“Did I read that right? A dog bed?” Yes, you read right! We built a bedframe with a hideaway dog bed. Why? Because I need the best of both worlds! I need Sarabi & Jack to sleep nice and close to me, but also want my room to look clean and tidy. This has always seemed impossible, as they have giant beds. Eventually, I came up with the idea for a hideaway drawer for their beds!

 Yes, Jack is half the size of Sarabi, but he needs a bed just as big or he’ll steal hers. 

I didn’t think it would be hard to find a bed frame with a large drawer at the end, but it turns out I was wrong. Most bed frames have their drawers on the side, and the few I did find with a drawer at the end would not support Sarabi alone at 100lbs and definitely wouldn’t be able to support both pups. In the end, we decided to make our own! We had a look at a few beds with drawers and roughly based our build on these.

I’d like to say I had a solid plan of attack when starting this project, but that would be a lie. The only things I really knew for sure before we went to look at materials were:

  1. We needed a drawer that would be around 4′ by 6′ to fit both dog beds.
  2. The drawer would need to be on casters rather than a side mount slide to be strong enough to support both dogs.
  3. I wanted the sides of the bed frame to come up around the bed (it’s hard to fit sheets deep enough to fit the thickness of our mattress, and it bugs me when you can see it peaking through. This way the bottom half will be covered even if the sheets slide up!)

The rest of the plan came together after a trip to Home Depot to check out the costs of the materials we needed. In addition to the materials listed below, we also needed a few different lengths of screws, wood glue, and nails for the nail gun. For tools, we used a table saw, circular saw, compound miter saw, compressor, nail gun, cordless drill, and palm sander.

Materials Purchased

1x3x8 Pine x 4: $2.60/each = $10.40

2x3x8 Pine x 12: $3.10/each = $37.20

3/4x20x96 Pine Shelving x 3: $64.20/each = $192.60

3/4x49x97 MDF x 2: $42.20/each = $84.40

3 inch swivel caster x 5″ $7.99/each = $39.95 (on sale, normally they are $13.99)

1.5 inch swivel caster x 8: $2.99/each = #23.92

Total cost $407.89 (with 5% GST included)

There are definitely some ways you could make this more cost effective! One thing we did was buy the casters at Princess Auto, as they were more than double the price at Home Depot. Instead of using the pine shelving for the sides, you could use a cheaper board and glue them together. As well, if you aren’t going to have 140lbs of dog in the drawer, you could swap out the mdf for plywood and use cheaper casters. The 3 inch casters hold up to 180lbs and I know the mdf won’t warp, so the cost was worth the longevity of the drawer for us.

Once we had all the materials, we measured everything and started to cut it all to size (or so I thought!). The 2x3x8 boards were used to create a base for our bed to sit on, and to add some stabilizers to the bottom of the frame to help hold the pine shelving in place. Then the 1x3x8’s were placed horizontally on top as slats to create extra support for our mattress (see below photo). We used the shelving to create the sides and drawer fronts and the MDF to build the insides of the drawers.

Please think about how you are attaching your boards together before starting to cut your wood! I forgot to account for the sideboards sitting inside of the end board (see below). This meant taking our entire base apart to recut all of the support boards 1.5″ shorter. This one little mistake cost us a lot of time! Luckily, it didn’t cost us any more in materials, but if I’d drawn out my plan, I may have saved us a lot of hassle.

Building Process

  1. Measure your mattress and dog beds
  2. Cut the 2x3x8 pine boards to create a square base for mattress to sit on
    We cut the corners at a 45 degree angle, but they didn’t fit perfectly together because of a slight bend in the wood. If we were to do it over, we would probably cut these straight instead. I also added a single vertical piece to sit in the middle of the mattress, as well as corner joints for extra support
  3. Cut the slats to the width of inner frame
    These should sit horizontally across the square base
  4. Cut the side boards
    Remember to account for how these will be joined together when you’re measuring!
  5. Cut the drawer fronts out of the side boards
    This was tricky with the tools we had, but lucky for me, John has a very steady hand and was able to do this with our circular saw.
  6. Cut MDF for the drawer bottoms, side, and back panels
    Make a drawing of your MDF piece and plan your cuts to make sure nothing is wasted. We did this and it saved us using two full sheets. Now we have almost a full sheet to use on another project.
  7. Attach the boards to create the base for the mattress
    We used 2” screws for this.
  8. Attach the support pieces to the side boards
    Again, we used 1.5” screws for this. Make sure you aren’t putting these in front of the drawers. 
  9. Screw the base to the side boards
  10. Connect the MDF pieces to create the bottom and the sides of the drawer.
    The MDF was too thin to attach with screws without ruining the material, so instead we used wood glue and a nail gun to attach the walls of the drawer to the base.
  11. Screw the casters to the bottom of the drawers
    Make sure your screws aren’t too long, or they’ll poke through the inside of your drawer.
  12. Attach the drawer front
    We used the nail gun for this. Because I wanted the fronts to look the same as the rest of the bed, we attached these just barely above the ground. If you are going to do this, I recommend putting in a nail guide nail on the top of either side and then roll the drawer out fully to make sure it won’t catch on the floor in case there is a spot in your floor that isn’t level.
  13. Add guides for the drawers
    We added some leftover scraps of wood to the back and sides of the drawers to guide them on the way in. This made it a little easier to pull them out and push them in. 
  14. Set the slats on top of the mattress base

We still need to stain the outside of the frame to match our headboard, which will hopefully be done next week! Plus, we’ll likely add some sort of pull for the drawers. I’m thinking either leather pulls or cutting out part of the top with a router to create a handle, definitely something we can’t run our shins into!

We are about half way done with the hard part of our bedroom makeover and I’m already so happy with how it’s turning out! If you want to check out some of the other amazing One Room Challenge participants, click here!