How To Make DIY Constructed-In Bunk Beds


Our DIY wall-to-wall bunk beds on the seaside space are whole (!!) and I’m excited to proportion with you guys how we constructed them. Even though, it must be famous that my pleasure pales compared to our children’ once they noticed the much-talked-about bunks in spite of everything turn out to be a fact.


diy built in wall to wall bunk beds with children

And if I’m being completely truthful, I used to be slightly worried about this venture. This was once our first time development bunk beds, which felt considerably extra top stakes than, say, development a bookcase or a desk. This can be a mattress that actually FLOATS IN THE AIR so one particular person can sleep ON TOP OF ANOTHER PERSON (or the occasional chihuahua).


diy built in wall to wall bunk beds with chihuahua on bottom bunk

However my nerves are calmed by means of the truth that we’re extraordinarily proud of the way it became out, and the way extraordinarily robust they’re (Sherry and I’ve been up at the best bunk in combination and it’s cast as a rock). It wasn’t precisely a directly line attending to the top product, so I sought after to proportion the method so you’ll report this submit subsequent to the masses of others lately on Pinterest. #bunkwagon

The Mission Steps We’ll Duvet

We’ve filled this submit with a whole lot of main points, however right here’s the gist of what we’ll duvet:

  • How we constructed (and later revised) a platform for the ground bunk
  • How we securing hooked up a floating platform for the highest bunk
  • How we selected the peak and spacing for the bunk
  • How we trimmed out the venture to cause them to glance integrated
  • How we added and stained the ladder and railing


detail of bottom bunk of built in wall to wall bunk beds

This area is lovely distinctive in that it was once the best width for wall-to-wall dual XL mattresses. The room is precisely 81.5″ vast and a dual XL is 80″, so there’s simply sufficient wiggle room to very easily tuck in a sheet or bedspread. Having identified that early on in renovating this space, we made up our minds lovely briefly that this might be a really perfect spot for additonal lengthy bunks. Including some overflow drowsing area + novelty-factor for any kiddos who keep right here (together with our personal bunk-obsessed offspring) = no brainer. However for the remaining 3 months, it just about seemed like this:


before shot of mattress on floor in bunk room

Development The Backside Bunk Mattress Platform

A couple of weekends in the past we in spite of everything were given to the “construct the bunk beds” line merchandise on our to-do checklist, and we hauled a number of two x 4″ forums all of the method from Richmond to Cape Charles, along side some items of plywood and a large number of heavy accountability screws. We began with the ground bunk which we made up our minds to construct without delay at the flooring to maximise headroom for every mattress. Observe: After some debate, we nixed the theory of any below mattress garage for simplicity’s sake, and since we didn’t need the carry the mattress an excessive amount of off the ground for more youthful sleepers like our son. We’ll be including some drawer garage somewhere else within the room. 


building base frame of bottom bunk around walls

We later modified our minds (wonder!) and made up our minds to boost the ground bunk a couple of extra inches off the ground (no longer top sufficient for any drawers to make sense or the rest), however you’ll see how we redid this platform in a little. However for now, fake you’re blissfully ignorant of that vary. Ah building, you unpredictable animal.

The benefit of this room is that shall we connect 3 of the platform’s 4 aspects without delay into wall studs, which gave us a HUGE quantity of self belief within the durability of this contraption. So after I had the ones first 3 2×4″s across the perimeter minimize and secured into studs with lengthy screws, we minimize 3 quick items to create some go bracing below the platform, which you’ll see underneath. We’d return and upload extra afterward, however once more – you’re blissfully ignorant of that for now.




Since I don’t personal a framing nailer, I hooked up all of those the usage of my Kreg Jig. It makes pocket holes to your wooden that let you to enroll in items in reality tightly in combination. I’ve misplaced rely of what number of tasks I’ve used it for at this level, so I extremely counsel one.


drilling pocket holes using kreg jig into 2x4s

As soon as the cross-braces had been hooked up, I hooked up the fourth facet of my body around the entrance. I’m no framing knowledgeable, however I suppose a large number of other folks would simply construct your entire body to dimension, slide it into position, and safe it to the wall remaining. We debated this, however we relied on ourselves to get a extra actual are compatible (we in reality sought after this factor supremely cosy to the wall) if we constructed it in position as a substitute.


