The time was approaching…my baby girl was getting bigger and we would no longer need the crib anymore….NOOOOOOO! 😩 I wasn’t reeeaaaddyyyy! I also wasn’t ready to shove out big bucks for a new big girl bed either. We didn’t do the toddler bed progression with my oldest daughter. She went from the crib to a queen bed . But, her queen bed was our hand-me-down after we upgraded to a king in our master bedroom. This time around, we’d either have to buy or build. So, I built!
I’d known since last year (2016) that this chevron detail reclaimed wood looking bed I’d seen on Jen Woodhouse’s website would be the bed I’d build once we upgraded baby girl from crib to queen.
I procrastinated as long as I could. I was in denial that my baby was getting bigger. But, her 3rd birthday was approaching, and it would be my gift to her, so I reluctantly got started.
I used Jen Woodhouse’s post as inspiration and used her plans to get the queen size bed measurements. I would love to give you all the details here, but they aren’t my plans to distribute. I printed them last year when they were free, but Jen has now added a fee to retrieve the plans. So, to get more detail on measurements, refer to her website for the post with the plans attached. I would love to give you all measurements here, but wouldn’t feel comfortable since they are Jen’s originally.
But, I do feel comfortable showing you the process and how I built it! So, here goes…!
I started with the headboard since that would mostly likely take the longest. After you assemble the base of the headboard (attaching the plywood backing to the 2×4 frame), the chevron detail using 1x3s is next. Split the plywood into four equal quadrants and work in one at a time. This part is all cut and measure as you go. Jen has suggested measurement in her plans, but she also points out its best to not follow those. No two pieces will be uniform. Needless to say, I got really comfortable with my speed square during this process.
Once you get going and get a rhythm, it gets easier. During the cut and measure step, I did not secure the pieces to the plywood. This step is just cutting the pieces and placing them in their spots.
Once all pieces are cut and placed on the headboard base, sand, sand, sand! Even though the pieces aren’t secured to the base it will be easy to sand because the chevron pieces are keeping each other in place.
After sanding, I vacuumed the sawdust from the plywood base and wiped it down with a damp cloth. I also wiped each chevron piece with a damp cloth.
Tip: When vacuuming and wiping down the plywood and the chevron pieces, do it one quandrant at a time so that you don’t get your pieces mixed up.
After all of the sawdust is cleaned away, it’s time to stain. First I used Minwax’s wood conditioner on each board. I always use wood conditioner before any staining job because it helps the finish look smooth and not blotchy. Then, I used Minwax’s special walnut, weathered oak, classic gray, ebony and for the white Valspar’s coconut milk paint color. I stained and painted my pieces one at a time, taking each piece away from its spot on the headboard before applying. I did this to avoid the different color stains bleeding over onto other boards.
I knew what patterned I wanted and knew I wanted the “main pattern” to be black and white. So after I stained that, there was no rhyme or reason on how I stained the remaining pieces. Some of them are stained with one color, others multiples. On some the stain was left on for a long time, others wiped off immediately.
After the chevron detail was stained and painted, it was time to stain the frame. I used a combination of Minwax’s special walnut and weathered oak. Quadrant by quadrant, I removed the chevron pieces, taped off the plywood near the frame and applied stain. Taping off the plywood probably wasn’t necessary since it would be hidden anyway, but…I just blame my type A-ish, OCD-ish personality lol.
After the stain dried, I glued all pieces in its place and this is how it looked! Love!!
Now, the side rails and footboard. Again, refer to Jen Woodhouse’s plans for precise measurements but, these were the easiest part of the build. You just build the side rail frame with plywood and 2x4s, cut 1x3s at various lengths along the rail…
And attach with wood glue to achieve the reclaimed wood look. I also stained the side rails and foot board with a combination of Minwax’s special walnut and weathered oak, same color combo as the headboard frame.
To finish it off, I applied 3 coats of the General Finishes Arm-R-Seal oil and urethane protective topcoat I got from Amazon. This was my first time using this and I really like it! The only thing I would change is to use a sponge brush to apply instead of a rag or cloth like the directions said. I used a staining rag for the first two coats and didn’t like how the finish wasn’t that smooth. But, the last coat I used a sponge brush and it came out smoother.
Now that the headboard and side rails were done it was time to assemble the pieces together. To make it easier for setup and take down in the future, I installed these bed rail brackets I found on Amazon on the side rails and footboard. They were about $11 for all for pieces with hardware included when I bought them.
One of the foot rails..
Left side rail
Once the rails were attached, I added the support piece in the middle and mattress slats. And done!
Upgraded big girl room for my baby girl!