Harriet Higher Chair

Is your child to old for a high chair, too young for a standard chair, and just the right size for a big phonebook that no one keeps around anymore?  For the cost of a cheapo plastic booster seat, you can build your child a modern higher chair.  This simple sturdy plan is easy to build, features a foot rest and is easy for youngsters to climb up on.  This chair is not meant to replace a high chair, and does not offer the security and safety of a high chair.

How to build a junior chair preschooler child
Author Notes: 

My only coworker has been complaining quite a bit about her office chair, so I thought it was time to show some appreciation for my number one associate and build her a chair.  She of course, had to help.

Mom, how and I supposed to work if you keep making me take pictures?
This chair is shown with a standard height table (my Big Ur Table if you are looking for plans).  This chair is perfect for preschoolers, who don't need the security of a high chair, but still could use an extra boost.  For sure a luxury if you had to buy such a chair, but in our DIY world where all things are possible on the smallest of budgets, why buy a plastic booster seat when you can make a mod style solid wood chair for the same cost?  And this chair is really cool because the base supports act as a step up, so children can seat themselves at the table.
This chair is of course a modified version of our Harriet Chair.  
But before we get to the plans, I wanted to take a minute to share with you an amazing amazing amazing resource for finishing furniture projects.  I will be the first to admit that building is the easy part, and finishing can be so challenging.  And I often find that even the most discouraging projects can become the most beautiful with the right finish.
But it's always been a challenge for me to supply the best possible information on finishes.  Building has always been my focus, and I still get nervous every time I pull out a paint brush, despite painting hundreds of pieces of furniture.  
When my friend Shaunna, an expert on finishing furniture, mentioned that she was writing an ebook about finishing, I couldn't wait to read it.  But when I finally did, I was blown away by the photos, the videos, the details, and most of all the furniture and the finishes.  
I've learned so much from this book, and was delighted to find even a section just for us!  So if you get a chance, I hope you take a second to check out Shaunna's ebook, Creating Your Masterpiece.
Here are just a few of the photos of the finishes and techniques Shaunna goes through in the Creating Your Masterpiece.
And Shaunna even made this table modified from our plans and finished it.  Love the shelf!
And one more photo.  You can find Creating Your Masterpiece here.

And now, if I haven't lost you, the plans!
Shopping List: 

2 - 2x2 @ 8 feet long

1 - 1x12 @ 15" long
1 - 1x6 @ 15" long
2 inch screws
2 1/2 inch screws
2 1/2 inch pocket hole screws
wood glue
wood filler
120 grit sandpaper
primer
wood conditioner
paint
paint brush
Tools: 
measuring tape
square
pencil
safety glasses
hearing protection
drill
compound miter saw
sander
level
countersink drill bit
General Instructions: 

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!

Dimensions: 
This chair is child sized, for an adult sized table. Could be modified to an bar stool with modifications to height and depth
Cut List: 

2 - 2x2 @ 8 1/4" - one end at 10 degrees off square, shortest point

2 - 2x2 @ 10 1/16" - one end at 10 degrees off square, shortest point
2 - 2x2 @ 21 5/16" - both ends at 10 degrees off square, parallel to each other
2- 2x2 @ 21" (Front Legs)
2 - 2x2 @ 12" (Front Support/Apron)
1 - 1x12 @ 15" (Seat)
2 - 2x2 @ 19" (Back Supports)
1 - 2x2 @ 9" (Back Base)
1 - 1x6 @ 15" (Backrest)
Step 1: 

Begin by building two of the above pieces. Make sure both match exactly. Use with either 2 1/2" screws countersunk and glue or 2 1/2" pocket hole screws.

Step 2 Instructions: 

Join the two sides with the front apron/support as shown above. Use the same screws and glue.

Step 3 Instructions: 

Now the top. This time you will need to use 2" screws so the screws don't poke through the seat. Also screw the side aprons to the seat.

Step 4 Instructions: 

Now build the back. Go back to the 2 1/2" fasteners. Adjust for square.

Step 5 Instructions: 

And then attach the seat support to the backrest with 2" screws countersunk and glue. Make sure that this is very square. Mine is actually slightly crooked and it BUGS me.

