If you remember, the last few times that I’ve been here I’ve created projects out of reclaimed wood like this beautiful Mason Jar Pendant Light as well as my stunning Potting Bench. However, today I’m going to be working with items that anyone can find at their local and favorite home improvement store.
Recently, a friend of my husband and I’s created a cute, little girl’s loft bed, and of course, as soon as as our daughter saw this creation she was head-over-heels in love with it. Needless to say, we figured it couldn’t be too hard to figure out how to design our own version, and started looking on the web for inspiration.
Word of advice.When doing your research try to do it while your kid(s) are sleeping or not in the room. There are so many extravagant versions online and unfortunately the room we are working with (as well as our budget!) would not even come close to accommodating such intriguing designs. They are truly gorgeous though!
So, first on the list is the version that our friends used. Definitely cute, but not “princess-y” enough for Miss Ava.
Can’t see the video? Watch it here, and get the full written tutorial below.
6 sheets 1/2″ cabinet grade plywood
2 sets of hinges
paint of your choice
drill and bits
miter saw or circular saw
nail gun (brad)
ruler or anything with a straightedge
1.) Measure whatever bed you will be using for the top portion of your loft bed. Not all children’s mattresses are the same so just to be on the safe side make sure you know the exact measurements before proceeding.
2.) Take your two front panels and rip them to the appropriate width. Our total width was 79″ so we cut that in half, and each panel was 39.5″. Next, we cut the panels to our desired height (which was 60″). Don’t forget, you can most definitely use whatever height you would like!
TIP: If you do not feel comfortable cutting such large pieces (or if you do not have the room to do so) a lot of the “big box” stores have panel saws and they can do it for you.
3.) Then, stack these two pieces on top of each other, and clamp them together.
4.) Draw out your desired windows and doors. As you can see in the below picture we are only drawing out half of the door, but then the entire window.
5.) To make the arch of the window and door use a metal straight edge ruler and bend it. A second pair of hands definitely helps on this step!
6.) To make the rounded cuts for our particular door and window designs make sure to use a medium to fine blade with your jigsaw.
P.S. Don’t throw our your “innards” from your windows. You can cut them in half and turn them into shutters!
7.) Next, cut your side panels to the appropriate height of your first two panels, and then to your desired width. Our side panel size is 60″ H x 38″ W.
8.) Then, rip four 1″ x 60″ strips and glue and nail them to the outer sides of your side panel as shown. This will give our corners a 1″ thickness for our screws to bite into.
9.) We then used 1 1/4″ coarse drywall screws to connect the panels.
NOTE: We did not glue our panels together so we could take them apart at a later date.
10.) Next, we cut the back panel which was 14″ x 79″ as well as a decorative two inch arch into ours, but it is not necessary.
11.) Attach the back panel to the sides with your 1 1/4″ coarse drywall screws.
12.) For the bedrails support we ripped 1 1/4″ strips and nailed and glued them together in a L-shape. Our length was 76″ long.
13.) We installed them 9″ from the top on all sides with 3/4″ wood screws.
NOTE: This height was based upon the thickness of our mattress. Base your height on the mattress you will be using.
Below is a view from the inside above the door.
And here is a view from the inside of the back panel.
14.) Next, we added a decorative castle molding that was 10″ x 81″. The notches were 4″ x 6″, and cut out with a jigsaw.
TIP: This molding also serves as a railing so it can be adjusted however tall you would like it for your child.
15.) With the leftover pieces we ripped them to 38″ and cut the pieces to a total of 79″. These were then attached to the bedrails with 1 1/4″ wood screws.
16.) On to the stairs! Two 9″ x 60″ strips were cut and mitered on the ends at approximately 50 degrees. We cut and glued 1″ x 8 1/2″ strips parallel to the top and bottom with 9″ spacing. The step treads were cut to 9″ x 15 1/2″ and then glued and nailed to the treads on top of the strips with a 1/2″ overhang.
17.) We cut and fit boards to fit under the steps as risers. It’s best to measure each space and cut each board to fit as to avoid gaps.
The steps were screwed to the castle with 3/4″ wood screws. The outer railing is 60″h x 38″w with a downward slant (parallel to the stairs) and provides the stability to the stairs. The panel on the back is 16 1/2″ w x 15″ h and is glued and nailed in place.
18.) Some leftover trim and a 2×4″ gave us a nice decorative molding for the top edge. The trim was cut to length and nailed in place and the 2×4 is attached from the top using 3″ wood screws.
19.) We used some 1 1/4″ strips to trim the corners and bottom (also covers the screwheads).
20.) Cut your “innards” from your windows in half, add hinges, and then add them as shutters on your princess castle loft bed.
21.) Sand down all of your rough edges.
22.) Paint your entire creation with a coat of primer.
23.) Then, all you need to do is paint this beauty any which way that you’d like! Miss Ava requested a lot of pink so… we went all “pink power”!
24.) Finally, enjoy your beautiful new creation, or in our case, let your child enjoy it!
I have to admit… I’m pretty excited how well this loft bed turned out! We still have a lot of work to do in this room since we’re revamping it from formerly being my studio, but overall it is going to provide Ava with so much more room in this small space.
I’m sure I’ll add more details, curtains, and maybe even some glitter (yikes!) at a later date. I just need to convince the little one that there are other colors besides pink that will work well in her room. Wish me luck!
Cost and Time Involved:
nails & screws: $20
This project can definitely be accomplished in one weekend! The longest part of the whole process was just painting and putting the finishing touches on this beauty. What do you guys think? I’d love to hear from you!
I hope you enjoyed reading this tutorial and happy building,