Back on the DIY-home bandwagon: making progress on our homemade Murphy bed

Back on the DIY-home bandwagon: making progress on our homemade Murphy bed

Blog PhotoSomeone asked us last weekend if we've done any big home improvement projects this summer. My response? It's just been too hot to do anything major.

However, after a minor battle last week with stacks of paper I haven't been able to file, I literally begged Rob to start the DIY Murphy bed for our spare room. The idea is, if we make a Murphy bed, we'll have room for our larger-than-intended file cabinet.

I told Rob he didn't have to finish it, but if he could please shop for the materials, I'd stop griping. (Anyone else been grouchier than usual this summer, as well? Or is that just me?)

I know my husband well, and he headed to the home-improvement store Wednesday morning because he wasn't working. (He has a strange work schedule.) By the time I got home that day, he'd constructed a Murphy-bed frame from solid poplar. He finished work early yesterday, too, so by the time I got home, the Murphy bed was basically done and in our spare room.

Rob used these instructions, and built the frame out of solid poplar and birch plywood. The instructions don't call for solid wood, but he said he wanted it to be really durable. It cost less than $200, but Rob said he also used some wood he had on hand to make it as well.

I can't give you many details about the bed's construction, since I wasn't there for most of it. I can tell yBlog Photoou, though, that it makes a huge difference as far as saving space in our spare room.

Rob said he still needs to add trim and a few other pieces of lumber to the Murphy bed, I'm looking forward to figuring out a creative way to finish the side of the Murphy bed you see when it's folded up.

Rob thought maybe we could wainscot it with vintage yardsticks, but we'd have to collect a huge stash of them. I'd kind of like to do something fun with chalkboard paint, but we'll see. I'm hoping to stain the frame a dark walnut color to match our existing woodwork - that's another benefit to making a solid wood frame.

Even though it's not quite done, we were able to bring up the file cabinet last night, which is big and fits well in the room now.

I filed the paperse that had been overflowing our dining room and purged tons of papers I'd previously filed in our too-small single drawer. The result is that all our files fit nicely into the top drawer of the new cabinet. We used the cabinet's other two drawers to store winter clothes that had been in a bin under the spare bed. I think we'll have room to stash more craft supplies (yarn, perhaps?) both in those drawers and in the filing drawer vacated when we moved our files.

The Muphy bed opens up a ton of floor space I think we'll appreciate when we're working on a large but not-too-messy project or cutting large pieces of fabric. You can now walk in there without banging Blog Photoyour knees, and we're hoping to improve our storage further by putting up more shelves.

Honestly, I couldn't be happier, and I know I'm lucky to have a husband willing to give up a day and a half from his nutty schedule to build the Murphy bed. More than that, I'm relieved to finally be back on the house-project bandwagon.

I'm hoping the weather will be mild this fall, so Rob and I can revisit the home-improvement idea list I made in January. I know there are things we won't get to, but having the Murphy bed project well underway gives me hope.
 

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