April 24, 2023

The Ultimate Guide to Building Your Own Cabinet Bed Plans: Tips, and Tricks

There are even more space-efficient and functional ways to save space in your home by building a cabinet bed. It is a great space-saving bed that is just as comfortable as it is visibly attractive. 

A cabinet bed is a space-saving bed that will enhance your home. Multiple sizes range from single to queen-size mattresses. The bed is ideal for any room in your home and holds up to five hundred pounds.

Cabinet beds can be moved to any room of your home or easily transferred if you move to a new home. Move your cabinet bed to your den, home office, or bedroom. It is made with Canadian materials like wood, making them elegant and attractive. 

Cabinet beds require no installation, making the entire unit self-contained. Unlike some space-saving beds that need to be fixed to the wall, cabinet beds are moveable. Place them anywhere in the home against the wall or more centered in the room. They are also easy to pack for transport if you are moving locations.

The mattress is folded inside and pulled out to lay on the extended frame. Cabinet beds are for small spaces since they make the bed compact when not in use. They fit in rooms with any height ceiling and are easy to install and use. You can customize your cabinet bed to satisfy your tastes and needs. It can easily complement your home decor. The article will tell you more about cabinet beds and how they can enhance your home’s interior design.

Understanding the Plans

Different types of cabinet bed plans are available

Sideways cabinet bed

It is ideal for those who live in a basement or apartments with low ceilings. That can be a convenient option when you cannot fit a cabinet bed right side up, position it sideways. Find a wall with good studs that can support the bed. Build the basic structure and frame using plywood and attach that to the studs.

The structure has to be wide and strong enough to support the mattress and box spring. Install the heavy-duty hinges and add the feet to the bed frame, creating a false bottom or decorative top so the bottom of the bed is not an eyesore.

Metro Wall Unit and Cabinet Bed

This bed gives you more storage space in your home but takes up more wall space than other cabinet beds. The metro cabinet bed with a wall unit has a beautiful centerpiece. It encases the queen-sized bed with a premium, trifold Certi-Pur memory foam mattress. It pulls out into a bed in just seconds. The cabinet is birchwood, a sustainable wood harvested in North America. 

You can choose from different finishes. It can be a pair of bookshelves, two shelves, one door, or a wardrobe. It has a pullout tray nightstand, handy for overnight guests.

The Cube Cabinet Bed

That is the smallest and most affordable cabinet bed. It still holds a queen-size mattress within a solid hardwood cabinet, but it stands just over 36 inches tall with a width and height compared to other cabinet bed models. The Cube’s streamlined design and transitional style complement any décor. The cabinet is available and finished in multiple stain colors such as cherry, white, dark chocolate, or stone.

However, this model lacks the storage drawer and handy USB/power outlets in other models. It is ideal for a child’s bedroom, enclosed porch, family room, or anywhere you can carve out just over 10 square feet to place it.

Tips for selecting the right bed plan for your needs

Tips for selecting the right bed plan for your needs:

  • Measure the dimensions of the space where you intend to place the bed before starting your search.
  • Consider the type of bed you want (e.g., platform, bunk, canopy) and how it will fit your needs.
  • Look at the assembly process required for the bed plan and consider if it matches your skill level and tools.
  • Evaluate the cost of the bed plan and consider if it fits your budget.
  • If you are considering a cabinet bed, ensure enough room for movement around the mattress when the bed is open.
  • Consider the placement of the bed in the room and how it will complement the overall décor.

Understanding measurements and materials listed in the plans

Measure the dimensions of the space before you start making your bed. Know how much space you have to work with from the floor to the ceiling. To determine the dimensions of a mattress, measure it from head to foot for the length and from side to side for the width. 

Measure the depth of the mattress as well, from the bottom, where it rests on the box spring, to the top. Measure the height, width, and depth,  always at the widest or highest points, to better understand the space your bed will take up. 

Preparing for the build

Tools and equipment needed for the build a bed

To build a bed, you will need a variety of tools and equipment such as clamps (both C-clamps and bar clamps), a table saw for ripping and crosscutting wood, a miter saw for making angled cuts, high-quality saw blades suitable for cutting wood, a drilling jig for accurate hole placement, a scribe for marking lines, a high-speed hinge placement tool for installing hinges, and self-centering bits for drilling holes of consistent depth and size. Choosing the right size and type of tools for your specific bed-building project is important to ensure a successful outcome.

