How about a “Tent Bed” for you child?!!!
Total cost was only $53.91!!
My daughter has been bugging me time and time again to get her a bunk bed. It’s not really the bunk bed she wanted, but rather a way to make a tent on the bottom part and she wanted to be able to sleep on the top part!
First off, she is 7 years old and I don’t see her wanting to use a bunk bed for more than a couple of years. With that being said, I wanted to come up with a way for her to enjoy a “tent” and still sleep on the top part!
I wrote down her double bed dimensions and off to the local hardware store to see what I could come up with. I started of in the gardening section and saw all of the beautiful plants placed on cinder blocks stacked 4 high with a very heavy mesh metal top to hold them all. I wiggled it a bit and it didn’t move at all! I was impressed! Ding, Ding! I had an idea!!! Why not use cinder blocks stacked 4 high to make a “raised bed” so she can enjoy a tent area underneath it! So off to the lumber area I went!
I spoke with a professional in Lumber and he suggested I use a Floor underlayment piece of plywood. It was extremely thick, sturdy and smooth too (so you didn’t have to worry about splinters).
Here’s a list of the supplies I needed to create a raised bed:
- 1 sheet of plywood (bed dimensions are: Twin 39″ x 75″ or Full/Double 54″ x 75″) Cost: $17.93
- 16 cinder blocks to stack them 4 high (12 for 3 high) Cost: $1.48 each total: $23.68
- Staple gun for upholstery and staples Cost: staple gun $9.47, staples $2.83 total: $12.30
- 1 king size flat sheet (I already had this)
- Scissors (I already had this)
- tape measure (I already had this)
- Mattress (I already had this)
- Stool for climbing onto the bed (I already had this)
First, I stopped off at my local hardware store and grabbed all the supplies I needed above! I didn’t do any cutting because hardware store will cut the wood for me for free! I suggest cutting the wood a bit smaller than your actual bed size so you don’t hit the wood when trying to climb on your bed. For example, the plywood sheets only come 48 inches wide and my bed was 54 inches wide. This was perfect because it allows the bed to hang over the wood just a bit and not be shown at all.
I stacked the cinder blocks 4 high on each corner of the bed. (Tip: I stacked the holes facing out so when under the bed she could use those as shelves and put her toys in the cinder holes (cubby holes)! She loves that idea) Next, I placed the plywood sheet on top of the cinder blocks. I ended up doing this project solo. I leveraged the plywood on the corner of the end cinder blocks and slide it over the top. It would be much easier with another person to help lift the plywood though 😉
Next, I also leveraged the full size bed on the end of the cinder blocks and plywood, lifted it from the bottom and pushed it across the top sliding it into place. At this point, I ended up getting on the bed to see if it would hold an adult persons weight and to test if it was wobbly too. There is no way I would let my daughter sleep on this if I thought for one minute it was gonna fall. Safety first! It held perfectly so I let her get on it too! You can see how happy she is in photo #3! lol… It may also be important for me to point out that this bed is pushed all the way up to the back wall and against the window wall so I wonder if that is helping it be as secure as it is.
Next, I grabbed the staple gun I just purchased for upholstery and grabbed a king size flat sheet. I measured the sheet to hang just right from the top of the plywood to the bottom of the floor and adding an extra inch for the staple room as seen in photo #4. In order to make this a “no sewing” project I simply snipped the scissors once at the point I measured and torn the sheets apart. This made a straight line without me having to worry if I was cutting it right! I stapled the sheet all the way around the bed but left a portion open in the middle for her to easily go in and out of. I ended up taking the top part of the flat sheet (you know the extra folded over piece) and made a small decorative flap for the front opening of the bed tent. I think it turned out pretty cute, don’t you?!
Once the stapling was complete I put the mattress back on top! I didn’t stop there though… I ended up using some string lights for underneath the tent too. Oh my goodness, I think she liked the lights and the shelves the best!!!
Now looking at how high the bed was when I finished it make me a bit nervous about her falling off the bed. I insisted she have a protective railing (just in case!).
Finally, I added a small one inch full/double size memory foam to the bottom tent part. This is not shown in the photo though. There are two reasons I added the memory foam. First, because it seems she is spending a great deal of time reading and playing in her tent and I wanted it to be bed-like. Next, because the memory foam is just as big as her bed it curls up on top of the bottom part of the cinder blocks. I really like that part because if you hit your leg or arm on them, they can scratch you easily. In fact, if this is for a smaller child (under age 6) I would suggest wrapping these cynder blocks in a soft felt like material, foam, cardboard or batting to protect the little ones. I could see you getting really creative if you needed to cover them too. Imagine using a huge foam poster board and painting it with chalk paint! Instant chalkboard in your tent! Just an idea!
Final photo to include the safety rail that I insisted on! Hey, you can never be too safe!
I hope you enjoyed this project as much as I did! I am another step closer to Keeping it Simple and “Taking Back the American Dream!”