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We are the Boyce Family.  We live in an RV and travel the country learning and loving.  Our adventures are mostly documented by Mom, Elizabeth Boyce, professional photographer.  Come along!

Havoc at Home:  Ikea Kura Family Bed Hack Tutorial

Havoc at Home: Ikea Kura Family Bed Hack Tutorial

ikea.kura.family.bed.hack.jpg

After a million requests (and that might not even be an exaggeration) I have put together a tutorial on our Ikea Hack Kura Bed.  I hope this breakdown makes it even easier for your family to get the sleep you need!!

Above is a drawing I did that best represents our new bed.  I am hoping this will visually allow you to see how simple it really is!  Your bed size will vary depending on your space.  But I will give you a quick explanation of what we did.

Step 1:  Purchase two Ikea Kura Beds

We already owned them when we created the family bed, but we were able to purchase them on Craigslist for $75 each.  Expect to pay between $75-$125 used and $200 new per bed.  Ikea sells a thinner mattress that would make the rails higher.  It wasn't as comfy for our kids and we already had mattresses.  You can use what works for your family.

In order to keep the bed looking like one piece, we opted to keep all the white sides visible.  You can also check out other hacks where the panel boards are redecorated. Complete creative freedom with this bed!

The beds were assembled so that they were mirror images.  Due to space restrictions, our ladders would be up against the walls, making them unusable, so we faced the solid side of the bed out so they could climb up that way.  If you prefer to have the entire bottom space open for easier access and airflow, simply assemble so the open side is facing out.  We suggest that the entire bed be put against a wall that will act as your headboard.

Step 2: Remove or do not install the bottom crossbar that faces the middle of the bed

If your room is large enough to fit this bar in it's new location without cutting it, do that!  If not, you can either cut it to size or replace it with a 2x4 sized piece of wood.  We opted to buy other wood and store the crossbar so that the bed could be used on it's own in the future.  These cross bars help stabilize the bed.  If you wish to put something in the space the crossbar previously occupied, we suggest something flat that a mattress will lay easily on top of.

To anchor these, we used l brackets screwed into the wood leg of the bed and the wood cross bar.  

Step 3: Purchase two 2x4 pieces of wood and white panel board.

I bought the 2x4's that most closely matched the bed colors natural wood.  I did not have the time or energy to sand and stain.  It isn't exact, but you can hardly tell.  I had Home Depot cut it to fit between the two beds to create a crossbar/shelf.  

Next I purchased white panel board.  You can purchase a large piece that can be cut lengthwise only and have it be one solid piece.  Because I was on a small budget, I chose to purchase a square piece that was cut in half and then put together with brackets to create a solid piece.  There is a tiny gap, but again, not noticeable.

This white square board was this from Home Depot:

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Unbranded-Marker-Board-Common-3-16-in-x-2-ft-x-4-ft-Actual-0-180-in-x-23-75-in-x-47-75-in-7012090/203377708

My finished seam looks like this...

Step 4: Nail the white board to the two 2x4's with small white panel nails to create one long piece

Step 5:  Attach the headboard to the two beds

Using corner brackets and screws I was able to attach the headboard to each bed.  It was a perfect match, but it worked well enough!  I also wasn't quite strong enough to get all the screws in, but it wasn't going to be weight bearing (the kids had very strict instructions not to walk across it) so it just needed to be secure and safe.

Once attached, it should look like this on each side...

Step 6:  Put in mattresses

We have a twin mattress on top of each bunk.  On the bottom, we are able to fit a king, twin and toddler mattress easily.  It is possible to fit two twins, but it is a very tight squeeze.  There are some small gaps around the bed.  We have taken extra body pillow and filled them in.  You could do the same. 

Our mattresses are on our floor.  You could choose to take plywood and make a palette for them to sit on if you wanted.  

Step 7:  Decorate!

We wanted to keep it simple and easy, but also make each space feel like it's own.  I used Ikea curtain rods and Ikea curtains to section off each space.  I purchased battery operated wire lights to put in each space for reading at bedtime.  We used a small folding travel bag from Target hung from a hook to hold my phone, earplugs, nose spray and CPAP.  I am so high maintenance!  We hung up a few pictures and we were done!

Looking back if I were to do it again, I would buy lights with a remote (shown below) since it proves hard to get the lights off if the kids fall asleep with them on.

Cost Breakdown of what we spent:

Kura Beds $150

Wood and paneling to make one bed: $16.50

Curtains, rods and lights for the beds (4 sets): $61.00

We actually already owned the curtains, rods, and beds, so my only cost was the wood and paneling as well as the lights.  Everything else was re-purposed from other areas of the house.

And because no tutorial is complete without actual photos of it in use, these are images taken in a very dark room while my kids were sleeping.  The lights seem bright, but they are not.  These are not fancy!  This is the real life stuff here.  No staging, no special effects.  Just kids happy, safe and comfy in their bed.





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