Kentwood Bed

Submitted by Ana White on Thu, 03/15/2012 - 01:00
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How to build rustic camp style pine bed! Free step by step plans include everything you need to DIY furniture!

Can you believe that this bed is made with 2x4s?

Now in fairness, anything Brook touches becomes awesome.  This I know.  But I still can't help but stare at this beautiful bed!

Brook writes:

To give the wood the aged look I mixed steel wool with vinegar and painted it on with a paintbrush.  After it dried I brewed a couple bags of breakfast tea and painted it on.  Then I dry brushed on some silver paint in a few spots to give a little added texture and shimmer.  The whole bed got a couple coats of polycrylic to protect the finish.

So there you have it.  2x4s, steel wool, vinegar, breakfast tea and some dabs of silver paint.  The secret recipe to beautiful rustic simple furniture.

I've shared the step by step plans below, and I hope you take a second to stop over and read Brook's post on building and finishing this bed.  Thanks Brook!

And here's the plans!

Dimensions are shown above.


Shopping List

1/2 sheet - 3/4" thick plywood measuring 4x4 feet
2 – 2x8 @ 8 feet long
2 – 1x4 @ 8 feet long
4 – 1x3 @ 8 feet long
2 – 2x4 @ 8 feet long
2 – 1x2 @ 8 feet long
1x3s for slats or box spring
1 1/4” and 2 1/2" pocket hole screws
1 1/4" finish nails
Wood glue
Finishing Supplies

Cut List

2 – 3/4" plywood @ 24” x 37 1/2" (panels)
4 – 1x4 @ 37 1/2" (panel trim)
12 – 1x3 @ 17” (panel trim)
2 – 2x4 @ 48 1/2" (headboard legs)
2 – 2x4 @ 29 1/4" (footboard legs)
2 – 1x3 @ 45 1/2" (top of footboard and
2 – 2x8 @ 75” (siderails)
2 – 1x2 @ 75” (cleats)
1x3 @ 39” for slats or use box spring

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Kreg Jig
Circular Saw
Brad Nailer
Power Sander
General Instructions

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!


Step 1

Go ahead and drill 3/4" pocket holes around side and top edges of both plywood panels. These holes are for attaching legs and top in later steps.

Step 2

Then add the top and bottom trim to fronts. TIP: you can also Kreg Jig the slats (next step) to top and bottom trim before attaching.

Step 3

Attach slats, spaced as shown in diagram.

Step 4

Now for the headboard, attach longer legs.

Step 5

Step 6

Footboard is same as headboard, only uses shorter legs. I like simple :)

Step 7

Now let's build those siderails! If you have a boxspring, you probably want the cleat attached at lowest possible position. Without a boxspring - using a slat system - you might wish to attach cleat at highest possible position - 1" down from top edge.

Step 8

Attach siderails to headboard and footboard.

NOTE: For easier assembly/disassembly you can buy special bed hardware for attaching siderails.

Step 9

And finally, add slats or bunkie board or box spring.

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.


sherx2 (not verified)

Thu, 03/15/2012 - 11:41

WIll you be doing this in a queen size version?
Also how could you just make the headboard and
attach it to a (free standing) metal frame
for matress and box springs.

In reply to by sherx2 (not verified)

Ana White

Fri, 03/16/2012 - 11:27

Hi!  For a queen size, I'd recommend a few changes.  First, I'd like to see the headboard just a little taller.  You can do this by just cutting the legs on the headboard longer as shown in the diagram above.  This will create a gap between mattress and headboard, no biggie if you are using a box spring.  The other option is to make the headboard panel itself taller.
I also made the headers 2x3s to match the overall larger scale of the bed.
I recommend using a box spring to support the mattress.  If you must do slats, you will need to add a center support, and most likely, a "5th" leg to the center of the bed.
Hope this all makes sense!
Also siderails are 80" long for a 60x80 queen.


Thu, 03/15/2012 - 11:50

You mention being able to purchase special hardware to make assembly/disassmbly easier, but I have no idea what it's called or where to find it. Could someone please provide that information? Thanks!

This bed is awesome, I have changed my mind about which bed I want to build for my husband and I's room several times over now....I'm paralyzed by indecision! ;-)


Thu, 03/15/2012 - 11:59

The general term for it is knockdown hardware. In this particular case, you're probably going to be happiest with bed frame brackets, which are sold by Rockler among others. A cross dowel nut might also work, and Tage Frid had a slick little trick he could do with a t-nut, a dowel, and a bolt, so that the hardware was almost completely hidden. The Tage Frid trick is documented in his book on furniture design (book 3 of Tage Frid Teaches Woodworking), if you want to get completely DIY about it.

Carrie Wittenberg (not verified)

Fri, 03/16/2012 - 08:05

I used the brackets from Rockler on the Farmhouse Bed I made for my sister. It takes a little work with a hammer/chisel to get them mounted nicely but they work great when they're done! The rails come unhooked on both ends so you can take the bed apart into 4 pieces (headboard, footboard and 2 side rails).

Just be sure you start making the holes for the hooks to slide into with the bracket mounted right side up. I made that mistake and couldn't figure out why the hooks weren't sliding in. Turns out that they were resting on the mounting screw because I put the bracket on upside down! Easy fix but I sure did feel stupid!

Sara Jayne (not verified)

Fri, 03/16/2012 - 10:51

We have built two beds of our own design, using some of Ana's as a starting point. We use deck hardware to put the side rails on so then you can unscrew it to take it apart for moving. It's about $20.

Rachel Harwood (not verified)

Thu, 03/15/2012 - 18:03

I was thinking I would just make my girls matching headboards for their beds, but now I'm thinking I might make them matching beds instead! Love this bed! :)

I'm sure I can figure out how to alter it for a king single bed, I'll just measure the mattresses that we already have and adjust the sizes of the wood to fit.

Michael Brooking (not verified)

Fri, 03/16/2012 - 13:52

I think the work you are doing is great and very inspirational. I have been looking for project ideas for a king size bed. Will you be positing dimensions for this project or is there already a place they can be found for a king?

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