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Make a Footstool

Add comfort and style to your decor with a custom footstool. Building the stool is so easy anyone can do it. All you need are a few common tools, a couple of hours of free time and a little creativity. After your project is completed, you can sit back, put your feet up and relax. Lowe's is happy to provide this information as a service to you.

Tools & Materials


  • Circular saw

  • Drill/driver

  • Tape measure

  • Stain wiping rag

  • Gloves

  • Paintbrush

  • Dust mask

  • Goggles

  • Hearing protection


  • Pre-glued panel

  • Four legs with bolts built-in

  • Four straight top plates

  • Stain

  • Varnish or polyurethane

  • Sandpaper

Pre-glued Top Option

Using a pre-glued panel is the quickest and easiest way to make your footstool top. After you purchase the pre-glued panel all you need is a circular saw to cut the top to length and width. This is the option we chose for our footstool, the list above reflects the tools and materials needed to make a top using this option.

Glued Top Option

If you prefer to create the top from scratch, you can make it from 1x material. This is an excellent option if you want a clear-coated, solid footstool. You can use anything from 1x4 to 1x12 boards for the top. Cut your boards at least 2" longer than the final length you want for the tabletop and edge-glue them together. The glue-up's width should be at least 1" wider than the intended width of the top.

Plywood or Medium Density Fibreboard (MDF) Top Option

You can also use 3/4" plywood or MDF for your top. If you want the look of oak or birch without gluing the top, you can cut a piece of oak or birch faced plywood to the size you need for the top. Cover the raw edges of the plywood with iron-on edge banding and your top is ready. If you choose 3/4" MDF, cut it to the size you need then you can either paint or laminate the top.

Make the Footstool

The dimensions of your footstool depend on the chair it accompanies. Size your footstool to your own comfort.

Top plates make attaching the legs easy.

  • 1. Make the top from the material of your choice above. Cut the top to size.

  • 2. Mark the underside of the top for the leg top plate locations. As a rule of thumb, the top plates should be located 1/2" to 1 1/2" in from the edges of the top.

  • 3. Screw the leg top plates to the underside of the top as marked.

  • 4. Screw the leg into the top of the bracket.

  • 5. Sand the entire footstool.

  • 6. Paint, clear-coat or stain the entire piece.

Construction Notes

  • If you're going to laminate the top, finish the legs and laminate the top before connecting the legs to the top.

  • If you use a pre-glued panel, a panel you glue yourself or 3/4" MDF that you intend to paint, you can use a router and a bottom piloted bit to add a decorative edge to the top.

  • If you want a more modern look, add apron pieces between the legs. Cut pieces of 1x4 to fit between the legs. Cut 3/4"x3/4" strips 1" shorter than each apron piece. Hold the apron piece in place and use 1 1/4" screws to secure the strips to the aprons and the underside of the top.

Tools, products, materials, techniques, building codes and local regulations change; therefore, Lowe's assumes no liability for omissions, errors or the outcome of any project. The reader must always exercise reasonable caution, follow current codes and regulations that may apply, and is urged to consult with a licensed professional if in doubt about any procedures. Please visit our terms of use.

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