How to Make an Ottoman – Vintage Milk Crate Turned into Unique Ottoman!

I researched many ideas on how to make an ottoman.  But, it was my husband who came up with not only a fabulous idea, but a really cheap rustic furniture idea!

We were in the process of giving our living room a makeover.  So, I drug him into an antique store in hopes of finding some unique and eclectic accessories.  He spotted an old milk crate, and a light bulb came on.

Want to Know How to Make an Ottoman?

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

Coming Up With Something Unique

We were on a pretty tight budget for our living room. So, we really wanted some unique living room decor ideas that fit into our budget.

Sometimes finding something really unique, means stepping back and seeing that object in a different light.  “What else could I use that for?

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

We (okay, he) found this amazing vintage milk crate for $25, and thought it would make a great ottoman.  Our living room isn’t huge, so a large ottoman was not going to fit the bill.

A Little Bit of Carpentry

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

The first thing we did was cut a piece of plywood to fit the top of the milk crate. (again, there was not a we, there was a he)

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

This particular milk crate had little feet on the bottom.

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

My husband cut out notches though a third of the plywood so that the board fit snugly on top.

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

Next, I cut a piece of  2″ foam to fit the top of the plywood board.  You can find foam at any craft or sewing store.

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

Now, the fun part; adding your decor fabric.  I chose a heavy weight fabric for durability. Our home is full of kids, dogs, and chaos.

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

Break out the staple gun!

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

When beginning to upholster the board, staple one staple in the middle of each side.  Flip the board over and make sure the fabric is straight and even.  Then begin stapling the rest of the fabric, keeping the tautness of the fabric even all the way around.

How to make an ottoman from Jennifer

When the fabric is a heavy weight fabric, the corners can be tricky! Carefully, snip off extra fabric to eliminate bulk,  then staple to the board. Once you are finished stapling, run a hot iron over the top and sides of the fabric.

Here is my video on “How to Make an Ottoman”.

I hope you enjoyed how to make an ottoman from an old milk crate, it truly is one of my favorite DIY projects.  And, if you are looking for cheap living room furniture, this little ottoman fits anybody’s budget!  Search for something unique to use, and have fun with it!


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Miss Mustard Seed

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  1. What a great idea! I have an old beer crate with the name painted on the sides, it will be perfect!! Thank you so much!! VBg

  2. Found your post on Pinterest! This turned out so cute! I wonder where I would find a milk crate?? Would the process be similar with any type of wooden box?

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