If you're decorating your child's bedroom with a mermaid theme and you want to create something a little different from a standard bed dressed with mermaid-print bedding, then a clam shell bed is the perfect solution. It creates an interesting focal point upon entering the bedroom, offers plenty of imaginative play for the child, and complements a range of decorating themes such as underwater or the beach.
Things You'll Need
Place the mattress on a standard bed frame. Measure the height from the bottom of the frame where the mattress sits, to the top of the mattress. Remove the mattress and place it to one side. Measure the length of the bed.
Cut two pieces of plywood, according to your height and length measurements. These will be the side panels. On the first piece of plywood, use a pencil to draw large, overlapping seashell shapes all along the length. Use a jigsaw to cut along the seashell shapes at the top of the wood, leaving the sides and bottom square. Lay this piece of plywood on top of the second piece and use it as a stencil to repeat the pattern and cut it out as before.
Add 12 inches to the measurement you took earlier from the base of the bed frame to the top of the mattress. Measure the width of the bed and cut a piece of plywood according to your measurements, to create a foot board. Draw three seashell shapes in pencil along the wood, ensuring the one in the middle is slightly higher than the two either side of it. Cut along the tops of the seashell shapes with a jigsaw.
Measure from the base of the bed frame, to as high as you wish to take the headboard. Ensure it is high enough so that when the child leans back against the headboard, it is higher than her head. Mark the bed-width measurements on a piece of plywood, then add 6 inches to either side and cut. The idea is to create a clam shell headboard that is the same width as the bed frame where it fixes to the bed, but fans out wider than the bed at its widest point.
Draw a clam shell shape on the headboard piece, ensuring it is within the marks showing the width of the bed at the bottom, but reaches out to the very edges of the plywood at the sides and the highest point at the top. Cut out with a jigsaw.
Paint the side panels, the headboard and the foot board. Allow to dry thoroughly, then screw the finished pieces to the bed frame. Fill the screw holes with an all-purpose filler, sand and touch up with paint.