How to Make Plans for a Wooden Stool

Written by jonah morrissey
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How to Make Plans for a Wooden Stool
Wooden stools (stools and tables image by Michelle Marsan from

Wooden stools are commonly used in taverns, pubs, kitchen islands and bars. They provide a place to sit for conversation and informal dining. Although wooden stools can be purchased, they can often be made for less in the home workshop. A good place to start before you build a stool is to make plans. Plans for custom wooden stools can be made with some basic tools and knowledge as well as some creative inspiration. Determine the function of the stool first and then think about style options. A successful stool design will meet a functional need and also fit into the overall design of a space.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Note pad
  • Graph paper
  • Ruler
  • Protractor
  • Compass
  • Eraser

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    How to Make Plans for a Wooden Stool

  1. 1

    Determine the function of the stool and the space it will be used in. You will not be able to start your plans until you know how the stool will be used. Think about whether it will be used for a kitchen island, tall dining table, outdoor barbecue table or any other place you might use a stool. Each place may require a different design.

  2. 2

    Measure the surface (table, etc) where the stool will be used for seating with a tape measure. Mark down the measurements. Critical measurements include the table height and the overall space where the stool will be positioned.

  3. 3

    Draw the basic shape of the stool on a sheet of graph paper. Use a pencil and a ruler to make a neat line drawing. To make curved lines and to determine angles, use a protractor. Make any circular lines in the drawing with a compass. Erase any changes or stray pencil lines.

  4. 4

    Mark the measurements of the stool on the drawing. Refer to the measurements you noted earlier. Consider the height of the table or bar it will be used with and the overall space that is available for the stool within the room. Draw a light line from the part of the drawing and mark the measurement. This will allow you to see how each part will go together to form the overall stool.

  5. 5

    Make a list of all the parts on the note pad. Note the number of each part that you will need. This is called a cut sheet and will tell the person making the stool what and how many of each part to make.

  6. 6

    Select a building material for the stool. Consider where the stool will be used. Based on this consideration, you can make an informed choice in the materials that you would like to use and the type of finish. Outdoor stools must be made out of treated or rot resistant wood such as cedar. Indoor stools often match or accent the woodwork of the room. It is a matter of personal preference. Mark the material selection on the note pad and graph paper.

Tips and warnings

  • Make several designs so that you have a few choices to decide from before making your stool.
  • Always build a prototype of a design before giving it to others to build. There may be unknown factors that you will not realise until a prototype is made.

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