro
Keller Williams First Coast Realty - The Marro Team - Orange Park, FL
Jacksonville Real Estate and Home Staging

nice job. I was thinking about this just a few days ago. I keep seeing them on Pinterest and it looks like a fairly easy project. 

Oct 06, 2012 11:21 AM #3

Could you provide a little more detail on how to do the corners well?  I have seen so many of these on the internet, and the corners seem to make all the difference as to whether the ottoman looks "professional" or not.  Yours looks amazing!  Thank you.

Oct 25, 2012 10:29 PM #4
Marie Fox
Foxy Interiors Inc. Lake Mary Florida - Lake Mary, FL
Lake Mary, Florida, Home Stager & RE Photographer

Hello DC, thanks for dropping by and for your compliment.  Since there are two types of corners on an ottoman -- vertical and horizontal -- I'm going to address your question two ways.  Keep in mind that one continuous piece of fabric is used in making this ottoman; there are no sewn seams. 

For the long horizontal corners (where the top meets the sides) this is wrapped in quilting batting over the foam which lends itself to softened curves when the fabric is pulled tight over it. 

For the short vertical corners:  Turn the ottoman upside down.  Working with one ottoman side, tighten the fabric over that side bringing the excess fabric to the bottom and put a couple staples in the fabric near the center to hold it there.  Stay away from the corners though.  Smooth the fabric toward the corner, wrapping it to the other side.  On the 'new' side, take your finger and push it down into the fabric corner creating a pocket.  Now bring up the fabric to the new side with a nice fold at the corner.  Take the excess fabric to the bottom and staple it at the bottom.  Repeat for the other corners.  When you have completed covering the ottoman with fabric, you now have the option of using a curved needle and upholstery thread to seam the two edges together or you may leave them.  However, with a lot of use with people sitting on the ottoman I recommend sewing the seam as it will be more durable.

Our next project we're thinking about doing is a side chair.  We'll have to video this and share.  DC give me a call if you need more details or have questions.  That may be easier.



Oct 29, 2012 09:38 AM #5
Show All Comments

What's the reason you're reporting this blog entry?

Are you sure you want to report this blog entry as spam?


Marie Fox

Lake Mary, Florida, Home Stager & RE Photographer
Ask me a question

Additional Information