How to Build a DIY Toddler Bed in 8 Simple Steps

I made a DIY toddler bed with a headboard, footboard, and cozy string lights. Have a design in mind for your DIY toddler bed frame and get started. Here are the steps I took so you can see how to build a toddler bed:

Tools and material

  • 1x2 lumber (for headboard, footboard, and top rail)
  • Dowels
  • Wood glue
  • 2x4 lumber (for bed posts and frame)
  • 1x4 lumber (for mattress support)
  • Sandpaper (various grits)
  • Wood stain
  • Favorite fabric
  • String lights
  • Drill
  • 1/2 inch drill bit
  • Screws
  • Screwdriver
Measuring the wood pieces
Cutting the wood pieces

1. Pre-cut pieces

Measure and precut all the necessary pieces according to the toddler bed design.

Drilling holes into the frame

2. Assemble the headboard and footboard

Assembling the headboard
Building the toddler bed
Making the top rail
  • Drill 1/2-inch holes into the frame and each 1x2 piece of lumber that makes up the headboard and footboard.
  • Apply wood glue to the holes and insert dowels.
  • Connect the pieces by joining the dowels into the corresponding holes, creating a sturdy headboard and footboard.
Attaching the 1x2 top rail

3. Attach top rail

Use a 1x2 piece of lumber for the top rail. Attach it securely to the headboard and footboard using screws and wood glue.

Sanding and staining
Sanding and staining the wood

4. Sand and stain

Sand all the wooden surfaces to smooth out any rough edges. You can apply wood stain according to the manufacturer's instructions to achieve your desired finish. I used a light, whitewash-style finish.

Assembling the frames out of 2x4s

5. Assemble frame

  • Use 2x4 lumber for the bed posts and frame. Assemble the frame by connecting the posts with horizontal and vertical pieces.
Attaching the 1x2 on both sides
  • Attach 1x2s on both sides of the frame to enhance stability.
Installing the mattress support

6. Install mattress support

Place 1x4s over the top of the frame to create a supportive base for the mattress. Secure them in place with screws.

Attaching the top

7. Attach top

Place the assembled headboard and footboard at the ends of the bed frame. Connect them securely using screws, ensuring a strong and stable structure.

Adding textiles and string lights

8. Personalize with fabric and string lights

I added a personal touch by attaching a sheer navy blue curtain to the headboard and footboard. This can be done with a staple gun or adhesive, depending on your preference.

I added string lights around the bed frame and draped them over the headboard to create a cozy and inviting atmosphere.

Homemade toddler bed
DIY toddler bed

DIY toddler bed

I have successfully built a custom DIY toddler bed with a headboard, footboard, and charming string lights. Feel free to personalize your toddler bed further to match your style and preferences.

Please share with us in the comments if you plan to build a toddler bed or if you have already and show us what it looks like.

Follow @gatheratthebooths on TikTok for more DIY ideas.

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