How to Build a Castle Bed for a Child

Written by karen frisch
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It can be a real challenge to get children to go to bed at the end of the day. Entice them into bed by surrounding them with their favourite things. Make your little princess her very own castle bed. Made of pine, the bed features a headboard shaped like the front of a castle with pink satin padding. If your child is young enough to require side rails, you can add two narrow wooden horses along the sides of the bed. The project requires advanced skill in woodworking, but the results are well worth the effort.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Pine
  • Jigsaw
  • Hammer
  • Nails
  • L-shaped brackets
  • Mattress
  • Pink satin
  • Pink polyester
  • Gold lace
  • Pink and white paint
  • Gemstones
  • Hot glue gun

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  1. 1

    Decide whether you want a twin or toddler bed. A twin bed will be 80-by-40 inches, and the headboard will stand 40 inches. The side rails will be 15 inches from the floor. A toddler bed will be 54-by-31 inches and have a 30-inch tall headboard. The bed will be made from pine, and the horse side panels will be 1.5 inches thick to give them strength. Use a standard twin mattress or crib mattress for the toddler bed. Design the bed by measuring the appropriate size for the child's room.

  2. 2

    From the pine piece you purchase, cut a straight simple footboard, side railings, and three slats to hold the mattress. Attach the footboard to the side railings using nails and L-shaped brackets. Add the slats to support the mattress. Paint the footboard pink using acrylic paint.

  3. 3

    Cut the castle headboard out of pine as in the illustration using a jigsaw. Cut flat towers at either end and turrets in between. Sketch the castle entrance with a wide arching line on the bottom centre of the headboard. It is rounded in the illustration but can be rectangular if you prefer. The child's pillow will be placed in front of this archway or opening.

    How to Build a Castle Bed for a Child
    Castle headboard
  4. 4

    Cushion the entire front of the headboard by covering it with foam or quilt batting. Cover the stuffing with one 45-inch piece of pink satin, tacking or stapling the fabric to the back of the headboard, except for the arched area. Keep the top layer of satin padding for the castle entrance separate by cutting a smaller piece of fabric to fit.

  5. 5

    Cover the archway with pink satin, tucking it in among the rest of the headboard covering and tacking it to the wood. When this fabric is applied over the thick quilt batting, it will automatically form a separate section. When the castle entrance is in place, hang two thin drapes of pink polyester from the top of the arch. Outline the archway with gold lace. Secure the headboard to the rest of the bed frame.

  6. 6

    Paint two narrow wooden dowels pink. Glue or staple pink triangle-shaped polyester banners along the sides of the dowels. Nail the dowels to the castle headboard to attach and display the castle's banners. Add gold lace along the edges of the two towers at either end of the headboard.

  7. 7

    Make two side rails by carving 1.5-inch thick wooden horses as in the illustration. Make the horses about 25 inches tall at the ears. Secure them to the straight railing underneath. Paint the horses in a colour chosen by the child. Decorate them by hot gluing on gemstone eyes and adding other fabric detailing. Use the gold lace from the headboard to make the horses' bridles.

    How to Build a Castle Bed for a Child
    Horse side railings

Tips and warnings

  • There's no limit to the detail you can add to the castle bed. Use your imagination.

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