  • Clamps
  • Table Saw
  • Miter Saw
  • High-quality saw blades
  • Drilling jig
  • Scribe
  • High-speed hinge placement tool
  • Self-centering bits.

Preparing the workspace

  • Prepare all wood or laminate components.
  • Mount lift mechanism
  • Install springs in the lift mechanism.
  • Assemble the bed cabinet.
  • Keep your tools and materials closer. 

Safety precautions

  • Have a professional install your cabinet bed.
  • Watch out for pinch points on the cabinet bed.
  • Choose a hydraulic lift mechanism for the cabinet bed.
  • Use safety locks in the cabinet bed.
  • Follow all installation instructions.

Building a Cabinet Bed

Step-by-step instructions for building a cabinet bed

  1. Create struts. Create enough room for the bed to extend before you begin building. Lay out the 10 frame strut pieces, and pair them to create five struts. For each strut, glue two pieces in an L shape using wood glue. Hold the pieces together, and drill pilot holes 8 inches apart along the length of the struts. Secure them with an 11/2-inch screw.
  2. Assemble the sub-frame, place the struts 20 feet apart, perpendicular to the frame sides, drill pilot holes, and attach them with 2-inch screws. 
  3. Round one corner of each side rail to a 27/8-inch radius using a jigsaw. Pre-drill for the hardware, and follow the instructions. The rounded corners should face up at the foot of the bed.
  4. Attach head and foot rails. Drill five equally-spaced pilot holes from the sub-frame using a 1-1/4-inch bit, and attach the head and foot rails with 1-1/4-inch screws.
  5. Attach side rails, and place the side rails next to the sub-frame, ensuring the rounded ends are at the foot and the leg hardware is on the outside. Drill pilot holes from the subframe on each side of each strut using an 11/4-inch bit. Attach the rails to the sub-frame with an 11/4-inch screw. Drill pilot holes from the outside through the side rails into the head rail and foot rail. Attach with 2-inch screws.
  6. Position panels. Lay both face panels face down, with the long sides butted together. Align the bed frame assembly on top of the face panels. The panels should extend 1/4 inch beyond the side rails on each long side and flush with the foot rail. Extend beyond the headrail. Once the sub-frame is in place, trace between the struts to guide the glue application. Trace the 1/4-inch panel reveal on the sides.
  7. Attach panels, secure struts by applying a bead of glue to the face panels, reposition the subframe on the glue, and confirm it is flush with the bed panels at the foot and centered on the sides. Keep the face panels and sub-frame aligned. Secure the last strut with an 11/4-inch screw on the corners. Insert two screws in the center of the foot rail strut. Screw the corners at the head of the bed. Once the corners are secure, screw the remaining struts to the face panels at approximately 6-inch increments.
  8. Attach the mounting cleats flush with the short ends of the header board by drilling pilot holes and then attaching them with 2-inch screws. The header should have the best side face down. Screw a header rail to the rear side of the header board, leave 1/2 inch of the header rail extending beneath the header board, align the remaining header rail with the front edge of the header board assembly, and leave the 1/2-inch extension underneath. Secure with glue and a nailer and finish nails instead of screws.
  9. Assemble cabinet. The verticals are the sides of the cabinet, and the header is the top. Attach the verticals to the short sides of the cabinet header with a drill and 2-inch screws. Cut a notch with a jigsaw to allow clearance for base molding, so the cabinet stays flush with the wall.
  10. Attach veneer
  11. Mount the cabinet to the wall using screws.
  12. Paint or stain in your desired finish, and reinstall the hardware.
  13. Attach handles and decorative additions.
  14. Install the mattress support panels.

Tips for working with different types of materials for bed making

When working with different materials for bed making, it’s important to choose high-quality cabinetry that will last. Compare the hues and textures of different woods or materials to find the best fit for your project. If possible, work with solid wood, as it will provide the strongest and most durable finished product. Finally, check reviews of materials and suppliers to ensure you’re getting the best quality for your budget.

  • Choose quality cabinetry.
  • Compare hues and textures.
  • Work with solid wood.
  • Check reviews.

