DIY loft bed, playhouse and reading nook


As much as we loved our daughter’s cheerful rainbow bedroom, it was utterly chaotic, cramped and cluttered. It also had barely changed since I was pregnant with her, so she was due for something new as we approach her fifth birthday.

We knew we wanted to build a loft bed to go from wall to wall, giving her an elevated play area. She was always bringing toys into bed with her, so we thought having a play area/reading nook that was practically in the bed — but still separate — would be a good idea.

Now, this may seem like a huge project — and it was — but it wasn’t especially complicated. Even though this is a large structure with lots of moving parts, we built the entire thing in less than 24 hours thanks to my mom taking the kids for a sleepover. (I think we went to Kent four times and ate four meals of take-out burgers. It was awesome.)

The first step was finding the studs and securing 2×8 boards to the walls to support the bed. We used more than 100 screws for this step alone, just to make sure it wasn’t going anywhere — no matter how many kids piled onto the bed.

And here’s the view that includes the bookcase I shared a few weeks back.

We used 2x4s to support the mattress and raised play area, with sheets of thick plywood on top. We could have gotten away with fewer supports — I grumbled as I primed and painted each one — but my handy husband wasn’t taking any chances.

We originally planned to close off the lower play area just with curtains, but then I got the brilliant idea — mid-project, as usually happens — to build huge doors that would swing out into the room.

By having doors instead of curtains, I could add all kinds of fun details like house numbers and a mailbox. My ever-patient husband agreed and helped me draw up new plans, and we made an evening run back to Kent.

The plan changed again once we got there …

Continue reading in my weekly DIY column, My Handmade Home …

Thank you to Kent for sponsoring this project — providing the paint and a portion of the lumber. All repeat trips (sometimes twice a day) prove how much we really, really love shopping there. 

Love this vintage lock plate from Phillips & Chestnut Victorian Salvage and Decor

Continue reading in my weekly DIY column, My Handmade Home …

Product sources:
White faux fur pillows: Handmade, fabric from Atlantic Fabrics
Loft bed paint: PPG’s “Rice Chips” from Kent
Wall colour: PPG’s “Pinot Noir” from Kent
Blush-coloured fuzzy throw: HomeSense
White wooden “C”: Michaels
Floral pillow: Handmade, fabric is from the Anne of Green Gables collection at Atlantic Fabrics
Vintage lock plate: Phillips & Chestnut Victorian Salvage and Decor
White powder-coated mailbow: Kent
Chandelier: Canarm Daya flushmount light from Kent

Related posts:
DIY bookcase from end tables
How to replace a light fixture

So what do you think?

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