Step 6 Instructions: 

Finally, adjust the seat rest to fit in the seat back. Measure, use a level at the top, and screw in place. I actually sat my daughter in the chair to get the support just right.

Preparation Instructions: 
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth. It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.
Estimated Cost: 
Skill Level: 
Style: 

Wood Pullout Cabinet Drawer Organizer

After organizing my junk drawer successfully, I felt confident and inspired to tackle some more cabinet storage.  And of course, first up, what to do with all the princess plates, lunchroom trays and sippy cups with missing lids.

How about a drawer, right at the height of a four year old?  And how about a nice deep drawer, with a big chalkboard label on it?
Of course, you could install this drawer on the bottom shelf, make the drawer have taller or shorter sides, or even put it under the sink for trash cans . . . and attach the cabinet door to the front of it for a real pullout trash can on a super budget.  There are no limits, beyond your time and your imagination.
I'm going to show you today how I built this drawer for Grace (and will probably be building more drawers for my pots and pans and maybe even one for our dog  . . . ) and you can easily modify it to fit your cabinets.  I spent about $10 on the drawer, with $6 for the 1x6 (I actually had scraps so this was free for me) and about $4 for the drawer slides.  I also used half of a 2x2, so there's another buck. I made the chalkboard label with scrap plywood and chalkboard paint and glued in on.  The drawer as shown here has not yet been finished.

Author Notes: 

Shopping List: 

1 - 1x6 @ 8 feet long

1 - 2x2 @ 4 feet long
scrap 1/4" plywood 
21" Drawer Slides
2 inch screws
1 1/4 inch finish nails
wood glue
wood filler
Tools: 
measuring tape
square
pencil
hammer
safety glasses
hearing protection
drill
circular saw
sander
countersink drill bit
General Instructions: 

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!

Custom to fit your Cabinets
Cut List: 

Cut to fit your cabinets.

Step 1: 

The first thing you need to do is measure the opening of your cabinets and the depth of your cabinets. Mine had a clearance opening (the hinges took up a little room too) of 14 1/2". Remember that your drawer slides also take up 1" all for both, so that's a total drawer width of 13 1/2". To be safe, I made mine 13" wide, and cut 2 1x6s to this length. Then I measured the depth of the opening. Mine was 22 3/4" deep. So I cut the 2x2s to the depth of the cabinet and then cut the two 1x6s to this measurement minus 1 1/2" - so for me, 21 1/4". I then cut the 1/4" plywood to 13" x 22 3/4".

Step 2 Instructions: 

With all the boards cut, I built a simple box (used 1 1/4" pocket hole screws but you could also use 2" screws countersunk) and glue. The I tapped the bottom on with 1 1/4" finish nails and glue.

Step 3 Instructions: 

Because these cheapo drawer slides (that actually work really well and are quite strong) are side/bottom mount, you can get away with just tacking 1/4" plywood to the bottom. The weight of the drawer contents sits right on the slides. I attached the two drawer parts of the slides to the bottom of the drawer as shown above.

Step 4 Instructions: 

Then I attached the remaining drawer slide pieces to the 2x2s as shown here. Make sure these pieces are attached level and in the same position on both 2x2s. This is important. I used the screws that came with the slides, and followed the directions on the slides.

Step 5 Instructions: 

And now it's time to test it out. I just screwed the 2x2s directly to my workbench and oh yeah! it works!

Step 6 Instructions: 

Then I simply positioned the whole setup inside the cabinet, and because of the tight fit, screwed the 2x2s to the shelf from the underside. But if you had more clearance from the top, you could screw from the top too. Used 2" screws here, just two per 2x2.

Step 7 Instructions: 

And then just put the drawer in. The drawer is easy to remove and clean (and in my case, finish) and I really love the 2x2s in there, because they keep things from sliding under your drawer. Off to build . . . six more.

Preparation Instructions: 
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth. It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.
Project Type: 
Estimated Cost: 
Room: 
Skill Level: 
Style: 

Wood Drawer Organizers

Building wood drawer dividers for existing drawers can be easy and easily customized for your drawers. With this simple plan, you can divide and conquer even the messiest of Junk Drawers.

