Let me start this post with a story….
It is around 2007 maybe it was 2008, the wife and I are shopping for our (at the time) only daughter. This was going to be her first big girl bed. Being new parents we had delusions that if we spend an obscene amount of money for (what we thought was) a quality bed made out of real wood that it would last until college or longer. HAH! wish I could go back into time and slap myself. Within the first year the white bedroom set had been exposed to markers, crayons, stickers, spit, you name it this bed and dressers had it.
Fast forward a few years. We have moved form our home in Kansas to our new home in Nebraska, this bed has survived well so far and had the stains to prove it. The bed was sturdy as it should have been being made of real wood. CRACK…somehow the 50lbs 9 year old broke the bed and split the wood where the rails attach to headboard. So here I am cursing up a storm, carrying this bed to the garage to get repaired, more upset that I spent as much money on the bed and it broke. The bed was repaired and back in her room, it lasted another 2 years before it finally gave up the ghost and broke again. I wasn’t going to repair it again….that is when I decided I am going to build her a new bed. Problem is I had no time and my workshop was in a complete disarray.
Lets Fast forward again….I keep telling her I am going to build her a bed, she decided she wanted a loft bed. I was like heck yeah lets build this elaborate awesome bed….hah like I have time for that. It is March/April of 2015 now, I finally think of a design that I like and she likes as well…Another lesson for you fathers of girls…DON’T SHOW YOUR 11 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER PINTEREST, you will get an endless supply of pins from your tween daughter. This is great I have a plan, I have a design in my head, I head to Menards and pick through all their 2x6 pine to find the clearest, straightest pieces I could get. come home with 15 8ft 2 x 6 pine. I go ahead and start cutting the wood for the bed frame…done!
I go ahead and cut the legs that are going to hold the bed up off the ground, around 5ft off the ground with excess for rails. I go ahead and assemble the bedframe using my Kreg pockethole jig. Being the through person that I am and not wanting to get ahead of myself I run up to her room and grab one of the mattresses so I can do a test fit on the frame. The fit was so tight there was no way she could have ever changed her sheets…what did I do wrong. I go back over my measurements I wrote down, the paper matched was the bed was, the bed frame was 1 1/2” off…DOH!!! I forgot to take in account the width of the material on one side. Lucky for me the legs that I cut were the exact length I needed, Happy dance. I swap out the boards, test the fit again and it is perfect. I attach some 2x4 for the slats the mattress will sit on. Bed frame is Done!!!!
By this time it is full on summer, camping, vacations, pools, and BBQ get in the way of working on the bed (there was also a lot of procrastination on my part). The design I had in my head changed and I really didn’t like where I was going with the legs and how it was going to assemble. I wanted to make sure that this was going to be strong enough to hold her until at least high school, because at this point in my life I am realistic that this bed is not the last bed she will want or that I will ultimately build for her. Summer is now pretty much over, I have decided that I am going to attach the bed to the wall. This leaves me with building something for one end of the bed where she will climb in at. After a lot of pondering, drawing and…yes I’ll admit it Pinning, I came across a bookshelf that had a pretty slick design and would make a bookshelf and also function as a ladder. I show it to my daughter, she approved the design. I go out to the garage and start cutting and assembling.
Long story short, the bed is completed, installed and it doesn’t leave much clearance between her and ceiling but will be at least usable for the next few years. I don’t have any delusions that she will want another bed as she gets older. Luckily this was made with inexpensive materials that I can find another use for in the future.