My Site #22: Elevated Bed

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Blog entry by RavinHeart posted 07-05-2012 01:44 AM 3577 reads 1 time favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 21: Garden Stakes Part 22 of My Site series Part 23: Shop Time with Kari Hultman »

So, … my wife and daughter are planning on “re-doing” or redecorating my daughters room. She is going from the little kid room to the pre-teen stage. From stuffed animals and buckets of toys and little girls outfits … to makeup and pictures of boys and pop music. The bright green walls are staying and the pink walls are going to be painted blue. The pink frilly comforter is being traded out for a “more grown up” one. I’m not sure I’m ok with all of this yet, but, regardless, … it’s going to happen.

Her room is no bigger than any ordinary room in a typical ranch house. A little over 12’ x 12’. To fit everything in there, there has to be a few “big” changes. Some of the stuff we need to get in the room, includes a dresser (to fit all the clothes), a new (old refurbished) makeup stand with mirrors, a twin bed, the roll top desk from the office, and some shelves. The room is not that big. To fit everything in, I figured out a way to get the bed, dresser, and shelves to occupy the same space. So, I did some measuring and figured out the heights and widths I would need to use.

I decided to make an elevated bed. That way the dresser and the shelving can fit underneath. The space behind the dresser can serve as storage for winter clothes in the summer and vice versa. We determined that the height needed to be no higher than the bottom of the window it will be next to. We also knew the size of bed that it needed to accommodate.

At first I sketched a few simple things on paper and then used Google SketchUp to draw up some basic plans. I am far from a SkethUp pro. I am actually not all that good with it. In a previous career I had used AutoCAD a lot. It is similar and very different at the same time. But, SketchUp helped to figure out sizes and how to fit things in underneath. The SketchUp drawing is, what I consider rough, but there is a link below.

The materials need not be very “fancy” seeing the bed is going to be painted white. Simple pine construction lumber will suffice for the structural components. I chose the high grade pine from the big box store for the one by material in the bed. The supports for the mattress are going to be hardwood (probably maple but … possibly oak) supporting a sheet of 3/8” plywood. I put together a spreadsheet of materials for the break down and the “shopping list”.

The materials are all purchased and on the lumber rack in the garage. The breakdown of the stock will be happening soon. That way the wood can find its new home and acclimate to the shop. Rabbits, loose tenons, and a few traditional mortise and tenons, will be the main joinery along with some pocket holes used as clamps. The bed will be too large to build in the shop (which is a basement shop) and move up to the bedroom. It will be too big to even get down the hall to the bedroom. So, I will build and dry fit the entire bed in a room downstairs. It will be completely constructed, minus the glue, downstairs. The idea is to then disassemble the bed and paint all the surfaces not involved in a joint and then reassemble the bed in the bedroom.

Soon starts the bed build … I just hope to stay ahead of the rest of the redecorating …

SketchUp Plan

-- RavinHeart - Wisconsin

2 comments so far

View A Slice of Wood Workshop's profile

A Slice of Wood Workshop

1073 posts in 3196 days

#1 posted 07-05-2012 03:09 AM

My firehouse has residents that live there and run calls. One of the guys has a huge recliner, I’m talking about the widest one I’ve ever seen. The bedrooms the the firehouse are smaller, maybe 10×12 so we had to get creative in figuring out how to get the recliner through the doorway and also how to get it to look nice in his room. He did the exact same thing your talking about and it has worked out great.

-- Follow me on YouTube-

View derosa's profile


1577 posts in 2859 days

#2 posted 07-05-2012 05:24 AM

I found that making the side rails with stub tenons and bolts to hold it in place works really well, the shakers used it a lot. You can buy the specialty bolts at woodcraft/rockler or make a version of your own which I did. Doesn’t allow for any movement and knocks down easy enough. Nice looking plan overall, I don’t envy you the switch over, I just transferred mine from the crib to the toddler bed and felt a touch nostalgic that she didn’t need it any more.

-- --Rev. Russ in NY-- A posse ad esse

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