Hello friends! I hope you are all doing great! I am just giddy about this little project! Today I am going to show you how to build a DIY barstool using only 2x4s!
Technically speaking this is a counter stool because it’s 26 1/2″ tall. Barstools are supposed to be taller, but who cares, right? Call it what you will, it’s cute, and super cheap to build! How awesome is that??? I am a BIG fan of 2x4s. They are cheap and so sturdy! Did I mention they’re cheap? Yeah, I even splurged and bought the better quality studs for a whopping $3.40 a piece. I bought 4 boards and built 2 stools. TWO!
Here is a picture you can refer to for the dimensions of this piece
I will give you the materials list and the cut list, then I will break down the building steps for you. I have plenty of pictures. I like pictures better than words, so I hope you feel the same 🙂 If not, sorry about all the scrolling. As for plans, I didn’t have any. I just got creative and followed the same style as the farmhouse bench I built a while back.
Important: Use wood glue on every joint. Also, I recommend you read this entire tutorial before you begin.
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DIY Barstool Using only 2×4
Cut List- Remember, all 2x4s 🙂
- Seat 3 pieces at 12”
- Legs 4 pieces at 25” with ends beveled at 10 degrees. Ends are parallel.
- Large crossbars 2 pieces at 14 ¼”. Ends are mitered at 10 degrees. Ends are not parallel.
- Small crossbars 2 pieces at 4 ¼’’
I put the pieces together in the same order shown on the cut list above
Bevel vs miter cuts
The two pictures below demonstrate a bevel cut vs a miter cut. Scroll down for more instructions on how to make these cuts as you build this stool.
Step 1: Build the Seat
Using your Pocket Hole Jig drill pocket holes in the 3 pieces that make up the seat. and put them together with 2 1/2″ pocket screws.
The arrows point to the direction of the pocket holes. Try to drill your pocket holes 2-3 inches away from the ends. You will want to leave room to attach the legs later.
Put the three pieces together with 2 1/2″ pocket screws.
Step 2: Attach the legs to the seat
The cuts you make for the legs should be beveled at 10 degrees. Here’s a little trick I use to make the angled cuts. For a beveled angle you will set the 10 degrees on the top end of your miter saw, right behind the blade, usually. This will tilt your blade to the left slightly.
Then I make the first cut on a piece that is slightly longer than the piece I need as you see below, without measuring.
Then I flip the board upside down and over to the left and measure from there and mark my other end (see below). For the legs, I measured 25″ from the long point and cut again. That will give you parallel 10 degree bevels. Now do this 4 times. Sorry. Four legs 🙂 Be precise on these cuts. Wobbly legs aren’t cool 🙁
Now you can drill pocket holes on one end of the legs. Make sure and drill them on the longer side of the bevel. This is the side that will attach to the seat.
Now you are ready to attach these to the seat using 2 1/2″ pocket screws. Make sure you use wood glue on the seam. Attach them flush to the outside of the seat.
Step 3: Attach the large crossbars
The 2 crossbars are mitered at 10 degrees. The mitered angle on the saw is set on the base of the saw below the blade. The bevel angle you set before should be back at “0” and your miter angle at 10 degrees. This will cause the base of your miter saw to slide to one side (I always set it to the left) but your blade will be straight.
I use the same technique I explained above. Choose a board that is larger than the length you need, cut one side first, then flip the board upside down and over to the right this time (for a non parallel cut), measure form the long point, and cut the other side.
Now you are ready to drill pocket holes on both ends and attach the crossbars to the legs. I attached them 5 inches from the bottom of the legs and flush with the outside of the legs.
Step 4: Attach the small crossbars
These two pieces were an afterthought. I thought the stool looked unfinished without them. Adding them made the legs look more evenly parallel too. I cut them, drilled two pocket holes in opposite directions, then attached them with 2 1/2″ pocket screws.
And you’re done!
Step 5: Build another one (or more if you want!) and admire your work 🙂
And here’s a couple of pics of the barstools all finished! I decided to go with white.
Here is one last picture of this beauty as a plant stand! So versatile.
What do you all think??? Is this a project you might be willing to tackle? I would be happy to answer any questions! If you like this tutorial, share it, tweet it, pin it, and when you have time, build it!!
If you like this project be sure and check out our other wood projects!