Four Dollar Stackable Children’s Chairs

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Dimensions: 
Dimensions are shown above.
Dimensions: 

2 – 1x3s, 8′ long (Furring strips were used for my chair, about $1.50 each)
1 – 1×2, 8′ long (furring strips again, $1 a stick)
1 1/4″ screws
2″ screws OR 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws for pocket holes
wood glue
finishing supplies

Tools: 
measuring tape
square
pencil
safety glasses
hearing protection
drill
circular saw
sander
level
countersink drill bit
Cut List: 

3 – 1×3 @ 11″ (Front and Side Aprons)
2 – 1×3 @ 11 3/4″ (Side Supports)
2 – 1×2 @ 13 1/4″ (Front Legs)
8 – 1×3 @ 12 1/2″ (Seat Slats and Back Slats)
2 – 1×2 @ 26″ (Back Legs)

Skill Level: 
Estimated Cost: 
Style: 

Step 1

Side Supports

Predrill holes and screw the side supports to the front aprons. I built mine with 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws, but you could also use 2″ screws. Use glue.

Step 2

Front Legs

Now just screw the legs to the front apron and supports. Use 1 1/4″ screws to screw into the side supports.

Summary: 

Stackable economical lightweight children's chairs.

Step 3

Side Aprons

Now simply add the side aprons with glue and 1 1/4″ screws.

Step 4

Back Apron

Back apron is the same length as the seat slats. Just attach the back apron with 2″ screws and glue.

Step 5

Back Legs

Simply screw the back legs to the back of the chair, on the outsides, as shown above. Use 2″ screws and glue. Make sure the chair back legs are square with the chair seat.

Step 6

Back Slats

Predrill and attach the back slats to the back legs. I spaced mine 1 1/2″ apart. For a different look, you can cut an arch shape out or use three 1x2s for back slats.

Step 7

Seat Slats

Predrill two holes in both ends of each seat slat. Then screw the seat slats to the chair frame, with 1/8″ gap (evenly spaced between all seat slats) between seat slats. Use glue.

Now that I've designed quite a few adult chairs (for example, this squared chair, plans here), thought I would take some time to work on a childrens design.  Specifically, one that met these requirements:

1.  Under $5 a chair

2. Stackable

3.  Super easy to build

4. Lightweight enough for my 18 month old niece to carry

5. But still sturdy enough for me to sit on.

And after a couple of prototypes and some redesigning in the garage, I think we've found our winner.

And yes, they do stack.  Not sure exactly at what point the chairs would tip forward, but at least four high would work.

And because we went with a slatted seat, this chair would also work well outdoors if finished appropriately.

Comments

ABSOLUTELY!!!!! BEAUTIFUL!!!!! I am so making these for my niece......they are amazing.

I love these, and you cant beat the price !!! Thankyou for taking the time to create and post these plans it gives us not so handy moms the confidance to make something for our children and homes

LOVE this! I was going to go today to get a newspaper to get a 40% off coupon to go to michaels and buy a chair to go with the table I built for my toddler last week. Now I can build a chair at a fraction of the cost!

Thanks so much! I bought a huge 3 seater lego table for my son at a garage sale and have not been wanting to spend $15 a chair for it. I know ikea had plastic chairs for $8, but it's two hours from my house and I didn't like the colors (and I'm not a fan of plastic furniture). So glad that he can finally have chairs for his table at an affordable price! Thanks!

great plans. I was just thinking about a homemade lego table for my son for Christmas and these chairs would be great! Any plans for a table to go with them?

I LOVE these!!! I'm adding them to my ever-growing list of Ana White design projects! My 2-year old is definitely getting these for Christmas. Thank you! :)

I'm not sure that only using screws to hold the back to the seat is good enough. Eventually the seat will give and someone will get hurt.Pretty looking though.

Dang, I've still got to get my modern bookshelf sanded & painted, and the modern desk built & painted (pieces are all cut out) before I make these for my kids...I better get a move-on!!!

I think these will be my first build. I have a bunch of other plans that I would like to try, but I think these would be a good jumping off point. Plus I can knock out some Christmas presents while I'm at it! Yay!

So cute! Is there a plan for a doll chair like that? Also, I thought I saw a plan for a doll bed for the American Girl dolls. Can you tell me where that is?

Ana, I'm going to try to build these for my son's birthday. One question... do you predrill with the countersink bits for every step or just when your instructions say predrill? This will be my first hand at countersinking and my first real project of yours (I did the pallet shelf but that seemed to easy to count;). I want to get it right.

Anytime you are going to use a screw you want to countersink the hole first. This allows the screws to go below surface and not stick out above the surface.

I started this tonight. Cutting went fast. This was the first time using the kreg. I am very disappointed, it was hard to keep clamped and the drill bit kept comming out of the drill. Hoping to make several for Christmas gifts but this is starting to look more like firewood. : ( Anyone else have problems with the kreg? I am using the small one.

This is the project that inspired me. I am using this as my basis for an article on my eco blog. www.greenertoday.blog.ca . You are doing more than you know for women. On top of inspiring them to take on projects themselves, you are also giving them an affordable, healthier alternative to cheap plastic sets that off gas in our homes and are bad for our children and families. Finishing items yourself allows you to select low VOC paint. You are a green inspiration too, and you may not even realize. Saving money, saving the planet. I like what you are doing here Ana.