leveling base frame of bottom bunk bed

With the framing finished, we nailed down some planks of one/2″ plywood to create a cast floor for the bed to relaxation on. We used small 2 x 4′ plywood sheets as a result of they’re the most important shall we are compatible within the automobile with the whole thing else we had been trekking to the seaside space, so my 2 x 4″ cross-braces had been positioned to ensure every plywood edge rested at the body. Once more, I’d return later and upload extra reinforce below the center of every segment.


adding plywood to create base of bottom bunk bed

Developing The Floating Best Bunk Platform

Subsequent, we introduced within the backside bed so shall we determine how top we needed the second one bunk. This was once our major standards in deciding that top:

  1. We needed the headroom more or less equivalent on each bunks
  2. BUT we needed it cramped sufficient at the best bunk to deter horseplay / leaping / makes an attempt to get up
  3. AND we needed enough space at the backside bunk for an grownup to sit down up with out knocking their nogging (assume: right through storytime)

Lengthy tale quick – we cheated the highest bunk slightly upper than midway to perform #2 and #3. I’ll provide you with all the ultimate measurements on the finish of the submit, since that is sooner than we moved up the ground bunk a couple of extra inches later.


John measuring height and placement of top bunk

We adopted the similar procedure for the higher bunk, however with some changes that we discovered from establishing the decrease one. For one, we added some further go bracing to ensure the higher platform was once extraordinarily cast. And we broke out those heavy accountability “Rugged Structural Power” screws to safe it to the wall. We examine them on this DIY bunk mattress educational and my ears perked up on the thought of a “lag screw choice” that I may set up with my common driving force. They. Are. Superior.


rss rugged structural screw box from Home Depot

Putting in them nonetheless took slightly little bit of oomph (take a look at that lunge!) particularly to ensure all of my 2 x 4″ forums pulled tight into the stud, but it surely was once such a lot more effective than coping with cumbersome lag screws. No pilot holes wanted, and my common ol’ electrical driving force did the trick. We comic story {that a} hoard of untamed elephants may stampede this space and the one factor that will stay status could be those bunks. I’m no longer pronouncing I do know for a indisputable fact that they’re elephant-proof, however I’m lovely assured they’re…


John using force to drive RSS screws into 2x4

Once more, the method for making the higher platform was once the similar because the decrease – simply extra go braces (one each 12 inches-ish) and we used the ones heavy accountability screws to safe all the 2 x 4″ forums to the wall (proper into the studs at the again and each facet partitions), in addition to to safe the entrance piece to the remainder of the body.


top floating bunk added in wall to wall bunk beds

If the ones Rugged Power Screws are the heroes of this construct, then those bar clamps are the Robin to their Batman. They had been an enormous assist in conserving issues in position whilst we labored on attaching them.


using clamps to drill top bunk supports into place

It in the end were given too darkish out of doors for us to chop the higher plywood to dimension so it will relaxation flush towards the floating platform we had constructed (which is why you’ll see the plywood below the highest bed on this image overlapping), however we threw some complete items up there so shall we no less than take a look at how it will glance with the 2 mattresses in position. Thaaaaaaat’s once we discovered we didn’t just like the heights. ::facepalm::


two diy bunk bed platforms built and in place

Adjusting The Peak Of The Backside Bunk

Whilst we’d completed precisely what we had been going for with the highest bunk top (even small youngsters can’t leap round up there because it’s too with reference to the ceiling for the ones forms of acrobatics), we had overcompensated in our try to make the ground bunk-gap a little extra generously sized than the highest, and so they regarded extra asymmetric than we supposed (plus now a child may leap at the backside mattress, which might additionally lead to some critical head smacking – d’oh!).

So we made up our minds to boost the ground platform slightly bit since we additionally concluded it will glance nicer not to be so shut to the ground. This additionally makes it extra relaxed for an grownup to sit down on that backside mattress and skim a tale with out feeling like they’re crouched tremendous low to the bottom. Once more, I’ll proportion ultimate measurements on the finish of this submit, however we’ve been in reality proud of how the whole thing became out since we made the adjustment. I’ll leap forward yet another time to turn you the general proportions of the whole thing:


diy built in wall to wall bunk beds after shot

Brilliant and early the following morning we deconstructed the ground platform sufficient that shall we re-secure it slightly bit upper off the ground (this additionally gave us the danger so as to add a little extra go reinforce below the plywood). There’s so much occurring within the picture underneath, so don’t harm your self seeking to decipher it. Simply know that we added some scrap 2 x 4″s alongside the ground so we’d have a spot to nail within the baseboard, and because we had minimize some “legs” to glue the ones baseboard-holding forums, we additionally took the chance so as to add some reinforce legs within the center for just right measure too. Despite the fact that the platform was once absolutely secured to the wall, we figured why no longer!


