Offer quick additional seating with these DIY fabric folding stools that tuck away when not in use. They're super sturdy thanks to a base made from hardware-store pipe pieces.

By Sydney Price
July 25, 2018
inside of window in shed

For durable folding chairs, try this simple DIY project featuring store-bought pipe pieces. Whether you use them as garden stools, camp stools, or indoor seating, they’ll add a fun and functional industrial vibe to any space. Make a set so you can break them out when you need extra seats for guests. Double up on function by hanging them on wall hooks—the folded fabric offers a handy pouch for books or magazines. Since they easily fold away, they’re also ideal for small spaces.

Discover more ways to use pipes in your home decor.

  • Start to finish 1 hr
  • Difficulty Kind of Easy
  • Involves Sewing, Drilling

What you need


How to do it

Part 1

Step 1

Sew Fabric Seat

Sew a loop on both ends of the piece of fabric by folding each end under about 2 inches. You’ll slip the pipe frame through these loops, so use one of your 3/4-inch-thick pipe pieces to determine the loop size. You can hand-sew or machine-sew it; just be sure to use thick outdoor fabric that can hold the weight of someone sitting on it.

pipe folding chair drilling pilot hole
Step 2

Drill Holes in Pipes

Drill an 1/8-inch pilot hole through the center of each of the 18-inch pipes, then use a 1/4-inch bit to expand each hole. Drill over a piece of scrap wood to protect your work surface and use clamps to hold the pipe in place while drilling. Wear proper protection for drilling through metal, including work gloves and eyewear.

DIY folding chair add pipe elbows
add pipe elbows after threading through fabric
attach pipes to elbows for fabric stool
Step 3

Assemble Pipe Frame

Add an elbow joint to one end of both the 10-inch and the 12-inch pipe. Thread the two pipes through the fabric loops you created, then add another elbow to the opposite end of each pipe. Attach an 18-inch pipe to each elbow. These will be the stool legs.

attach caps to pipe lengths
feeding carriage bolts through pipe lengths
Step 4

Add Caps and Form Folding Joint

Add a cap to the end of each leg. Thread a carriage bolt through the center holes you drilled in the legs at the X where the pipes meet, inserting a washer between the two pipes on each side. Add a second washer to the end of each bolt, then attach lock nuts to secure. Apply a threadlocker to the bolts to seal and prevent rusting.


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