I just built this chair, and it was not quite as easy as the table! getting things clamped to be square while getting the back legs on wasnt quite as simple as i had hoped ;) but they are sturdy, and they will look pretty nice once i fill all the holes and paint! I was able to get all the pieces while my daughter napped :)- that's how quickly it went.

I was wondering what sort of age-range these would be for. I have a 2½ year old and a 7½ year old. I've been looking for the perfect wooden table and chair set for them for what seems like forever now. These looks super cute and easy, but would they be suitable of an older child as well as a toddler?

Nicky, my seven year old niece sits at them (and I do too) but I would say seven is at the upper age limit. Perfect for a toddler though. My 1 1/2 year old niece carries hers around :)

Ana, I think I stumbled upon your site when blog hopping play kitchens. Totally doing a kitchen for my daughter's second birthday. However, her first birthday hasn't passed yet and I love these chairs. I know table/chair sets are $100 and look cheap!

do you have a table tutorial to go along with these chairs??

thank you - love love love your plans and totally book marking everything for later!

One of my daughter's broke her $17 chair similar to this over a year ago. She has been asking for a new one ever since, but we just never found one cheap enough that was the size we needed. I found your plans last night and bought the wood today. Exactly $4 at Home Depot if you don't count the jigsaw I threw in, lol. I was tired of using the circular saw and being intimidated by it.

Just built this chair, my first building project ever! I'm 21 weeks pregnant and have a 3 year old boy. I've been reading your site for a while now and my son peered over my shoulder, then asked me sweetly to make this chair in blue for him. All I have left is to sand and paint the chair, but it already looks wonderful.

Thanks so much for sharing your story and inspiring others to build! I have a few tears in my eyes (although, the pregnancy hormones may have a little to do with that) and am so proud that I made a chair for my son. My grandpa loved woodworking and he would be so proud of me if he were alive today. After this one's painted, I'll be working on a pink one for the little baby girl that will make her appearance around August.

It does feel so great to build something with your own two hands, doesn't it.  I've often felt the same way about our building adventures (the tears - and I don't even have the pregnancy to blame it on :-) )  I had grandparents and uncles that were really into woodworking and it does bring a little something extra to the piece when you can think back on the nostalgia - sort of like filling those shoes that you loved so much.  

Congrats on the new baby, the new build and many more builds to come! Keep up the good work and don't forget to share those pictures!!!  Hugs!

I think for anyone going to build these chairs or anything out of 1x2 and 1x3 material they should buy the higher grade lumber than the cheap stuff. You can see from the photos that the wood is likely to warp or be warped by the time you get them together. Using kiln dried lumber will mitigate this to a significant degree and the chairs will still be both affordable and hand made by you.

BTW, the Kreg jig is great. I can't wait to use it on more of my projects around the home

I am making a set of four of these doll sized for some 18" AG dolls.

The over all dimensions are going to be 14 3/4" H (back), 8" H (seat) X 8 1/2" W X 7" D.

The main change for this is using 1 x 4 for the slats on the top of the seat (with no gap). The back slats and apron will still be out of the 1 x 3. The number of "Seat Slats and Back Slats" drops from 8 to 3. The 1 x 4 is new to the cut list for the seat.

Cut List:
3 - 1×3 @ 7" (Front and Side Aprons)
2 - 1×3 @ 7 3/4" (Side Supports)
2 - 1×2 @ 7 1/4" (Front Legs)
3 - 1×3 @ 8 1/2" (Back Slats and Back Apron)
2 - 1×4 @ 8 1/2" (Seat Slats) - NEW
2 - 1×2 @ 14" (Back Legs)

I finished assembling the four chairs for 18" dolls last night but made them smaller than my original post stated. The over all dimensions are now 12" H (back), 5 1/2" H (seat) X 6" W X 6 1/2" D

Cut List:
2 - 1×2 @ 4 1/4" (Side Aprons)
2 - 1×2 @ 5" (Side Supports)
3 - 1×2 @ 4 1/2" (Front Legs and Front Apron)
7 - 1×2 @ 6" (4 Seat Slats, 2 Back Slats and Back Apron)
2 - 1×2 @ 12" (Back Legs)

I also made a doll sized version of the table. Once Christmas is over, I will post them on the brag boards. I don't want any picture evidence around before the big reveal...

I am new here and I love it! I have made a picnic table from this site so far and this will be my next project! I am double teaming these chairs with my grandpa. I will be building and he will be painting. =]

I was wondering where to do the pocket holes on the aprons in order to avoid hitting the pocket holes on the supports. There is no guide for this and it seems like they would hit one another. I am a beginner so I may be looking at it wrong. Any advice would be great!! Thanks:)

I'm confused about where your placement of screws and pre drilled holes go? And also, when you predrill holes are you always using the kreg jig because we are and some of our screws are splitting the wood. I'm confused about what the seat slats are screwed into. Please help! Only 8 days til Christmas!

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Projects built from this plan. Thank you for submitting brag posts, it's appreciated by all!

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