bottom bunk reconstructed to float off of the floor

So with the ground platform fastened, we in spite of everything became again to reducing that plywood for the higher bunk to dimension and attaching it. It was once additionally an opportunity to place my cash the place my mouth was once (or my frame the place my construct was once?) and turn out to Sherry that this pet wasn’t going any place. Later when Sherry was once up there with me development the railing, we felt lovely nice that our mixed weight (just about 300 kilos!) was once no sweat for this floating platform.


John sitting on top bunk to nail plywood into floating platform

Including Trim, A Ladder, And Railings

On our subsequent go back and forth to Cape Charles we introduced the wooden for the trim and the railings, which is when those began to appear extra like integrated bunks. It in reality simply took some pre-primed 1 x 8″ forums nailed into position over the uncovered frames to decorate issues up, along side reinstalling the baseboard trim around the backside.


white trim pieces added to the face of bunk bed platforms

We had been operating off of those bunk beds from Studio McGee as our inspiration for the railing. We favored how clean-lined they had been and the combo of wooden and white was once great too. We idea the X-pattern alongside the highest rail may well be slightly busy in any such small room (and tougher to perform), however the whole thing else gave us a just right place to begin.


bunk bed inspiration photo from Studio McGee with wood railings

We purchased a number of two x 2″ sq. pine forums at House Depot to paintings with and we began with the ladder first. We minimize the 18″ vast rungs in teams to take a look at to stay the minimize dimension actual for every step. Right here it’s laid out at the hallway flooring.


bunk bed ladder pieces laid out in hallway for construction

To safe it in combination we used lengthy 5″ Rugged Power Screws in the course of the facet rail into every rung. We didn’t have a clamp that will grasp issues in combination, so we made positive I used to be operating on a flat floor (some scrap MDF leftover from the pantry venture) and may press the whole thing towards the wall to stay it in position as I screwed issues in. Additionally, notice the “blocks” that Sherry minimize and put between every rung to stay issues spaced calmly (our rungs are 12″ with the exception of best to best, so the spacers had been 10.5″). I extensively utilized any other scrap piece of wooden that I rested on best and pressed all the way down to stay the whole thing flush as I drove within the screw.


screwing 2x2 wood pieces together to create bunk bed ladder

As soon as it was once built we clamped the ladder into position and started mapping out the opposite portions of the railing, since they’d all be visually hooked up. Once more – clamps are the trusty sidekick of this venture.


clamps holding diy bunk bed ladder and railings in place

When we hooked up the ladder to the bunks (the usage of extra 5″ RSS screws) we discovered the two x 2″ rungs had been slightly small – like your foot felt find it irresistible wanted extra floor space to relaxation on. So we minimize longer items and hooked up them at the entrance of every rung (screwing them in from the bottom) to make every platform deeper (and a lot more relaxed). We additionally sanded all of the corners of the wooden so they’re extra like a rounded sq. edge versus an ideal graceful sharp one.


making ladder rungs thicker by adding another slat of 2x2

We secured the highest rails from the topside with extra RSS screws. Pictured underneath is the tiny best rail at the wall facet of the ladder. Generally we might’ve simply put the ladder proper towards the wall, however it will have interfered with the sunshine transfer, so we floated it off a few inches – which is in fact great as a result of while you grasp the facet of the ladder there’s room on your arms to wrap round it. Labored out in reality neatly.


ryobi drill attaching railings using RSS screws

We hooked up the decrease horizontal rail throughout that higher bunk the usage of pocket holes from the bottom, in order that they’re no longer visual from the entrance. And talking of visual from the entrance – if I did it once more, I’d almost certainly make it so the ones two screw heads couldn’t be noticed. A part of us thinks it’s more or less a pleasing little element (they’re commercial taking a look and brass in colour, in order that they’re nearly like gold rivets which can be additionally visual alongside the perimeters of the ladder). But if seen at angles like the only underneath, best 2 are visual, so it seems extra random than it does from the opposite nook of the room. Lets’ve have shyed away from the ones being visual by means of screwing it into position from the bottom, in order that’s an possibility if you happen to’re going for a extra seamless glance.


