This weekend, my 17-yr-old and I made 27 footstools for my guitar classes at school. This simple and economical design is based on an idea I got from Suzanne Shull at the GAMA Teaching Guitar Workshop in Atlanta a couple of weeks ago. The most basic design is 3 8-inch 2x4's screwed together. This makes for a foot stool aproximately 6 inches tall.
If you turn it on its end you get a footstool that's approximately 8 inches tall . So you have two heights in one footstool. I also used some extra wood to make about five of the footstools 4 blocks high. This is a little more stable than the 3 blocks turned on end.
I also made one footstool that's a 4x4 block with a 2x4 attached. I only made one of these. The 4x4 is what we got at the workshop one day as our footstool. I just screwed a 2x4 to it to make it a little taller.
This year I'm going to have my students actually sit in classical position with footstools. I haven't in the past because I didn't have a way to purchase footstools for an entire class. I thought the wood block idea was pretty good and it's inexpensive. So, I'm giving this a try.
The total cost for the lumber and a box of screws was just under $25.00. Sweet. It also helps to have a teenager to help put them together. Thanks, Matthew!
August 18: Since I posted this, I've had the opportunity to use them in class for about a week. I think the flexibility of the 3-block high version is great. Four blocks is too high for many of the taller kids playing the full-size instruments and also for smaller kids with 3/4 size guitars.
I like the both-sizes-in-one flexibility of the 3-block. I don't have to swap footstools out. I have three different classes and I need both height options at each seat. I'm thinking about taking a board off the 4-block version.