Troubleshooting common issues 

  • Place a soft rug on either side of the bed so you do not step onto a cold floor in the morning.
  • Add a cabinet bed with lights.
  • Make cabinet beds with built-in outlets and ports.
  • Add a cabinet bed with a built-in nightstand.
  • Make a cabinet bed with a storage drawer.

Finishing and Installing

Sanding and staining/painting the cabinet bed

Use an electric hand sander with heavier grit sandpaper for the first sanding. Clean the cabinet bed by wiping all the dust particles off, and then sand again with a finer sandpaper, about 220 grit. That will prepare the wood for the stain. To apply the wood stain, use a rag and rub the wood stain into the wood, going along with the grain (Angelmariemade.com). Paint and varnish the stripper to remove the stain. Remove any dirt or loose paint.  For a gloss finish, choose your wood stain wisely. 

Installing the mattress and bedding

The mattress attaches to the bed frame with a retention system, like an elastic strap, to hold the mattress in place when it is upright. Slumping can be mitigated by keeping the mattress strap tight, which keeps it straight when stored—king-size sheets for a queen-size mattress so you can tuck the fabric under the bed mattress.

Maintaining and caring for the cabinet bed

Clean and condition the vertical surfaces. Refrain from using any cleaning product with harsh chemicals.

  • Minimize exposure to excess sun and humidity. 
  • Inspect the mechanical and moving parts of the bed.
  • Use caution when opening the drawers or doors.


In conclusion, there are many types of cabinet beds depending on the space you have in your room and the proffered style. The purpose of the cabinet bed is for more space. Even if you have more space, you may choose the cabinet bed for style. Learn how to sand and clean the bed, although you can pass the job to professionals. I assume you now know how to maintain and repair the bed. For additional resources for cabinet beds, try Pinterest.


What is the best type of wood to use for a cabinet bed?

Use solid wood for durable cabinet beds. Solid wood is the best choice of material for making a durable cabinet bed. It provides sturdiness, strength, and longevity to the bed and is resistant to wear and tear.

Can I use cabinet bed plans to build a murphy bed?

Cabinet bed plans can be used as a starting point to build a Murphy bed, as the two beds have similar designs. However, it’s important to note that there may be some differences in the dimensions and hardware used between the two types of beds. It’s recommended to carefully compare and adjust the plans to ensure the finished product is safe, functional, and aesthetically pleasing. Additionally, having the necessary tools and skills to complete the project is important.

What is the average cost for a cabinet bed?

The average cost of a cabinet bed can vary depending on whether it is purchased pre-made or custom-built by a carpenter. According to [1], a pre-made Murphy bed can cost between £500-£1,500, with an average cost of around £1,000, not including the cost of the mattress. However, if a carpenter is hired to build a custom-made cabinet bed, the cost will depend on the materials and labor required. Therefore, it is difficult to determine a definitive average cost for a cabinet bed without more specific information about the type and size of the bed, as well as the level of customization desired.

What are some alternative ways to add a bed to a small space?

There are several alternative ways to add a bed to a small space, such as a convertible sofa or a Murphy bed that can fold into the wall [1]. Another option is a loft bed, which can provide extra storage or work space underneath [2]. You could also consider a daybed with a trundle that can be stored away when not in use, or even a hammock if you have sturdy enough walls and don’t mind a non-traditional sleeping arrangement [3]. Ultimately, the best alternative will depend on your space constraints, personal preferences, and budget.

How do I properly care for and maintain my cabinet bed?

To properly care for and maintain your cabinet bed, follow these tips:

  1. Regularly clean the exterior and interior surfaces of the cabinet with a soft, dry cloth to remove dust and debris. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners that could damage the finish.
  2. Keep the mattress clean and fresh by regularly washing and drying bedding before placing it on the bed. You may also want to consider using a mattress protector to help prevent stains and protect the mattress from wear and tear.
  3. Check the hardware and mechanisms of the cabinet bed periodically to ensure they are functioning properly. If you notice any issues, such as difficulty opening or closing the bed, contact a professional for repairs.
  4. Avoid placing heavy objects on the closed cabinet bed, as this could damage the bed or the cabinet itself.
  5. If your cabinet bed has drawers or storage compartments, be careful not to overload them with too much weight or items, as this could affect the smooth operation of the bed and cause damage over time.

By following these simple tips, you can keep your cabinet bed in good condition and extend its lifespan for years.

David D. Hughes

Leave a Reply