Build a Toddler Bed

Ok, I’m so excited about my woodworking projects. I’m just a beginner, but Ana White’s website with free plans gives me the confidence to try just about anything now. Actually, Shreya gives me the confidence. She’s thinks I’m really a builder.

After building her little table and chair, I was anxious to try another project. After recently moving into a new house,  Shreya was in between beds. Her toddler bed didn’t work out;  she wasn’t ready for a big twin bed upstairs,  so she was sleeping on a mattress on the floor and crawling into bed with Mommy and Daddy every night. So I figured, why not try to build her her very own bed. Maybe she’d be motivated to sleep in her own bed and give Mommy and Daddy a better night’s sleep.Shreya paints her bed

After much research and debate, I decided on the Traditional Wood Toddler Bed. I made a few minor alterations – to allow for the mattress size – and to make it look neater to me. It only took a few hours to build it. Yes, maybe half a day. Then it actually took longer to sand and paint two coats of white. So, working straight through, you could definitely do it in a day.

The munchkin was over when I was painting the bed and insisted on helping paint her bed. I gave her a cup of paint and put her on the back of the headboard.  I figured she’d lose interest in a few minutes, so I just gave her a pitiful foam brush. Well, that little girl was determined to paint the whole thing – she worked on it for the best part of an hour – way after I took a break. Then I wished I had given her a proper brush – she would have painted it perfect. (Yup, I guess she’s a perfectionist like her nani!) Her results were so cute, I didn’t have the heart to paint over it – so that’s how the back of the headboard still looks.

Toddler bed with mattressLink over to my brag post on Ana’s site to see how I did it.

By the way, her Mommy bought her the most comfy organic memory foam mattress. And it doesn’t have a smell like regular memory foam mattresses. Check out the LA Baby Soy Foam crib mattress (affiliate link.)

So, now that she has a big girl bed and a comfy mattress – guess what? She’s sleeping all night in her own bed!

How To:

You can find the supplies and cut list and instructions on Ana White’s site:


Here’s the supplies I used. (Affiliate links included. View my complete Disclosure.)

  • Kreg Jig R3 or Mini Kreg Jig – If you’re a serious woodworker, you can go for the master kit, but the smaller one is fine for the beginner on a budget. That’s what I use.
  • Kreg Clamp – Don’t make the mistake of trying to use another (cheaper) clamp. I had to go back and buy the Kreg Clamp – it’s the only one that holds the jig perfectly.
  • Kreg screws – Yep, you need special screws self-tapping pocket hole screws. The driver bit is included with your Kreg jig kit. I used mostly 1 1/4″ screws with the 1″ boards. You want coarse screws for soft wood like pine, and fine screws for harder woods like oak.
  • Kilz Primer
  • Glidden High Endurance Plus Satin in White (Walmart)
  • Various wood screws
  • Countersink bit for wood screws
  • Brad Nail gun for slats – Oh my goodness! Why did I wait so long to buy a nail gun!? Like the Kreg Jig, it’s a life-changer!
  • Random Orbit Sander – I love this one; so easy to use!
  • Sanding Pads








Building a Little Table and Chair - Fun, Easy and Cheap!
The Easy Way to Build a Cute Playhouse!