DIY Upholstered Platform Bed Frame

Custom Upholstered Bed Frame

A contribution from At Amy’s House

DIY Upholstered Platform Bed Frame

(See the photo progress below!)

My boyfriend and I finally decided it was time to upgrade to a king bed after living together and sharing a queen bed for the past 6 months. With him being 6 foot five he took up his fair share of the queen bed. So among holiday shoppers we sought out a deal on our king mattress.

Upgrading to a king bed also inspired us to decorate the bedroom as only some cosmetic updates had been done to it after we moved in except for paint, carpet, a new ceiling fan, and can lighting. Well I guess that actually sounds like a lot, but aesthetically, it still wasn’t meeting my hopes and dreams for our master suite…and while a lot of decorating still needs to be done, we accomplished one major feat – building our custom bed frame.

When we decided to get the king mattress I spent weeks and weeks looking online at different bed frames and wandering through different furniture stores. Through all of my perusing price seemed to be the biggest obstacle. It’s crazy how much a bed frame can cost since all I was looking for a simple upholstered platform bed without a head board! The least expensive bed frame I found that met my criteria ( was $250.00 plus a delivery surcharge for being an over sized item, but it still didn’t provide the luxurious look I craved.

Our upstairs bedroom has vaulted ceilings with one ceiling coming so low that the wall is only 36 inches high. And of course that is the only wall a bed actually fits against. So in finding, and eventually building a bed frame, we had to keep in mind how high we could actually have the mattress sit off the floor without constantly hitting our head on the ceiling when getting in and out of bed.

After dragging my boyfriend, Michael, to countless stores and interrupting him constantly to look at different frames on line, we finally thought, what if we just build our own? It couldn’t be much more expensive and could possibly save us money. Plus, this way we were able to get exactly what we wanted.

We started reviewing different plans on Pinterest and on a Saturday date night at Home Depot we finally bought all of our supplies. We wanted to achieve an over sized/polished/non-home-made look for our bed frame, so we decided the bigger the better when it came to the size and thickness of the boards that would make up the visible frame.

To build the frame we used the follow:

  • Lumber
    • 3 10x2x10
    • 1 10x1x10
    • 1 4x4x8
    • 13 (slats) 1x4x8
    • Middle rail 2x4x8
  • Hard Ware
    • 1-1/4 to secure everything together (Michael had a fear the bed would fall apart, so he may have overdone it on these)
    • 4 U- bolts to secure the frame to the legs (we recommend square u-bolts)
    • 2 Nail joist hangers for middle support
  • Paint
    • Black chalk paint from home depot
  • Fabric (Joannes coupons are great here! We were able to get everything 25% off)
    • Dark gray linen fabric (Joannes) 2 yards (48 in wide)
    • Batting 2 rolls (twin bed size) 4 layers each rail
    • Muslin

First we used the mattress dimensions to determine the length and width of the frame. We cut the 2x 10 x 10s to the proper length to make 2 sides and the front. The 1x10x10 was cut to length to make the back or 4th side. Once the outer perimeter was assembled and everything looked good, all slats for the bed were cut. Make sure you mark the corners with numbers. This makes it a lot easier to match the pieces together. We disassembled the bed and carried everything up to what was now our now empty bedroom.

We built the bed frame in the room and started to cover the sides with 4 layers of batting (the plusher the better), a layer of muslin, and a layer of fabric, all stretched taunt and stapled. As no one will actually see the board supporting the head of the bed, we decided to use a thinner board and not cover this board with fabric. We started with both sides, wrapping the fabric around the corners to the head and foot of the bed. Next came the foot board…now the only challenge with this was getting the extra fabric to fold and make it look almost seamless without bunching. This was not an easy feat, but after folding, re-folding and folding some more and stretching the fabric, we were able to secure the fabric smoothly.

DIY custom bedframe

After the bed was wrapped, it was time to add the legs which Michael cut from the 4×4. Each leg was 10 inch tall with an angle starting 4 inches down. The angles were placed facing toward the inside of the bed and were secured about 6 inches up from the bottom of the bed frame (the mattress sits 4 inches deep into the frame). Each leg was slightly sanded and painted with 2 coats of black chalk paint and 2 coats of polish. Once dry, each leg was secured to the bed frame using U shaped bolts. The challenge here is the bolts end up being hidden under the fabric, so if/when we move, the bed frame will be staying here to avoid the pains of pulling back the fabric and trying to remove the bolts. I would recommend using square u-bolts as they will fit flush against the side board.

One the legs were secured, the middle support running the length of the bed was secured with 2 metal nail joist hangers with a 4X4 leg in the middle. All 13 slats were then placed width-wise in the frame and secured.

DIY custom bedrame

…and finally our bed frame was complete! !

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