Child’s Step Stool

This project is rated: DIFFICULT

Sometimes, children are too short to reach: the wash basin, a light switch, etc. A small step stool is convenient for them to use.

Materials needed:
  • Wood – 1″ by 6″ board at least 74 inches long
  • Computer paper for template
  • Screws
  • 6-penny finishing nails
  • Jigsaw and saw
  • Drill with drill bits
  • Wood putty
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint or Stain
Step Stool

Project Instructions

  1. From an 8 foot long 1″ by 6″ board, cut two pieces that are 15″ long and cut four pieces that are 11″ long. The 15″ pieces will be the steps, and the other pieces will be the supports for the steps.

  2. Print the template, top pattern image at right, needed for shaping the supporting pieces. This template is only a partial template which you will use for the next few project steps.
  3. Position the template on one end of an 11″ piece of lumber; trace; then position the template on the other end ; trace.
    The resulting marks on the piece should look like the the illustration to the right.
  4. Repeat the above step on a second 11″ piece.
  5. Using a jigsaw, cut away the opening at the bottom edge of each piece.
  6. On another 11″ piece, position the template as shown at right, and trace.

  7. Repeat the above step on a second 11″ piece.
  8. Using a jigsaw, cut away the opening at the bottom edge of each piece.
  9. On the 15″ pieces (these are the steps), round each edge and each corner.
  10. Sand all pieces as needed.

You are now ready for assembling.

Assembly Instructions

  1. The sides of the step stool are each made from a horizontal piece and a vertical piece. Position the two pieces for each side as shown in the image at right and fasten them together with two screws, as shown.

  2. The two steps can be fastened to the uprights with nails. First, drill clearance holes for 6 penny finishing nails in the step as shown in the illustration at right.
  3. Drive 6 penny finishing nails into the drilled holes and into the upright pieces. Set the nail heads below the surface of the step and fill the holes with wood filler. When the wood filler is dry, sand the filled holes.
  4. You should also add some supports to keep the step stool from twisting sideways. Add wooden corner braces under the top step (as was done on the prototype), or use metal angle braces, or you could add a board under the top step from one side to the other side.
  5. Once  assembled, you can paint the step stool any color that you desire. Alternatively, you could stain your steps, but that will depend on the quality of wood you used.

Step Stool side template
Step Stool side pattern 2
Step Stool side pattern 1
Step Stool design
Step Stool tread nail placement

I hope your child gets as much use from these steps as our children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and others have gotten from the ones I have made.

Step Stool
Child using Step Stool