The Ultimate Children's Design Resource

DIY: How to Make a Pallet Bed

I wanted to share with you my latest DIY project—how to make your own pallet bed. Adding baby #3 into the mix put us in a pickle that required some rearranging/redesigning. Bunking up the two older kiddos made the most sense; that way the upcoming arrival would get his own pad. Even though it was quite a bit of work since I am halfway through my pregnancy, it was so much fun to dream up and watch this project evolve.

Our oldest has been in a twin bed for quite some time, so our first instinct was to add another twin bed, but we ran out of real estate fast. Bunk beds, a common, small space solution, wouldn’t work for us since our oldest only turned three a few months ago. Instead, I looked for an “in between” sized bed, and it turns out IKEA happens to have a mattress, the Vyssa Vinka, in just the right size—smaller than a twin, bigger than a toddler bed and big enough for a few years of growth.

With such a specialty-sized mattress, finding the perfect frame was going to be a challenge. When I realized I wasn’t going to find the exact idea I had in my head, I knew I had to get creative and start this little DIY project. I did some research and decided I wanted a platform style bed using wooden pallets on casters. Unfortunately, finding a pallet that isn’t in need of some stray nail removal, major sanding and general TLC would not prove easy, so I decided it would be best to make my own pallets (material list at end of post).

Since all of the boards were pre-cut, the first step was a light sand, prime and paint.

Next, I laid out all of the pieces. I first attached the 4″ blocks to one end of the (3) 64″ 2 x 6 boards. Then the (3) 64″ boards were attached on each end with wood screws to the 28″ 1 x 4 boards. The  remainder (9) 28″ 1 x 4 were evenly spaced out and screwed into place. This step was repeated on the bottom.

We filled all of the screw holes with wood filler and then sanded.

Next, we attached the (4) casters to the bottom side and applied a final coat of paint.

We placed the beds in the corner in an L-shape to create their new sleep/lounge area—I was two boards short on one bed so it is almost complete.

How to Make a Pallet Bed - Project Nursery

The room still needs quite a bit of work. Stay tuned in the upcoming weeks for more DIY Projects: Headboard Tutorial, Decorating Tutorial and then…the final room reveal!

Materials for each bed platform:
(Wood was cut for me at my local Home Depot)
(3) 2 x 6 – 64″L
(22) 1 x 4 – 28″ (11 boards for the top and 11 for the bottom)
(3) 1 x 6 – 4″ blocks
(4) Casters – I got mine at Ikea
Wood Screws
Wood Filler

Remember to measure the mattress you are working with and adjust your wood sizes as necessary. I was working with the Vyssa Vinka mattress, which measures 27.5″ x 63″.

Have a DIY project of your own that you’d like to share with us?
Email with details and pictures.

  • andrea

    oh my goodness what a great project!!

  • Carrie ~ A Sweet Spot: Home

    That is darling! What a great space saver, still plenty of play room on the floor!

  • Christina

    super cute!!!!!

  • Angela Willis

    Hi! What a great project! EXACTLY what I need for my son’s room…
    I have a question… he is getting really big and I think that he would need more support than just the wooden frame., Do you think that the frame you built would hold a box spring?

  •, vicki mehaffey

    Awesome!!! Does Ikea also sell the linens for the mattresses there? ALso for the backboard on this, did you attach to the wall? I love this!!!

  • Maureen Anders

    This is genius, Rebecca! LOVE

  • Rebecca

    Vicki…IKEA sells the fitted sheets and mattress pads and I have tutorial coming soon that I did for the quilts, but twin comforters could work. The headboard are attached to the wall…that DIY is coming SOON!!! (:

    vicki mehaffey,

  • Rebecca

    Angela Willis,

    Hey Angela…here is the reply I left on FB (:

    Hi Angela…typically with a platform style bed you wouldn’t need a box spring. Many times they use a wooden slat style support so that is what I tried to duplicate. I paid a little more for solid pine 1×4 boards but it is solid!!! -especially with the center support (; hope that helps!!

  • MJ

    This is FABULOUS! Can you give me an approximate finished height (including the mattress) for these? I’d love to make something like this for our playroom….to work as a guest room in a pinch!

  • Heidi

    What an amazing project! I can’t wait to see the rest!

  • Ruthy

    What a awesome idea. I am going to try this. The colors great with the patterns.

  • Lisa @ HR Creative Design Studio

    Okay, I totally need to do this project for my son’s room! Love the colors!

  • Vena

    I absolutely adore this project! I’m excited for the follow ups(Headboard/Quilts)! Great Job..i’m inspired!

  • Lindsey

    UGH!!! I just love this, from the colors to the wheels…everything it just so fun! I want one!

  • Kristen M.

    I love this idea. It would work great as a kid’s “couch” in a family room too.

  • Amaya

    It turned out really nice! I love the color you used. I cannot wait for your Part 2!

  • Stina

    You are brilliant!! This is amazing.

  • Beckie

    So… how much would you say the entire bed-making project cost you (per bed)? Just wondering how the cost of this compares to buying a new bed.

    Looks AWESOME, by the way! Wanna make ME a set??? lol.

  • Erica

    This is a great idea. I plan to file it away for the near future. I do have a question, how does it work with both your two sleeping so close together? Do they keep each other awake?

  • Ashley

    I’d love to know where you got the headboard fabric and that orange polk-a-dot pillow?! LOVE!

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  • Julia

    Love the idea, but I was also wondering what the paint color is on the walls?

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  • Lee Ann Dover

    Love these beds. I’m working on my set now. I got the casters at Ikea, too. Can you tell me how you attached yours? I don’t think the bolt that is on them will be long enough to come out the other side of a 1×4. Did you drill a large hole and attach with a nut?

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  • Aimee

    How much did all of the wood cost?

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  • Alex Hulme

    absolutely love this, myself and my girlfriend are attempting to build our own l shaped sofa for our new house! Just wondering how you upholstered the mattresses? They look great!

  • Beth_PN

    Hi Alex, Rebecca actually used these as beds for her boys, so I think the mattresses are just made up with bedding. Good luck on your sofa!

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  • Yaz

    How much was the whole project both beds plus the headboards?

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