Homemade Day Beds


Make a "green" daybed from used pallets and set it on wheels so it can wander anywhere in the house or even out on a summer porch. It takes very little time and marginal skill to pull together something you can lounge around on and your guests will marvel at. And you'll still have plenty of cash left over to keep the refrigerator stocked for their visits. Make an extra pallet day bed for a teen's room, to use for hanging out and for sleepovers.

Things You'll Need

  • Two used hardwood pallets
  • Small sander or coarse and fine sandpaper
  • 4 braces or bolts
  • Drill
  • Paint (optional)
  • Paintbrush (optional)
  • Screwdriver
  • Five large bolt-on casters (4 locking)
  • Mattress or foam block
  • Bedding and pillows
  • Get two untreated wood pallets. This is the most important part of the operation. Many pallets are made from inexpensive wood that is pressure-treated to inhibit pests. The wood splinters easily and, even worse, off-gases noxious chemicals. You don't want this kind of pallet. Look for pallets made of hardwood in the U.S. to be re-used multiple times, for moving cartons in a warehouse, for instance. Disposable construction pallets are typically the cheaper, chemically treated ones. Hardwood pallets are perfectly fine to recycle into furniture.

  • Sand the pallets to remove any rough spots or splinters. If you are certain they are untreated hardwood, you don't need to paint or finish them. If they are grungy or in any way questionable, cover them with two thick coats of a medium gloss acrylic paint. The paint covers flaws and seals the wood.

  • Bolt locking casters to all four corners. Place the wheels against the pallets; mark the holes for bolts with a pencil; drill the holes and bolt the casters to the pallets. Add one free-wheeling caster, non-locking, in the center of the day bed.

  • Put a twin mattress, block of extra-firm foam or futon on the platform. Cover it with a duvet cover or make up the mattress with sheets and wrap a colorful quilt around it.

  • Add a few fat pillows and the day bed is finished.

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