Week 3 of the One Room Challenge is here and we have built in bunk beds! Sort of. Are they 100% complete? Not exactly, but they are built! This week definitely came faster than last week! We are working in real time now, and I am feeling the pressure! If you missed the week one, or week two, check those out to see all the plans and progress. As for this week, I am just glad I made it without becoming a true crime story like last time. So far we ripped out the carpet, scraped the popcorn ceilings, painted, installed new floors, and built bunk beds. Not too bad, huh? So do you wanna see those bunk beds?
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As a reminder, this is what the room looked like when we started. Dated popcorn ceilings, dirty carpet, and a fan that I was SO over!
I should probably mention, we have never built bunk beds before, not that most people have, although we did build our bed. And while we have tackled our fair share of bigger projects, like the deck, cable railing, and sofas, this was by far the most complicated build we have done from scratch. That’s right, I dreamt this up and figured out how to build it. Some people call me stubborn, I say determined. Naturally, we started with a large pile of wood.
Since this room started out with a queen sized bed, we also had to swap the mattress for two twins. I found these at Costco and I must admit, I think they are more comfortable than our bed! But truthfully, I can’t wait to sleep on these for a night to really test them out.
DIY Built in Bunk Beds
I definitely plan to write a full tutorial on these built in bunk beds, but because of time and ALL the other projects I have planned, I will give you the cliff notes version for now. We started by building the platforms for the top and bottom bunks with 2x4s. And can I just say, I severely underestimated the amount of screws we would need. Three boxes later and I should have just bought the economy pack. But there was no way I would need 300+ screws….wrong. Lesson learned.
With the platforms built, we built a wall for the head of the bed. Now I will admit, this did not have to be this complicated, but I insisted on headboard niches. There was a lot of mathing that went on here, but I think it will all work out. I should probably also mention there were several trips to the attic because the ceiling joists did not align with the placement of the walls. Of course not, why would they? But we wanted to make sure these remained built in bunk beds, you know?
Once the first wall frame was secured in place to the back wall, side wall, and ceiling, we attached the bottom frame. I used these screws to attach all the framing to one another, these for attaching to most of the studs, these for where we stacked 2x4s and and a few extra long fasteners for attaching the headboard wall to the ceiling.
Then I slatted the bottom frame with 1x4s and the nail gun to support the mattress.
Naturally we had to have a family snuggle session to test this out 🙂
Next, we built the second wall for the bunk beds. This wall was a bit less complicated, but I did decide to notch out two of the 2x4s that would act as a support for the top bunk. This may not have been necessary, but it made me feel better since we are building this for adults.
The part I worried about most was attaching the platform for the top bunk bed, but surprisingly, it went fairly smooth! We used our highly scientific method of taping a four foot level to the 2×4 to make sure it was level and didn’t fall while we were installing. I also clamped the right side of the top bunk frame to the second wall once we had it in place. This way Barry only had to hold one section while I screwed instead of the whole thing.
If you want to see the video of this, it is saved on the 2021 Fall ORC highlight in my Instagram stories.
PSA. During the bunk bed build, I decided I wanted a new tape measure with all the numbers marked. I stumbled upon this one. I had no clue what “center scale” meant, but quickly learned that it gives you the exact center measurement of what you are measuring! Mind blown. This was SO helpful when I was lining up the niches. I simply marked the center of the frame and the center of the niche and lined them up. Easy peasy. So in case you didn’t know, now you do 🙂
Finishing out the built in bunk beds, in my opinion, is the most tedious task, and clearly I am not actually done with that, haha! We decided to use shiplap and pre-primed pine. Honestly, its a miracle all of this made it up for these photos because I was cutting it darn close! But you get the general idea.
I still have to fill ALL the holes, caulk, paint and build the stairs. I have a feeling this will be an eleventh hour kind of thing, but we will see. You can catch all the behind the scenes in my Instagram stories. PS. Marvin is already enjoying the new bunk beds, although he is confused as to how he gets to the top bunk 🙂
I cannot wait to finish these out and add all the bedding! We will be working on Barry’s closet next week. Spoiler alert, it includes a trip to my mother land, IKEA!!!! Fingers crossed we only have to go once! Join me again next week to see how the rest of our makeover is coming along!
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Don’t forget to stop by the One Room Challenge to check out all the featured designers and other guest participants. There are SO many talented folks creating and making over spaces, its basically like binge watching HGTV 😉