Monday, February 23, 2015

Homemade Toddler Bed Ideas

The freedom of independence!!!
    The transition from an Infant to a Toddler has been an amazing experience in our household. Our little one is learning how to communicate with words, smiles, hugs, kisses, identifying flowers, trees and animals. Yes, it has been very special. To coincide with these wonderful things, I will tell you a short story.  

    Most recently, we visited some friends who have a child a little older than our own. While we were there, our daughter, Kestrel, was super excited about crawling in and out of the toddler bed. Poor Kestrel only had a crib at home, and this limited her freedom to gather her blankets, and lay down whenever she felt the need. It was fun to see her excitement and curiosity as she explored a different type of bed.

I don't know daddy?
      Later in the evening, Christine and I discussed the possibilities of getting Kestrel her own bed, and when would be the best time. Oddly enough, a few days later, Kestrel went to spend the afternoon at another friend’s house. YEAH! Mommy and Daddy were able to go on an actual date! We went to coffee, and then to see a movie. Those few hours were relaxing and wonderful. Afterwards, we met up with family for dinner.

    Upon dropping Kestrel off at her friend’s house for our date night, the first thing she did was climb right into her friend’s bed! I made a mental note. Later that evening, while families enjoyed some tasty pizza and a couple of beers, we chatted about the benefit of children having access to their own beds. The freedom of choice, personal playtime, and the ability to grab their favorite blanket at any time for their own comfort were some of the big topics. A child with this additional independence, in theory, will grow mentally independent as well. I decided it was time to start thinking about a unique bed for our little girl.

     I had a general idea of an inviting bed with a whimsical and colorful theme. So, like the rest of us, I did some research on the good ol’ internet to see what ideas I could come up with. There are some beautifully crafted toddler beds out there. I wanted a classic style bed with a headboard and a footboard. Since Kestrel is still so young, I also wanted a way for her not to roll out of bed. Naturally, I focused my attention on the beds that already fit my design ideas. There are so many beds for sale, choosing just one can truly be overwhelming. After hours of searching, there were only a couple of beds that remotely matched what I had in mind, so I decide my little girl will have her own style! 
Introduction to life size art!

            So in January of 2015 I set out to make a custom bed for my little girl. First came my general idea: 1) A fun whimsical bed theme with a unique and interesting headboard with matching footboard 2) Bed runners that will allow a small 14-15 month old child to crawl, or climb in and out of the bed 3) Supports from the side to prevent a sleepy and wiggly child from rolling out of bed and 4) A bed filled with color, children (and most adults) love color! Our family shares a love of nature, so a natural theme blossomed. With the added thoughts of an arching headboard and footboard, a tree and a mushroom design began to form. I set out to bring my imagination to reality and to drew out my plans.
Grandpa shows her the bed
    I first sketched out a bed that was quite nice. The second phase was to draw it to scale. I made some adjustment, and drew it at 1/30 scale.  This way, I could be certain all of my dimensions had the right function and aesthetic. The final stage in the planning was to increase the size for the actual construction size, or model size. This was a fun stage that even Kestrel was able to enjoy. She enjoyed coloring on the large cardboard cutouts and helping create a colorful creation while Daddy drew in his dimensions!  Lastly, my father and I constructed the bed together over the course of 3-4 days. Kestrel’s grandpa, is a fun character who absolutely adores his grandchild. During the construction, grandpa received his first kiss from his granddaughter. Naturally, he was elated! The end result . .  . . .  . an amazing bed that is functional, classical, and most importantly, well loved!
This bed can be purchased on my ‘for sale’ page or through my Yosemite Goat's Etsy Store,
                              Price: $485-painted       $415-unpainted.

Almost done!
Ready for a mattress!

Yeah, mommy can read with me too!