Farmhouse Style Step Stool

DIY Wooden Step Stool for a High Bed

As part of our guestroom makeover for the girls, we bought a new rod iron bed frame from Ikea. Unfortunately, when we set the bed frame up with the existing almost new mattress we were startled at how high the bed was.

The new style of mattress is ultra comfortable but comes with both a 16-inch deep box spring and a 16-inch deep mattress.  I like how it looks on the new bed frame, but it may be awkward for the little ones or some of our other guests to get in and out of.  Hubs built me this little step up as a solution.

Showing an easy to make diy wooden step stool project.  Easy wood project, wood project, wood stool plans



It takes very little material to make this little step stool.  If lucky you could make one from your stash, but if you need to purchase the wood here is the supply list.

1 – 1″ by 8″ board, 8 feet long

1 – piece of 1″ by 2″ board, 30 inches long.

White and grey paint

Cutting the Lumber

Cut the 1″ by 8″ board into:

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2 pieces -17.5 ” long

2 pieces – 12″ long

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2 pieces 20.5 ” long

2 pieces 6″ long



Cut the 1″ by 2″ board into:

2 pieces 14 1/4 inches long

The wood pieces will look similar to this photo.  The 1 by 2 ” board was an afterthought to add strength so it’s not shown in this picture.

Lumber cut into construction lengths for a DIY Wooden Step Stool project.   Easy wood project, wood project, wood stool plans



Next build two frames for the stair risers.

For the first frame nail together two 12″ pieces (for the depth of the bottom step) with one 17″ piece. This will form the bottom stair.

The frame for the bottom stair in a DIY Wooden Step Stool for a high bed.   Easy wood project, wood project, wood stool plans

For the second frame nail together two 6″ pieces with one 17″ piece.  This will become the top stair.aaaaaaaaaa

Once the two separate step frames are built, place the smaller frame on top of the larger frame. Glue and nail into place.


Two steps for  a DIY wooden step stool placed one on top of the other.  Easy wood project, wood project, wood stool plans


Once the two stair boxes are nailed together, add the two 20″ pieces across the top to form the treads.   Make sure they are square and even with each other.  One sure they stairs are lined up correctly glue and nail them into place.

After Hubs had built it to this point he didn’t think it was strong enough for adults to use. We occasionally have adult guests who stay in this room that have mobility issues so adding extra reinforcement will make the step stool useful for them as well.

For extra reinforcement add two 1 by 2 pieces, about 14 1/4 inches long to the back of the step.  Measure to make sure the pieces fit into your project before cutting.  In the photo you can see them lined up inside the back of the step stool.


Reinforcement braces for inside a DIY wooden step stool.  Easy wood project, wood project, wood stool plans


Finishing the Step Stool

To finish the step up the way I did, you will need:


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Small amount of white stain or paint.

Small amount of grey paint or stain

220 and 120 sandpaper


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Mod Podge


[/wc_row] a little bit of stain or paint, a graphic and mod podge.

Make sure to sand the stairs very well, especially on the cut edges.   First with 120 and then 220 grit sandpaper.

To follow the example, stain the step risers white and paint the treads grey.  Using white stain allows the texture of the wood to show through.  The step stool received three coats of stain and only two coats of the grey paint.  Letting it dry very well between coats.



Apply the Graphics

I went to the Graphics Fairy webpage and chose a grain graphic.  There are all kinds of wonderful child-focused graphics available as well, but this room needs to be at least somewhat adult appropriate I decided on a  general farmhouse vintage graphic.

Size the graphic to be 4 inches high, and flip it horizontally so your letters print backward for transferring.  It is recommended to print the graphic out on a laser printer. At Staples its only 10 cents a copy when you do it yourself. I have read that you can print it out using an inkjet printer but  I stuck with the approved laser printer method.

Measure out the center of the stair fronts and make some tiny pencil marks, double measure to be sure of center.

Add a liberal, even as possible, coating of mod podge to the ink side of the printed graphic. Place it using the center markings.

Carefully use a flat surface to remove any excess mod podge.  (I have an old points shopping card I use for this)

Set aside for 24 hours, no peeking.   Every tutorial I have read for mod podge transferring says to please just leave the graphic to dry.  I was tempted to peek, but not enough to risk smearing the graphic.

When the graphic is set, use a sponge and saturate the paper with water. Once saturated cautiously rub off the white paper and your graphic will appear.    The picture below shows the before on the top stair and the after on the lower stair.   Mod podge really does do a great job of transferring on to wood.

Before and After of a Mod Podge method for transferring graphics to wood.   Easy wood project, wood project, wood stool plans


Seal your work with a matte varathane.  Let dry for 24 hours..

This guest room for the girl’s is coming together, we still need to a window treatment and find or make some little farmhouse decor items.

Let us know what you think of our project.


Easy to Make Wood Step Stool, diy woodworking project.  Easy wood project, wood project, wood stool plans



DIY, Crafts, Home Decor


  1. Love it…great tutorial!
    Thanks so much for sharing at AMAZE ME MONDAY!

  2. LeannaForsythe says:

    Thank you Mary. They can climb instead of Grama lift and carry.


  3. That bed is gorgeous Leanne and the little step stool is the perfect addition to the bedroom. Not only is it pretty but it is also very functional. It kind of reminds me of the princess and the pea, where she had to climb up on the mattresses.

  4. Oh Leanna, your guest room is gorgeous and the step stool is just perfect. Love the graphic you added.

    1. LeannaForsythe says:

      Hi Michelle: A labour of love for the munchkins. Thank you for taking the time to comment.


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