Simple Knock Down Stool Made From Plywood (flat Pack)




About: I am a freelance translator living in Japan. I like to create furniture and signs etc. using reclaimed wood. See my blog for photos of other projects, and a link to my 3D models on the 3DWarehouse. My "How t...
I was given a few 90 x 180 cm (3 x 6') sheets of slightly used plywood which I am in the process of repurposing.
Since I have use for a couple of extra stools occasionally, I recently drew this slotted (flat pack) stool in Sketchup.
I designed it so that two complete 48 cm tall stools will fit onto a 90 x 180 cm (3 x 6') piece of 12 mm (7/16") plywood.
It could easily be cut with a laser, or a CNC router (I cut it manually with a jig saw and a circular saw).
(Click on the [i] at the top left of photos to see an enlarged version.)

Materials used
- 90 x 180 x 1.2 cm piece of plywood (slightly larger than 3 x 6' and 7/16" thick)

Tools used
- Handheld circular saw
- Handheld jig saw
- Power drill (and 8 mm bit)
- Small orbital sander
  1. March 22, 2012 - as per request, I have added a PDF file of the cutout plans. Red outlines indicate the 3 parts that are necessary if you want to print and make templates. Note: slots are sized for 1.2 cm thick plywood (overall design is 180 x 90 cm).
  2. For those of you who have a CNC router, I have uploaded slightly modified version of this stool to
    You can cut it yourself, or have Ponoko do the production for you.

Step 1: Plywood Stool Plan Layout

I designed this stool so that two could be made from one piece of 90 x 180 x 1.2 cm plywood (they will fit onto a 4x8' with room to spare).
I have attached an EPS outline file to the first step, and it could be converted for use with a laser or CNC plotter.
*Note that the slots are made for 1.2 cm (7/16") plywood.

Step 2: Cutting Out the Pieces of the Stool

I used CorelDraw to output the outline in tiled format onto sheets of paper as I would be cutting the pieces by hand.
If you use paper templates, tape them down as any movement means the shape and measurements will be distorted.
I used a circular saw for straight edges, and a handheld jig saw for the curves.
For the slots on the seat piece, I drilled holes near the ends of each slot, then inserted the jig saw into the holes and cut them out.
After cutting out the stool pieces, I used an orbital sander to clean up the surfaces and edges.

Step 3: Assembling the Stool

The two wider leg pieces (front/back) slot into the narrower leg pieces (left/right) from above.
Since they are slightly angled outward (for better stability), it will require a bit of back-and-forth movement to get them to fit.
Next, all you have to do is pop the seat piece on, and you're done.

As an alternative to the slots on the seat piece, you could use a router and cut in halfway on the bottom side for a clean top side.
(Don't forget to remove the excess amount on the tabs at the top of the leg pieces if do this.)
I think I will try this method on the next one, and maybe paint it as well.

The last photo is a scale model I made from 3mm thick card stock to check the build before moving on to full size.



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    13 Discussions


    1 year ago

    Muchas gracias un placer amigo


    5 years ago

    Can u use this design on a larger scale? For a kitchen table or coffee table?


    7 years ago on Introduction

    for those of us that do not have a program to easily access an EPS file ... could you please post it in a different format to make printing out a template possible

    thank you in advance

    2 replies

    I have uploaded a printable PDF version of the cutout plans (above step 1). As in the attached sample image below, the design is flipped around, so if you can tile print it on a normal printer, and you want to make templates, just print out the area with the three parts in red.
    *Note that the slots are for 1.2 cm plywood.

    Below is a page on the Adobe site with information on printing tiled PDF files.
    Print documents with large page size on regular printer


    you are the man, the myth, the legend ... epic songs shall be composed in your honor

    in other words ... thanks :)


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Thats really cool! I love the simple slotting design. Pity I don't have a circular saw :( I'll just jigsaw my way to a crooked chair then ._.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Oh, I wouldn't use a router for a clean top. Part of the joy is seeing how the flat pieces fit together like a puzzle! But what did you do to secure the top to the legs? People will automatically grab the top to move the stool, and it shouldn't come off. Did you glue it?

    1 reply

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I've attached a closeup of the seat showing a hole and leg tab.
    The legs have a slight angle, so the tabs are wedged into the holes in the seat.
    If this was cut by laser or CNC router, the fit should be tight enough that the top piece is secure.