Did you know that it’s some sort of incredible statistic like 45% of Melbourne households have a Billy bookcase from Ikea? Ok, maybe I made that up. Or maybe it’s an urban myth. But I heard it somewhere and think it is totally believable. Same goes with those Expedit units, those things are everywhere. Another Ikea piece common to a lot of households is the Bekvam stool (except I can’t do those little dot things above the ‘a’).
Our Bekvam came to live with us when I began nannying a little boy in our tiny cottage. All of a sudden there was a very small person inhabiting our very small space. The very small person needed somewhere to sit, stand and generally dictate from, as three year old are likely to. Monty and I would spend most of our days baking, and the stool became very much ‘Monty’s stool’. He would run and grab it after dumping his kinder bag at the front door, perch up on it on the other side of the kitchen bench from me and ask “What will we make today, Nemma?” Bless.
Bekvam was much loved by us over the years, he has a handy hole for carrying, is just the right height and looks very Scandinavian-chic. But six years after coming to live with us poor old Bekvam was looking a little unloved. Monty has grown up and forgotten him, he lived in storage whilst we traveled last year (the stool, not Monty!) and was all scuffed up and disheveled. After much
thought Pinterest research, I saw that much could be done to revamp Bekvam – people go nuts for it! But I wanted something a bit Country Style-esque. Something a bit Martha’s-house-in-the-Hamptons meets Escape to the Country (hands up who else freaking loves that show?!)
With a quick clean off, wipe down, light sand and lick of paint, Bekvam was feeling a million bucks. Let’s not talk about the indecision on the correct shade of green to use, the freak out about it being too pastel and not country-sage enough, the trip back to the hardware store which is an hours drive away, the purchasing of more paint, the hiding of newly bought paint from the husband, the re-sanding, the re-painting, the re-drying. No, we won’t talk of that. And still it looks waaay lighter in the photos than it is in real life. The original paint colour I used would have looked white!
A painted stool is one thing – that’s so easy and yawn-worthy. I saw this cool stuff in Spotlight literally years ago and grabbed it, with no idea of what I would use it for. It’s a waterproof, non-slip table cloth rubber type thing. It comes on a little roll in the upholstery and curtains section and there’s lots of pretty doily-like patterns, I liked this circular one and had an ‘aha’ moment when I looked at sad Bekvam, then rifled through craft supplies I needed to use. Lightbulb I tells ya.
I flipped Bekvam upside down and traced out the shape of his top, then cut out the white rubber stuff to match, just literally using the stool as my template on a cutting mat with my trusty stanley knife. I measured the second step carefully and cut out a shape to match. The little hole on top was a bit fiddly to cut out, it would be better if you have a smaller and more accurate exacto knife.
I used a spray adhesive to stick it on to the steps, you could also use a clear drying PVA glue painted on lightly as it would just dry as a bit of a glossy finish, I just happened to have this spray adhesive in my craft stash. I sprayed the steps liberally, then gently positioned the rubber-lace, starting in the middle point and making my way outwards. Sometimes it didn’t want to stick down (especially around the hand-hole and the edges) so I plonked some heavy books and cans on the steps to stick it down. I was thinking later that a pretty oilcloth or laminated cotton would work well too…
Now Bekvam struts about the farmhouse like the day he was born, feeling very fresh, re-invigorated and ready to go to work helping the vertically challenged (of which there is one in this household). We hope to have many more happy years using Bekvam in his new sage green and white rubber-lace glory.