DIY Twin Loft Bed…for under $100!

Dec 30, 2013 | Baby and Kids, DIY, Lifestyle

loft bed

If any of you have been following this blog for at least 2.3 seconds, you probably know that I'm not much of a DIY'er. I just don't have the genes for it, really. So since it's crunch week and all (FBC is only 5 days away! AHH!) I thought I'd enlist the help of my friend Michelle to show us an INCREDIBLE loft bed that they made. With their bare hands. Without a catalogue or credit card. By themselves. In one weekend…for around $100! It blows my mind, really.
Take it away Michelle!

I am happy to be guest posting for FCF today!

Lucky for me, and for our budget, my husband loves to dabble in DIY furniture and basic woodworking. Thanks to sites like, it is easier than ever to create your own custom pieces for a fraction of the price you’d pay in retail. We recently found, and fell in love with, her plans for a Twin Loft Bed and I wanted to share the finished product and a little insight on how we achieved it (see the official bed plans HERE).

My husband made our oldest daughter this cute little Toddler bed (in a few hours…really) when she turned 2.

Toddler Bed

She just turned 5, entered kindergarten, and is looking and feeling quite grown-up so we decided it was time to move to a twin bed.

If you have tight space like us, this type of bed is a great option because of the loft factor and usable space underneath. Plus, it is super high on the “cool factor” radar for your average 5 year old and tons of fun to play….and sleep in!

DIY Loft Bed

Here’s a pic of the finished product. Believe it or not, this project was completed start to finish in 1 weekend. All of the furniture we attempt is much easier than it looks and we always look for plans with complete step by step instructions as well as a complete supply list. Since this is a frugality blog, I’m sure you’re wondering about cost. Paint and materials were around $100.

If you’re new to DIY we have 3 basic recommendations for essential tools to get you started.

1) Circular Saw

2) Drill, preferably cordless, we recommend this one.

3) Kreg Jig–this allows you to make nails and screws invisible…my husband loves it. A lot.

I contacted Rockwell tools and asked them if they would provide us this drill to use in conjunction with this post after significant research and our old, high-end drill battery kicking the bucket on us. We were shocked when we went to our local hardware store to learn that a replacement battery for our drill cost THE SAME AMOUNT as we paid for the drill itself. Whaaattt??! We’d only used it for 2 years–that was going to add up very quickly.


Enter Rockwell Tools Drill.

Upon research I learned that they offer a lifetime battery replacement program. Sold. That feature alone will make this drill pay for itself over and over again…we use our drill a lot 🙂

For the lifetime battery replacement program, you just have to make sure it is 1) an eligible item 2) register it within 60 days of purchase. I had some trouble registering my tool using Rockwell’s online system and had to go old fashioned and mail in an actual card which was a bit of a pain but worth it in the long run. If you have to go the snail-mail route, I recommend calendering a reminder on your phone to touch base with the company after a few weeks and make sure they received the card and that you are good to go.

Puppet Show

Okay, back to the bed. I “fun”ified our bed by adding a couple features. I converted the dead space under the landing to be a puppet theatre. It is super simple. I used some scrap fabric I had on hand and appliqued a theatre mask (google searched for a free clip art image) onto the front. I cut mine out using my silhouette cameo and flocked heat transfer material but you could easily cut it out as well. Just ironed it on. I was lazy so I just serged around the edges of the fabric and folded the top down and sewed a sleeve so I could insert the tension rod.

Same thing for the curtains. The blue fabric is just a pillow case. It is hard to tell from the pic, but that tension rod is set back in about 6 inches or so….the kids sit behind it and just put their hands up between the blue piece and the front piece. Eventually I am going to add a moon and stars to one side of the pillowcase and a sun on the other so you can rotate it between night and day 🙂 You can find super cute (and cheap!) finger puppets here.

finger puppets

I noticed on many of the brag posts on Ana’s site, that several people converted this space to be book storage which is another great idea. We have this nook between the end of the bed and the closet where my husband build book storage onto the wall (see below) so I wanted to go another route.

loft bed

The simplest feature we added, and biggest hit of all, are the bars to swing from underneath. They are hard to see in the pic. We installed two bars, one for my 2 year old and one for the 5 year old. My youngest has to use a stool to reach her bar but she LOVES swinging on it. I found them at IKEA for $10 each. This is obviously not their intended purpose so install at your own risk…they seem very sturdy and safe for our family 🙂

Lighted DIY Loft Bed

Lights around the perimeter makes for a fun night light.

It has been such a fun update to our daughter's shared room–give it a try, you won't regret it!

* * * * * * *

Thanks for sharing Michelle, and happy building for all you DIY'ers out there!





  1. Lillith

    Such a fun, cute bed Michelle and so fun to see a current pic of your girls. I bought a used bunkbed on KSL and it took me over a week to put it together by myself and you built this from scratch in less time. I am impressed. I also love when people say they are so lazy because… and then list ten things I have no idea how to do. You are awesome.

  2. Tara

    Where can I could your instructions and shopping list for the fun bed project..

  3. Zoe

    Can you tell me what plans you used to build this bed? I found something *similar* on Ana White, but it was not this exactly and I like this design better.

    Thank you.


  4. kelly

    I love the swing bar idea! What is the name of those bars so I can find them at IKEA?

  5. Barth Fantastic Assembly

    Such a cute loft bed flat pack hack! I love how happy your children look. To take a regular IKEA bed and transform it in such a fun playground is more than amazing. For not being a DIY-er you’ve obviously done an outstanding bunk bed montage there! Without a shadow of a doubt inspiring! You don’t see flat pack assembly hacked like that on a regular basis. I think that IKEA designers would be proud and IKEA assemblers like me a bit jealous. Setting-up the extra space to work as storage, the montage of lights and the swing are simply genius! You could totally be a fantastic furniture assembly pro! :)) Once again – awesome! Made my day


  6. Pat

    PLEASE modify your bed and add another horizontal board at the top of the platform. I built this bed too, and had a near-tragedy due to my son lying down on the platform and going feet-first through that opening. His torso fit through but his head did not, and he was left dangling with his head entrapped. [in your photo of the girls hanging from the bars, the opening just to the left of the cutie in pink, about armpit level] Ensure that all gaps are either smaller than 3″ or larger than 9″. I did notify Ana White and they did change the plans now. Blessings!

  7. TT

    After falling in love with this idea & design my husband and I made the same one this weekend. It was a lot of hard work but or daughter absolutely loves it, thanks for sharing!!

  8. Beth

    What a waste of my time to your read this!! all you did to help was provide a link to
    –You gave no tips on anything you did different in building it or if you changed anything from ana whites plans. I guess your just trying to make money on your ads….. just post you made a bed from anawhite and be done with it you dope!!!

  9. anna

    I would love something like this for myself since I’m in a studio. Twin XL and not wobbly like the one Nomad bed I have now grrrr. Low loft bed, about 15 – 18 inches of the floor, made of hard wood and not poplar. I am unfortunately am not very handy in a way of building beds.

  10. Jasmine Martin

    This is awesome! but no details or instructions or steps in how-to? ?
    My daughter turns five in 6 months and her dinky rooms needs a loft bed which I want to convert from a tein we have already


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