How to Make a Bedside Table for a Bunk Bed

Written by katherine kally
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With minimal building skills and a few supplies from your local home-improvement store, you can easily make a bedside table that will work for a bunk bed. Our example will yield a 68-inch-tall-by-22-inch-wide-by-18-inch-deep bedside table with three shelves for additional storage. You can paint or stain your table to coordinate with the room's decor.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 2 68-inch-by-18-inch-by-2-inch wood boards
  • 2 22-inch-by-18-inch-by-2-inch wood boards
  • 3 18-inch-by-18-inch-by-2-inch wood boards
  • 2 68-inch-by-2-inch decorative trim pieces
  • 2 22-inch-by-2-inch decorative trim pieces
  • 3 22-inch-by-18-inch-by-2-inch wood boards
  • Light-grade sandpaper
  • Hammer
  • Finishing nails
  • Wood glue
  • Wood putty
  • Putty knife
  • Primer
  • Paint and paintbrushes (or stain and sponges)
  • Polyurethane
  • 20 small "L" brackets
  • Measuring tape
  • Wood screws
  • Screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Attach the decorative trim to the front edges of each wood piece. Run a bead of wood glue along the edge, and then secure the trim to the board with finishing nails. Cover the nails with wood putty and let it dry.

  2. 2

    Lightly sand both sides of each piece of wood. Remove all of the sanding debris with a damp cloth. Prime and paint or stain both sides of the wood. It's easier to finish the wood on a flat surface than to try to paint inside the assembled table. Paint-grade wood and MDF is less expensive than hardwoods you can stain, but priming and painting can take longer than applying stain. Whichever finish you select for you bedside table, end with a coat of polyurethane for shine and protection. Let the pieces dry completely before assembling.

  3. 3

    Lay one of the 68-inch wood boards on a flat work surface. Attach one "L" bracket in each corner, flush with the top and side edges of the board. One set of brackets will hold the top of your bunk bed table and one set will attach to the bottom board. Place the brackets accordingly, with the flat side up on one end and the flat side down on the other.

  4. 4

    Measure 17 inches from the top end and place one "L" bracket on each side of the board to hold the first shelf. Measure 17 inches from the first shelf brackets and attach the brackets for the second shelf. Measure 17 inches again and attach the brackets for the third shelf.

  5. 5

    Repeat Steps 3 and 4 on the remaining 68-inch wood board.

  6. 6

    Attach the 22-inch boards to either end of the 68-inch boards, one for the top and one for the bottom. Insert and attach the three shelves to the "L" brackets inside the bedside table.

Tips and warnings

  • Secure the bedside table to the wall or the bunk bed with "L" brackets to keep it from toppling over.
  • Paint or stain the wood pieces for your bedside table in a well-ventilated area.

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