Make a rectangular stool

How to make a dollshouse needlepoint rectangular stool


These doll’s house scale rectangular stools are great little pieces of furniture!

Room setting showing a rectangular stool and a piano



They can be placed in many different rooms in your doll’s house, such as the drawing room, bedroom, hallway or even music room – they make brilliant piano stools!

Miniature needlepoint tutorial - contents of a rectangular stool kit


This Janet Granger miniature needlepoint kit includes two parts: a ‘stitching’ component, which comprises a piece of 32 count silk gauze, colour block chart, detailed instructions with diagrams, a needle and Anchor stranded cotton; and also a ‘wooden stool’ component comprising unvarnished pre-cut wooden parts, a foam pad for the stool top and instructions for how to make this quality furniture kit.

This tutorial features the ‘Tree of Life’ stool design, but there are several others to choose from in our Needlepoint Kit Store.




If you have never done miniature needlepoint before, start by reading the BASIC EQUIPMENT and NEEDLEPOINT STITCHES tutorials first, then come back to this page.

Miniature needlepoint tutorial - silk gauze in a card mount


Before you begin stitching, you will need to make a card mount for the silk gauze. This will make it much easier to work on, and help to keep your stitch tension even. Cut a piece of stiff card 3¾ x 4¼ inches, with an aperture of 2¼ x 2 ¾ inches. Fix the silk gauze to the card with masking tape along all four edges, as tautly as possible.

See the HOW TO MOUNT SILK GAUZE tutorial for details.

Miniature needlepoint tutorial - start at the centre of the silk gauzeIdentify the thread colours supplied in the kit using the colour key, then, using tent stitch and one strand of the Anchor stranded cotton, start the design in the centre. Remember that one square on the chart equals one stitch, and always use a ‘stabbing’ motion, not a ‘sewing’ (scooping) one.

When the stitching is complete, if it has become slightly mis-shapen (especially if you did not use a card mount to hold the silk gauze taut), press it on the reverse side with a medium hot iron with steam, on a padded ironing board, pulling the fabric gently if necessary to get it dead square.

Miniature needlepoint tutorial - preparing to mount the stitching on the cushion pad

Trim the finished stitching so that there is a margin of half an inch of unworked gauze on each side. It is NOT necessary or desirable to use a fabric glue around the edges first. With a sharp pencil, lightly mark the centre points along each of the four sides, in the unworked border, on both sides of the gauze. Mark the centre lines in pencil on the card, then carefully glue the backing card to the foam using white tacky glue (see the assembly instructions, further down this page). These lines will make it much easier to position your stitching centrally on the foam pad.


Miniature needlepoint tutorial - glue one edge of the gauze to the back of the cushion pad

Using white tacky glue, spread a line about three eighths of an inch wide along one long edge of the card backing board (not the gauze). Leave the glue to dry off for a few moments, then place the foam pad centrally onto the back of your stitching, card side up, using the pencilled guidelines to ensure that it is lined up. Wrap the gauze around the foam pad, and press the gauze into place onto the card. Briefly turn the pad over, to make sure that the design is centrally positioned, then leave the glue to dry completely.

Miniature needlepoint tutorial - trim off the corners of the silk gauze
Repeat this gluing and wrapping process with the second long edge. Do not rush this stage! Next, trim the spare gauze which overhangs the short edges, cutting off a piece a quarter of an inch by the depth of the overhang. This will reduce bulk.

Miniature needlepoint tutorial - fold over the end of the silk gauzeCrease the gauze ready to fold it up over the backing board, as you would when wrapping a parcel. Spread glue along one of the short edges of the card backing board. Wrap the gauze up and around the foam pad, pulling tightly just before pressing down onto the board, in order to get neat corners. Check that the design is still central on the pad. When the glue has dried, repeat for the fourth side.


Miniature needlepoint tutorial - Lightly sand all the wooden componentsTO ASSEMBLE THE STOOL

First, identify the wooden parts, referring to the instruction sheet that comes with the kit.

Lightly sand all the wooden components.



Miniature needlepoint tutorial - Glue the foam pad to the cardboard piece


Glue the foam pad to the cardboard piece, pressing together firmly, and leave to dry completely. See the separate stitching assembly instructions for how to mount the stitching on the pad (above).



Miniature needlepoint tutorial - fix the short end pieces into position


Place the large wooden base piece on a flat surface, and spread glue thinly over the ends (one at a time), then fix the short end pieces into position, holding in place for a few seconds.



Miniature needlepoint tutorial - add the long sides


Once the glue has completely dried, add the long sides in the same way. This should create a shallow rebate on the top surface of the stool for the foam pad to fit into later.




Miniature needlepoint tutorial - Sand the cabriole legs


Sand the cabriole legs so that each vertical surface of the leg is smoothly rounded. The ‘foot’ of the leg should be sanded so that it is nicely curved almost round, but still with a flat surface where it will touch the floor.



Miniature needlepoint tutorial - Glue each leg into position on the base piece


Glue each leg into position on the base piece (making sure that the legs are glued onto the flat underside, not the side with the rebate to take the cushion pad).



Miniature needlepoint tutorial - varnish the stool


When the glue has dried, varnish the stool with two coats of coloured interior wood varnish (we used a medium oak colour for this tutorial) and a coat of clear varnish as well if you prefer. Once the stitching has been mounted on the pad, carefully glue it into position on the stool.


The completed rectangular stool

The wooden doll’s house rectangular stool kit has its own instruction sheet included, and is easily glued together and varnished if you wish.

Finally, the covered foam pad can be fitted into the wooden stool top and glued in place. Make sure that the stain or varnish that you use has completely dried before you fit the stitched seat pad into it.


Miniature needlepoint tutorial - three other designs of the rectangular stool

Now that you have seen how easy it is to stitch and assemble a miniature needlepoint rectangular stool kit using the ‘Tree of Life’ design as an example, why not visit our Needlepoint Kit Store to see some of the other designs that are available? There is bound to be a design suitable for your own doll’s house!