Of all of the memories I have of my Grandma throughout my childhood this step stool seems to be in every picture I have of her in my mind. She will always be sitting on it, by her kitchen stove, whether a fire was burning in it or not. I had a pretty cool Grandma, she had herself the very first Nintendo and she and I went through and beat the very first Zelda multiple times one summer when I was 11 years old. She hand drew maps of all of the dungeons – seriously though, how cool is that?! I went looking for those old maps years ago and could not find them but still think of them from time to time. This old step stool, if Grandma wasn’t sitting on it her kitchen, I was! It was my favorite spot and when Grandma passed and this became my home this stool was with me throughout the entire renovation. It was already very old and not in the best of shape and us using it – me standing on it while drywalling or running electrical or plumbing, did nothing but just make it more rickety. By the end of the renovation this poor old Cosco step stool was not safe to use anymore! So, I stashed it in the garage for a day when I knew I could bring it back to its former glory. This weekend I rolled up my sleeves and got to work!
You can see in the picture that the step stool was absolutely filthy so I brought it inside, set it on a towel by our kitchen sink and mixed water and vinegar in a bowl and got to scrubbing. Is that a big nail being used to keep the back left leg attached to the stool? Yes, yes it is. Once I got the entire stool scrubbed down I headed out to the barn for a bolt and nut to replace that old nail.
I removed the last two rubber feet that were still holding on and the (very old) black electrical tape that was being used as a foot. I went through every bolt and nut and tightened the entire stool down besides replacing two of them that were missing. Amazingly, the stool became sturdy again and was just as good as new except, of course, it really need some paint! I bought one can of Rustoleum black matte spray paint and one can of Rustoleum’s chrome spray paint and took my stool outside for painting. I painted the “steps” first with the black matte paint and then taped them off and painted the rest of the stool in chrome. That chrome spray paint is AMAZING! It’s like liquid aluminum foil!
The seat was in terrible shape, the rings you see there are from PVC primer where this stool had joined me running all of the drains throughout the house. It needed to be replaced and I couldn’t think of a better replacement then red vinyl! Inspecting the underside of the seat I saw four steel tabs that were bent over, straightening them out I was able to pry the seat right off!
I grabbed my glue gun and some scissors after seeing that the old seat cover had also just been glued down. I ripped the old cover off and replaced it with my new red vinyl and found myself in a predicament. Shoot! That’s a really ugly wrinkle! I did some searching online and tried getting the wrinkle out by drying it in our dryer for half an hour – that didn’t really work, it helped, but not good enough. My mother-in-law had bought us a little hand steamer for clothes and that worked! With the paint dry I brought the stool in, put on the new feet I bought for it and TADAH!
I’ve already used this stool several times in our kitchen to reach the top shelves of our ceiling-height cabinets! It is just wonderful! And the whole cost only came to $12! I love that it is back where it belongs, I literally set it down in the same place where it always was before, in my Grandma’s kitchen. Things are a little different then they were back when this was her place but, to me, it is still the same place. Sometimes, I swear, for a split second when I run up the front steps and through the same screen door that was there when I was kid, I’m literally 11 again and I almost expect to see her sitting right there on that stool waiting for me.