Author Notes: 

Welcome, welcome, welcome to our dream home.

And thank you for your patience and understanding with the site as we've made this move.  I know that there have been many issues, and I'm sure there will still be some bugs that need to be worked out, and I appreciate so much that you are working with me on this, and share my vision for less browsing, more building. 
Please, shoot me an email if you have a site suggestion.  I can't promise to answer every email, or take every recommendation, but I do read and make decisions based on your feedback.  Thank you to those of you who have already submitted feedback.
I also appreciate everyone's patience with me as I focused my time toward building the site instead of building projects, and have not been able to post as often as usual. I cannot wait to get back to building and building more!
It isn't just my posts that have been neglected in this past month.  As I look around my home, swear the scale is broken (true story - I went over to the neighbors today to weigh myself because I was certain our scale was broken . . . and it's not) and try to figure out which room to start on first, it's not in dismay.  I actually feel oddly accomplished at the chaos.
Have you been here?  You've been up all day (and probably all night too), haven't sat for a second, you cooked, cleaned, paid bills, did laundry, cooked again, did the dishes yet again . . . and then your husband comes home and looks around the still messy house and says "Sooooo . . . what did you do today?"  
The most difficult part of being a homemaker for me has always been feeling like no matter what I do, how hard I work, I am not accomplishing anything.  And some kind person is going to comment that we are raising beautiful children, and what could be more accomplishing than that, and they are absolutely right.  But on a day to day basis, my biggest struggle has always been seeing that first, and seeing the room I just cleaned get destroyed in five minutes and being okay with picking it all up all over again.
But as I look around at our home in it's current state of disarray, it says to me, Ana, you do matter.  Because look what happens when you are not there to straighten up a bookcase that you think no one will ever notice, do an extra load of laundry, clean the tub.  That little bit of dusting here and there, though never enough, it does matter.  I am making a difference.  
So in an odd way, I find myself encouraged to start getting my home back into order.  And you just gotta start in the kitchen, and I decided to tackle my room of shame.  Rather, drawer of shame.
I still am trying to come to terms with the fact that this very drawer has been this horrible for several YEARS . . . and for about the cost of a cup of coffee, and for about the amount of time it takes to drink that cup of coffee, I could have had this . . .
Especially considering I spent $100 on plastic organizers for the matching drawer . . . and they just don't every stay in place quite right.  $2 and an hour.  Why didn't I do this years ago?
Do you have a junk drawer?  Take this morning and organize it with dividers, and I'm going to show you just how.
Shopping List: 

1 - 1x3 @ 8 feet long

2 inch screws
wood glue
wood filler
120 grit sandpaper
Tools: 
measuring tape
square
pencil
safety glasses
hearing protection
drill
circular saw
sander
countersink drill bit
General Instructions: 

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!

Dimensions: 
Custom to fit your Drawers
Cut List: 

Cut to fit your drawers

Step 1: 

One thing I learned when designing and developing this website was that you have to think in columns. The junk drawer is no different. First we need to divide it into columns. So take a measurement of the inside depth or your drawers.

That is of course after you have done the most difficult part - clean the drawer out and then remove it from the cabinet.

Step 2 Instructions: 

If you have an extra wide drawer like I do, you may wish to use two dividers. For a narrow drawer, just one divider down the center. First and foremost, consider what you will be storing inside the compartments. Bills? Envelopes? Letter sized paper? Pens and pencils? Take some time to consider as you plan your dividers. Lay the main dividers out as shown above.

Step 3 Instructions: 

Then screw two smaller dividers to each of the long dividers as shown above. Do not make the compartments so small that you cannot reach inside the compartments easily.

Step 4 Instructions: 

Finally, add the center dividers to divide up the center space and to keep the side dividers in place. Use 2" screws and glue.

Step 5 Instructions: 

Replace drawer, replace junk. Give your kids a pep talk about everything having a place, and voila! junk drawer is no longer the room of shame.

Preparation Instructions: 
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth. It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.
Finish Used: 
Because this drawer is going to hold eating utensils, I simple gave the wood a good sanding a a coat of mineral oil to seal it.
Estimated Cost: 
Room: 
Skill Level: 
Style: 

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