Rectangles Day Bed

Submitted by Ana White on Thu, 08/11/2011 - 09:23
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A modern style daybed, featuring a modern pattern on back and arms. Free easy step by step plans to save you money off West Elm furniture.

Here's a shout out to everyone who doesn't have preschoolers. I know we do way too many kid projects, and I sure appreciate you hanging in there!

By popular reader request, inspired by West Elm Window Daybed, make your own!

Fits twin sized mattress. Measure your doorways - if you can't fit 30" through it, you will need to do some assembly in the room.


Shopping List

3 - 2x3 @ 8 feet long
7 - 1x2 @ 8 feet long
6 - 2x2 @ 8 feet long
Use either pocket hole screw or regular screws

Common Materials
2 inch screws
2 1/2 inch screws
3 inch screws
120 grit sandpaper
wood conditioner
paint brush
Cut List

24 - 1x2 @ 12" (Sides of Rectangles)
9 - 1x2 @ 5 1/2" (Rectangle to Rectangle Joiners)
6 - 1x2 @ 4 1/4" (End Joiners)
24 - 1x2 @ 6 1/2" (Tops and Bottoms)
3 - 2x2 @ 75" (Back Top and Cleats)
2 - 2x3 @ 75" (Aprons)
4 - 2x2 @ 30" (Legs)
2 - 2x2 @ 39" (Arm Top)
2 - 2x3 @ 39" (Arm Aprons)

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

You are probably wondering why in the H are we starting by building an H? Why not start by building the rectangles? Well, there's good reason (unless you own a Kreg Jig, and then you can do whatever the H you want - or rectangle for the matter). 

See what happens is you won't have room to fit your drill in to screw additional pieces on.  Then you are just stuck.
So build 9 Hs.  Just like this one.
If you have a Kreg Jig, go ahead and drill all pocket holes set for 1 1/2" stock and fasten with 2 1/2" screws and glue.

Step 2

Now we are going to build some sideways Ts. Six of them.

Step 3

Now add the tops and bottoms as shown in diagram above. See what I mean about being able to get your drill in there to predrill holes and drive screws? Make sure you are working on a flat, level surface, and DEFINITELY check for square (or rectangle) in this case.

Step 4

Now add the Ts to the ends.

Step 5

Step 6

Now the legs.

Step 7

By now, you are a pro, rock star builder, whippin' this thing out! One thing to consider, especially if you are using pocket holes, is to mirror the two ends so your pocket holes are on the outsides for both arms.

Step 8

Front apron should be an easy step.

Step 9

Use 2 1/2" screws and wood glue to attach cleats to aprons, flush to the bottoms.

Step 10

You can either use a bunkie board, metal bed spring, or a box spring, or slats as shown above. Always refer to the recommendation of your mattress for slat spacings.

Step 11

And if you expect a heavier load, this is how you would "beef up" the bed.

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.


kenm09 (not verified)

Tue, 09/27/2011 - 17:32

Hi Ana,

I cut the 2 1/4" pieces of wood (mentioned as spacers above) to connect the rectangles to the bed. How are you supposed to fit two pocket holes on such a small piece of wood? Am I missing something here?



Tue, 10/18/2011 - 11:47

I started this Daybed on Saturday and realized that the 24-2 1/4 1X2 were not on the cut list. I had more wood left over than I should have. I was worried until I flipped through the instructions again and spotted them. Just thought you should know.

cjay (not verified)

Mon, 11/14/2011 - 07:55

I have a trundel bed that I would like to be able to put under this bed that requires 13" of clearance rather than the 8" that is shown here. Would you anticipate any stability issues from lengthening the legs by 5"? Perhaps if I were to add another board on the bottom on both sides and the back it would be okay, or do you think that is necessary? Thanks.


KSchmalz (not verified)

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 16:12

Love this, going to make it next month and am about to go buy lumber. I have a question regarding lumber sizing- are the lumber dimensions true to size (ex, 1x2 is actually 1" by 2"), or are they the slightly-smaller-than-advertised size (ex, 1x2 is actually 3/4" by 1 3/4")? Thanks!


Sun, 12/18/2011 - 07:02

You can't count on the sizing of dimensional lumber. It's typically 1/4" undersized, but sometimes it's more. You will need to adjust cuts for the material you actually have.

Melissa in Kentucky (not verified)

Mon, 07/30/2012 - 05:31

We worked on this project this weekend. I would definitely add to the cutlist the 24 2 1/4" pieces missing, and if you don't have a jig I would make the Ts like the ends with the 6 1/2" pieces to make for easier assembly.

We are in the painting stages and we found fairly good wood and with paint, screws, and wood we are at about $75 or so.

This is part of my daughter's 13th birthday room redocorating and I can't wait to get it finished. One because I can't wait to see it with her new bedding and if she likes it.

Two, because I can't wait to pick out our next project!


Mon, 07/22/2013 - 06:27


Love your stuff and have your book! This is the first piece of furniture for me and it was my first time using pocket hole screws (borrowed Kreg unit from my brother). Pocket hole screws rock!

I agree with some of the other posters that pocket hole screws for the rectangles seems like a big challenge and is probably over kill for a decorative element. I chose to put them together using wood glue and brad nails. It seems solid but only time will tell. If I had to do it again, I would probably have put them together using glue and wood screws (pre-drilling the holes of course).

I also agree with the recommendation to make top and bottom T's just like the side T's.

I also agree with Ken and you will have to play around with your pocket hole jig to get it to work with the little 2-1/4" pieces - just not enough wood to use a 2-1/2" pocket hole screw.

I still have sanding and painting to do - but everyone is already impressed with my progress so far.

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