One thing you will know if you have kids is that they are tiny and cannot reach a lot of things. Sometimes that is a very good thing but when you want them to wash their hands in a sink, not so much. Our kids decided to use our toilet as a stool (their Ikea plastic one was not tall enough) and they were making the seat move to one side. Not very good for our toilet seat. So while I am doing a face-lift for the bathroom, why not make it more function able for the kids? How about building a simple stool? Maybe something like this…
What do you think? And guess what, it cost me nothing because I used scrap pieces of wood I had on hand. But that does not mean I cannot show you how to make your own.
SIDE NOTE: I used a scrap 8″ board I had on hand but I wish it was a little bigger (to make it have a larger base also sturdier), so this tutorial will be using a 10″ board. But you could use an 8″.
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FIND the list of TOOLS we use here.
2 – 1″x10″x10.75″ (SIDES)
2 – 1″x10″x12″ (BOTTOM & TOP STEPS)
4 – 1″x2″x9.75″ (STEP TRIM)
2 – 1″x2″x7.25″ (BOTTOM STEP TRIM)
To make things easier, I made a diagram to show you all the pieces after they are cut plus where to place the Kreg Jig pockets.
First I cut the boards to the cut list. Then I started with the side pieces. These pieces are cut to the right height (9.25″x10.75″), they just need to be cut to an “L” shape. To do this, I marked the boards 5.25 inches from the top to bottom and 5.25 inches from the side. I connected the marks with lines to form a square on one corner. I did this for the other side piece as well.
After marking both side pieces, I cut out the marked square. To do this I used my miter saw, only cutting to the end of each line. Then turning the board over to cut again. I then broke the rectangle away and sanded down the broken part. This is when a jig saw would be useful! I did this for both side pieces.
Next I worked on the step bottom, this will look like a “T” when finished cutting. So taking the 12″x9.25″ board, I marked a rectangle into one corner. The rectangle will be 1.25″x5.25″. Then I marked another rectangle in the corner on the same 12 inch side (1.25″x5.25″). After marking I used the same cutting method I used to create the side pieces on this bottom step. After I was left with this.
Now for the top step (this one is the easy one!). Mark a line 5.75″ into the 9.25″ side. Then cut a long that line, my saw in not long enough to cut straight through, so I just turn the wood around to finish to cut (turned so uncut side will be against the blade). I was now left with a 5.75″x12″ board.
At this point all my wood was cut to the diagram. Now I created pockets to secure the wood together using the diagram I provided, place a pocket where the “*” are on the inside of the wood. There will be 24 in total.
2- on the top of the side pieces
4- on the 9.75″ trim pieces (one on each 2″ side and 2 for the length)
2- on the 7.25″ trim pieces (a long the length)
Remember the pockets will all be on the inside of the stool frame.
I then processed by sanding all the wood with #220 grit sandpaper then wiped all the wood with a damp cloth after to clean the surface. Before I start I want to let you know that there are not very many pictures, sorry!
Now I started to put the stool together. To do this, I started by attaching two for the 9.75″ trim pieces to the top side pieces, using the side pockets in the trim pieces (the 2″ side will be facing out).
TIP: Make sure your other pockets are facing the right way to attach the top step. We placed these trim pieces 1/4″ inset from the front edge of the side piece. This is the frame for your top step.
Then I added the top step board to this frame. I placed the top step board on a flat surface then placed the frame on top of the board. There should be a 1/4″ over hang on all sides, then I attached the board to the frame with the screws (there will be 8).
Now for the bottom step. I took one of the 9.75″ trim pieces and attached it to the middle of the side pieces (using the side pockets on the trim pieces). The trim piece will be be attached flush with the square cut out to make the “L”. Again I placed this trim pieces 1/4″ away from the from edge of the side pieces. TIP: Make sure the other pockets are facing the right way at attach the bottom step.
Once this pieces were attached, I placed the bottom step onto the frame. Making sure the step was flush with the side board, I then marked where the bottom of the step hit the side board. I did this for both sides. This line is where you will place the other trim pieces. I then removed the step and attached the last 9.75″ trim piece. to do this, I placed the trim piece 1/4″ away from the edge of the side board but right along the marked line. TIP: Make sure the pocket are facing the right way.
I then attached the 7.25″ trim pieces between the last two trim pieces. To attach them, I placed them along the marked line but only screwed them into the side board without using a pocket (used two screws per side). The pockets will be used to attach the bottom step so make sure they are facing the right way.
After all the frame pieces are attached, I then attached the bottom step using the pockets (there will be 8). I placed the one side of the step onto a table to help attach the board.
Now I wiped the wood again with a damp cloth. Right after, I applied a coat of stain to the wood, I used Provincial by Minwax. Once the coat of stain had dried, I applied two coats of polycrylic to protect the wood from getting water damage.
After the polycrylic dried the stool was complete!
What do you think? My kids are loving that they can now reach the sink and so do I!