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Duck Step Stool

This adorable duck stool is simple to make and sure to be loved.

Source: The Martha Stewart Show, September 2009


  • Two 16-by-16-inch pieces of MDF (medium-density fiberboard) for duck sides

  • One 10-by-12-inch piece of 3/4-inch MDF for tread

  • Handheld drill

  • 1 1/4-inch and 1/2-inch wood screws

  • Clamps

  • Work table or two sawhorses

  • Pencil

  • 3/4-inch spade bit

  • Medium-grit sanding sponge

  • 5-inch brackets, any type

  • 1/8-inch drill bit

  • Primer

  • Glidden semigloss paint in Sunflower and Orange Slice

  • Foam brush and bristle paintbrush

  • Painters' tape

  • Behr Non-Skid paint additive


  1. Enlarge duck stool template 200 percent on a printer or copier. The enlarged template will print on multiple pages, so match and tape the pieces together to make one large template.

  2. Screw the two pieces of 16-by-16-inch MDF together with 1 1/4-inch wood screws, and clamp to a table or to two sawhorses. Trace the shape of the template onto the stacked MDF and cut along the solid lines with a jigsaw.

  3. Drill the eye hole where indicated on the template with a 3/4-inch spade bit.

  4. Sand all edges with a medium-grit sanding sponge.

  5. Temporarily place tread piece against duck sides, where indicated by dashed line on template. Mark the placement of the tread and the brackets that will hold the tread in place. Screw brackets to duck sides.

  6. Mark and pre-drill screw holes with a 1/8-inch drill bit and screw on tread.

  7. Prime the assembled duck white, allow to dry, then paint yellow with a foam brush. (We used semigloss paint to make the stool water-resistant). Let dry completely and sand between coats. You may need 3 or 4 coats to get an even color.

  8. Tape around the tread with 1-inch painters' tape. Place painters' tape around the duck bill and cut the detailed duck bill shape into the tape with a craft knife, as indicated on the template.

  9. Stir 1 part Non-Skid additive into 1 part orange paint.

  10. Using a regular bristle paintbrush, paint the tread with Non-Skid paint. Paint bill with plain orange paint.

  11. When dry, remove painters' tape.

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