DIY Footstool

For this month’s Power Tool Challenge, I made a DIY Footstool. Actually, I made two and they are so useful!

When we are at the lake, we love to relax on the deck in rocking chairs or on the dock in Adirondack chairs. My preferred way to relax is with my feet up, so these DIY footstools will get a lot of use on both our deck or dock.

DIY Wooden Footstool - Learn how to make your own. Get the plans at #summerpowertoolchallenge #woodworking

Instead of designing my own footstool, I followed these plans from Ana White.  This is the second time that I’ve followed woodworking plans, last month I followed these to make a DIY 2×4 Bench, and slowly but surely, I’m starting to understand woodworking lingo.

I’m thrilled with my DIY Footstools and look forward to using them all summer.

How to Make a Footstool

Making these two footstools was relatively easy and only took a few hours.

 Finishing them with stain and several coats of polyurethane took longer than the construction. 


(List is for one stool.)

Footstool Supplies

I made two footstools, so note that I have double the wood needed and four cup pulls.

Building the Footstool

1.  Square off the end of a 1 x 10 and cut a 16” piece to form the top of the footstool.

2.  The two end pieces are cut at 7 1/2” (edge to edge) with parallel 5 degree angles.

5 degree angle

Setting up a stop block jig ensures that each side piece will be 7 1/2”.  Note that the board is also marked at 7 1/2”

Sliding Compound Miter Saw Jig

After the first 7 1/2” piece was cut, flip the board to cut the other end at a 5 degree angle such that the edges have parallel 5 degree miters.

After cutting the top and bottom parallel 5 degree angles, the sides of the board are tapered, also at a 5 degree angle, from bottom to top (angles tapered so that the top is narrower than the bottom).  Note that the jig is now set to the width of the bottom edge for these tapered cuts.

5 degree angle for the sides

3.  Cut 2 – 13” pieces, also at a 5 degree angle (not parallel, but tapered to the top) for the side pieces.

4.  Notch the bottom of each side.  I measured in 2” on each side and three inches up and then connected the points with a pencil.  These lines were cut with the band saw.

Notches for the legs
Cutting notches with band saw

5.  Sand each piece.

Sand the pieces

6.  Connect the side pieces and end pieces.  These side pieces can either be attached vertically (w.r.t. the ground), or aligned with the edge.  I chose to align the sides with the tapered edge of the legs.  Start by marking points for screw holes 3/8” from the side and 1” down and 2 1/2” down – noting that there is a distinct outside and inside surface to these legs.  Countersink the screw holes on the outside of each side piece.

Drill holes to connect sides and ends

Apply glue to the end pieces and screw to the side pieces.

Glue and Screw
Screw the sides to the ends

7.  I wanted the screws to be hidden when I attached the top to the base, so I used my Kreg Jig to make 3/4” pocket holes that face upwards from the inside.

Kreg Jig Pocket Holes
pocket holes

8.  Center the base of the footstool on the bottom side of the top and mark with a pencil on the inside.  Apply glue around the pencil line.

Top of the board ready to screw on

Put the base on the top upside down and screw into place.

Screw top to base

The footstool is now complete other than staining and attaching the cup pull handles on the sides.

DIY Wooden Footstool - Learn how to make your own!

Staining the Footstool

Here the footstool has been stained and protected with polyurethane, ready to be used at the lake.

DIY Wooden Footstool - Get the plans to make your own.

The stools were stained in Dark Walnut by Minwax

After the stain dried, I sanded each stool, wiped the wood down with a tack cloth, and applied a coat of polyurethane.

After the polyurethane dried, I went over each with fine steel wool to make the finish super smooth and then applied a final coat of polyurethane. 

After the polyurethane dried, the cup handles were screwed into place.

How to Make a Wooden Footstool - Get the plans to make your own! -

Enjoying the Footstools

At the end of the day, we will pull our Adirondack chairs to the end of the dock, prop our feet up on our footstools, and watch the sun go down.

DIY Wooden Footstools with DIY Adirondack Chairs

The Adirondack chairs are another DIY project, you can see how we made them here.

This is one of the rockers that usually is on our deck, but since it folds, it’s easy to carry down to the dock.  Sitting in this rocker with my feet propped up is going to be pure heaven.

DIY Wooden Footstool

I’m really happy with this project and can’t wait to make something else to use at the lake.

DIY Wooden Footstool - Get the tutorial to make your own.

If you like this project, please pin it for others to discover.

DIY Wooden Footstool Tutorial - Learn how to make your own!

Summer Power Tool Project Ideas

Now it’s time to see what my friends made for this month’s Power Tool Challenge.

Summer Power Tool Projects from the Power Tool Team Challenge Girls - These are projects that you can make!

Click on the links below to visit each project.

Frozen Treat Stand by My Love To Create

Red White And Blue Cornhole Game by Create And Babble

Drying Rack From Old Crib rail by The Kim Six Fix

Chair Spindle Wooden Garden Caddy by Interior Frugalista

Star Clothes Drying Rack by A Piece Of Rainbow

Farmhouse Bench Building Plans by Refresh Restyle

Vegetable Gathering Basket by Designs By Studio C

DIY Standing Towel Rack Tutorial by H2OBungalow

Reclaimed Wood Bookcase by Confessions of A Serial DIY’er

DIY Footstool by Virginia Sweet Pea

DIY Hose Hanger by My Repurposed Life

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    1. Thanks, Wendi! I am hoping to enjoy many mornings and evenings with my feet up on those stools.


  1. I love your little footstools! I’m one that always likes to put my feet up when I rest, so of course this speaks to me.



    1. My mom and I were rocking in our rockers one day saying that we needed something to put our feet up on and that’s when the idea for this project was born.


  2. How adorable is that – his & her lakeside footstools! Ooooh, I could spend many hours relaxing with my feet up on your pier. Love the rustic look you gave them and the cup pull handles are perfect for function and looks. Nice job!

  3. Those are great! I love the handles on the side! They look so great on your dock. All those images just make me so relaxed just looking at them!

    1. Thanks, Jeanie! I hope that we’ve worn the finish off by the end of summer from propping our feet up on them.


    1. Thanks, Christy! We were at the lake for two nights earlier this week and I didn’t want to leave!


    1. Thank you, Bernice. I wasn’t sure about the stain at first but after applying the poly, I really like it.


  4. So nice, Paula! They look lovely with the chairs, too! (I wanna say something about your muscles in that one pic… but can’t figure out what to say without being awkward or embarrassing you, or me! See what I mean?! 😉🤪)

  5. I love the side handles and dark walnut stain. I’m choosing this as one of my features for the #littlecottagelinkparty next Monday. Have a great weekend!

  6. Pingback: Woodworking Plans Ottoman – Tedswoodworking Review
  7. I just don’t think it is possible to have too many footstools! They are so handy. Thanks for the how-to! Now I don’t need to buy anymore!

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