Easiest Hanging Daybed

Submitted by Ana White on Wed, 08/04/2010 - 17:56
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A hanging daybed big enough to fit a standard twin mattress. It has extra room on all sides to hold drinks, books, phones and maybe even a snack.

I've had these plans drawn up for quite a while now, and  just haven't posted them. Because I thought that they were too simple.

Imagine that, too simple.

I wondered how the hanging daybed would look.

photo by Ana White, Hanging Daybed designed and built by Jacob and Ana White

And then a major media company called and asked if I would build this bed and photograph it for them.  So I enlisted the hubs help and we started building it one evening.  It only took about an hour, without a miter saw (my beloved saw is at the lake, miss ya!) and as we were building it, these are some of the ideas that we had:

1.  Let's turn it into a picnic table top
2.  Let me just burn it.  We need to have a bonfire. (that was NOT me)
3.  Oh, Mom, you made me a deck for my swimming pool!  (again, NOT me)
4.  Don't put too many screws in it, then we can disassemble it and use the lumber for something else (maybe that was me).

You get the idea.  We weren't in love with it.

So I kept repeating to myself, never judge a project until it's finished. Even though I was looking at 17 scrap stud 2x4s put together with 100 screws in the most basic and simple way.  Talk about not a lot to work with.

So we threw it all together, threw Grandma's handmade quilt and threw Aunt Sherry's retro ruffled pillowcases on top, and I tell ya, I was ready to throw myself on too!

photo by Ana White, Hanging Daybed designed and built by Jacob and Ana White
We fell in love with the hanging daybed.
photo by Ana White, Hanging Daybed designed and built by Ana White

It looks good, but oh my, it feels amazing.  Even I, who is often the butt of duct tape and fishing jokes (as in the only way I will relax is if I'm duct taped to the boat) found myself enjoying a quiet swaying.  If you don't have a hanging daybed, do yourself a favor.  Buy 17 2x4s, 100 3" wood screws, 50' of chain or rope and 8 eye bolts and skip your workout and build this.  You won't regret it.  And here's how.

see photo


Shopping List

17 – 2×4 studs (should be less than $2 each) 100 3″ wood screws 50′ of rope or chain with a load limit of at least 200 pounds (for an 800 pound capacity) 4 – Eyebolts (8 if you also need bolts for the ceiling mount too) Finishing Supplies as desired Drill with a countersink and drill bits to match the eye bolts and the screw heads Saw if you can’t get Blue or Orange to cut your boards for you.

Cut List

2 – 2x4s @ 82 3/4″ (Frame Sides) 6 – 2x4s @ 42 1/2″ (Frame Joist) 12 – 2×4 @ 84 3/4″ (Deck Boards)

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Kreg Jig
Circular Saw
Power Sander
Drill Bit Set


Step 1

Cut your frame sides at 82 3/4″ long. Mark the sides with a carpenter’s square every 14 3/4″ as shown above, leaving a 1 1/2″ gap between the marks for your studs. Then in those 1 1/2″ gaps, predrill two holes with a countersink bit. You can even start your screws. Then screw the studs to the frame sides with 3″ screws.

Step 2

pply glue to the top of the bed frame and lay the deck boards on the frame. Adjust so that the deck boards overhang 1″ on all sides as shown in the diagram above. Space the deck boards 1/2″ apart and screw down, 2 screws per deck board per joist.

Step 3

Drill a hole with the appropriate sized drill bit for the lag screws in the corners of the daybed. The pilot hole must be drilled over the bed frame. Apply glue to the pilot hole and screw the lag screw into the bed, securing tightly. TIP: Avoid over tightening and stripping the wood and creating a weak joint.

Step 4

See finishing instructions.

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill exposed screw holes with wood filler and let dry. Sand the entire daybed with coarse sandpaper. Refill holes as needed with wood filler and let dry. Sand with medium grit sandpaper, followed with fine sandpaper. Vacuum the daybed with a soft bristled brush to remove sanding residue. Follow the instructions on the exterior top coat to apply a protective finish to the daybed. Let dry completely.


Youthful One (not verified)

Wed, 08/04/2010 - 21:05

So fun!

I think I need the plans for a pulley system to lift the bed out of the way for day time and let it down for sleeping. Better than a murphy bed! My boys would be all over that - they wouldn't have to make their bed - just lift it out of sight!

Guest (not verified)

Sat, 06/04/2011 - 19:54

What a creative idea. That's something my MIL would think of. She's so creative that way. Always thinking outside the box. I plan to make these beds for my boys this week. I can't wait to get them up!!

Jenny (not verified)

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 05:48

I want to see pictures of where it is hanging from. I can't imagine a tree branch long and strong enough? Did you build a frame for it to hang from?

Erin @ SYL: Sl… (not verified)

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 06:30

i would absolutely LOVE to have this in my bedroom... Wonder how I convince my landlord on this?

Ana White (not verified)

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 07:09

We actually had no intention of keeping this daybed as it was being built, so our plan was to hang it from the swing set frame. And we did. Keep in mind it's a BEEFY swing set frame, but that's why you see the rope at an angle. Be careful about hanging the bed in a place that can adequately support the weight - about 250 pounds per eyehook.

Lazy Gardens (not verified)

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 11:06

Ana -
It's not clear where those eyes are screwed into.

Are they an eyebolt that goes all the way through the bottom frame, with a washer to keep them from stripping out, or just a big screw-eye going in from the top?

Ana White (not verified)

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 14:40

So here's the deal on the eye bolts. I technically used eye lag screws, 4" long, threaded properly with glue and the appropriate sized pilot hole, through both the deck boards and into the frame boards. IMPORTANT: Must be screwed into the frame boards. If you are nervous about doing this properly, I highly suggest using LAG BOLTS with nuts and washers, would need to be 6" long, drilled all the way through the deck and the frame boards. Check periodically if the bolts are still tight. Another method is to use lag bolts drilled horizontal into the frame sides, bolted down with nuts and washers. I would do this on the ends instead of the sides. Hope this makes sense, I've got kid's climbing on me as I type :)

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