diy built in wall to wall bunk beds before ladder is stained

Oh and as for the bottom of that high bunk, it’s only a few skinny 1/4″ plywood sheets that we glued and nailed into position, after which trimmed out with some primed lattice strips to hide the seam within the center. This attitude presentations extra of the way the ladder has the ones brass screws operating down the facet, so they appear lovely neat while you see all of them covered up en masse like that.


view of underside of built-in bunk beds

To not leap forward, however we idea the brass screw heads regarded even cooler as soon as the whole thing was once stained.


stained wood ladder for wall to wall bunk beds

Staining The Ladder And Railings

In reality, talking of staining – this previous weekend we had been in spite of everything ready to complete up the venture with caulk, paint (Sherwin Williams Natural White), and stain (extra on precisely what we utilized in a 2d – we nonetheless want to seal it subsequent time we’re again). If you happen to observe us on Instagram you noticed in our InstaStories that it took an even quantity of stain checking out to get a colour that was once very similar to the flooring and doorways. However after we landed at the proper colour, we taped the whole thing off and started working.


Sherry applying stain to bunk bed railing for raw wood look

The overall combine ended up being a four-step procedure:

  1. We did a coat of pre-stain wooden conditioner on the whole thing to get a extra even and not more blotchy end
  2. Sherry brushed on a coat of Minwax Herbal on all the minimize ends. The uncooked minimize ends of wooden forums generally tend to soak up WAY extra stain, making them darker in spite of everything, so we used a lighter colour on them as a substitute.
  3. Then we did a coat of Minwax Puritan Pine all over the place else the usage of a broom. As soon as it set for round 15 mins, we wiped off the surplus.
  4. In the end that, it wasn’t reasonably pink sufficient, so we did a snappy coat of Minwax Colonial Maple all over the place the usage of a rag to provide it a slight reddish solid.


assortment of Minwax stain color test pots

Regardless of being slightly bit advanced, we’re in reality proud of the way it became out. It’s no longer a really perfect fit, but it surely without a doubt feels proper inside the circle of relatives of the 100-year-old pine flooring tones. Victory! And with regards to how a lot we spent, we’d estimate it was once round $250 overall.


diy built in wall to wall bunk beds with dog on bottom bunk

Like I stated firstly, those have briefly turn out to be the children’ favourite spot in the home. And in fact, certainly one of Burger’s too. He has found out that the solar sweeps thru right here all over the day, growing a number of dog-friendly scorching spots at the mattress and flooring. He even graced us along with his presence whilst we had been snapping pics… after which promptly began grooming himself.


diy built in wall to wall bunk beds with child climbing ladder

Past the bunks, the room itself wishes a little extra paintings. We’re conserving a watch out for the fitting cloth cabinet or cupboard so as to add slightly little bit of garage (and floor space) to the other wall. Then we would possibly upload a comfortable rug, and possibly some amusing paint colour at the ceiling?


view into beach house bunk room showing empty space next to bunk bed

Ultimate Measurements For Our DIY Bunk Beds

I additionally promised ultimate measurements, so right here they’re multi functional position for you:

  • Each platforms are 81.Five x 40″ (to deal with an 80 x 38″ dual XL bed)
  • Backside bunk: Best of the platform is 10″ off the bottom, making the bed 17″ off the bottom, with 34.5″ of headroom
  • Best bunk: Best of platform is 56″ off the bottom, making the bed 63″ off the bottom, with 32.5″ of headroom
  • Ladder rungs are 18″ vast making the total ladder 21″ vast from edge to edge. Rungs are 12″ with the exception of best to best.
  • Best railing is 7″ above the bed best (5″ is needed) with a three″ hole between the 2


diy built in wall to wall bunk beds with raw wood railing and ladder

K, and in spite of everything, all of the procedure was once round 88% much less nervewracking than I believed. Mainly, kid’s play in comparison to development a deck or putting in an irrigation machine. Which is an excellent factor, as a result of our most up-to-date plans for the duplex have a identical spot for DIY bunks, so we could have two extra units of those in retailer for ourselves. Higher purchase my weight in the ones gold screws.

P.S. For extra builds & furnishings hacks we’ve performed through the years, chances are you’ll experience those posts:

*This submit incorporates associate hyperlinks*

Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap