DIY Furniture Projects DIY Home Improvement My Niece's Bedroom My Niece's Bedroom DIY Projects

Bedroom Built-Ins Finished! (Bookcases, Daybed, and Trundle Bed)

Last Updated on August 17, 2015 by Kristi Linauer

The biggest project in my niece’s bedroom makeover is finally finished! These DIY bedroom built-ins took me nine days to build from start to finish, and if my mom hadn’t helped with some of the wood filling and sanding, it probably would have taken ten days. If you missed the posts about the building of these bookcases, daybed, drawers, and trundle bed, you can find them here:

We haven’t purchased/made all of the pillows and stuff for the bed, and the shelves are all empty right now (I just finished painting on Tuesday, so we’re giving them a few days to dry before putting things on them), but here’s how the built-ins turned out…

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed -1

The last time I showed you my progress, I had just finished most of the building (with just a bit of finishing left to do), and it looked like this…

bedroom built-ins - 54

To finish it, I added baseboards on the bottoms of the bookcases, and crown moulding along the tops of the bookcases.  I also added drawer fronts to the plain drawer boxes using 1/2-inch plywood and two layers of small cabinet moulding, which I explained in this post.

small cabinet trim on drawer front

Once those were finished, I attached them to the drawer boxes with glue and finishing nails.

And finally, I added a decorative piece to the front of the trundle bed, much like a really big drawer front.  I made it out of MDF and then added large cabinet moulding around the edges to hide the gaps when the trundle is pushed up underneath the daybed.

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 3

To cut out designs like this, I use my jigsaw.  I start in one direction, and cut out as much as possible.  Since I’m right-handed, I find it easier to do the bulk of the cutting working from right to left.  I cut out around the scallops, and up into the corner.  Then I back out a bit, curve around to the next scallop, and cut into the corner.  Back out a bit, curve around, and repeat.

bedroom built-ins - 57

So after working in one direction, it looks like this, with little bits still left in the corners…

bedroom built-ins - 58

Then I work in the opposite direction, from left to right, to clean up those corners.

bedroom built-ins - 59

Once it was all sanded, I attached it to the trundle bed box just like a drawer front — with lots of wood glue and finishing nails.

I’m so happy with how everything turned out, especially those bookcases extensions that form the ends of the daybed frame.

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 10

For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out how to build those, and so many of you had some great suggestions.  I finally decided that for me, the easiest way to do it was to it was to build the bookcases as I usually would, and then add the extensions to the front of the bookcase using my Kreg Jig.

bedroom built-ins - 32

Once everything was wood filled, sanded, primed, sanded, and painted, I couldn’t even tell where the two pieces meet.  So that worked out perfectly.  I can’t remember who suggested that method, but thank you!!

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 8

This was also my first time to build drawers.  I don’t know why that process has always intimidated me before.  As it turns out, it’s quite easy.  The main thing is to get the spacing of the drawer glides and size of the drawer just right.  I found that installing the drawer glides inside the bookcases first, and then measuring for the exact size of the drawer box and building the drawer box based on those measurements, was a pretty fool-proof way to go about it.  (More on that in this post.)

The trundle bed will be great for when my niece has friends over.

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 6

It’s basically built like a really big drawer, but without drawer glides.  It rolls on casters, and is completely separate from the actual daybed, so it can be moved out completely and to any part of the room where she and her guest want it.

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 9

And when it’s tucked up underneath the daybed, the trim around the edges covers the gaps and just makes it look like a decorative piece on the front of the daybed.

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 7

One thing that my mom insisted on was having a couple of extra inches at the ends of the daybed so that there would be room for her hands to slide in there easily while changing sheets.

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 4

So I added an inch-and-a-half to each end, and to the back, of the daybed.  When we put the sheet on yesterday, it was very easy to get our hands in there, and it was also easy to slide the mattress out just a bit to reach the back to put the sheet on.  If you want to replicate this design (or a similar built-in daybed design), I highly recommend allowing that extra space on the ends and the back for easy sheet-changing.  That extra space probably won’t even be noticeable once we put a comforter on the bed.

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 5

I’m so glad it’s finished!  This was a big project, but I’m so glad I tackled it.  I learn a little bit more about building with each and every project I do.  And now I know I can build drawers!  I love learning new stuff.  🙂

And finally, here’s a quick “before” and “progress” comparison of this wall.  Here’s what we started out with…

And here’s the progress…

bedroom built-ins with bookshelves and daybed  - 2

That’s quite a change!  🙂

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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:10 am

    Your niece is a lucky girl. Such a talented Aunt and Grandma. This will be a wonderful space for her. I’m sure she will be thrilled and just as anxious as we are to see it all complete.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      August 6, 2015 at 11:00 am

      Exactly what I was going to say!!! Great thinking Mom about the “changing sheets” space. 🙂

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      August 6, 2015 at 11:34 am

      Again, exceptional and so space conscious. Great idea for many of us with small bedrooms. Really did this quickly. Your mother is a good influence! Your niece must be feeling the love!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      August 9, 2015 at 8:02 am

      Just the greatest. Sure she feels really loved.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:15 am

    Great job and I agree. One very fortunate young lady to have an Aunt and Gram that would do this for her.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:17 am

    Just like everything you do this is spectacular!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:19 am

    First off, will you adopt me as a niece? You and your very talented mother did a fabulous job…I am in awe of how beautiful everything is. Your niece is going to be so happy with her new room. Thanks for sharing, Kristi.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:20 am

    This look great!! I’m loving the slideout on the bed. How fun!!!


  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:21 am

    She’ll love it! It came out beautiful!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:21 am

    Absolutely adorable! What a dream room- she’s going to love it!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:25 am

    Absolutely FLAWLESS!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:27 am

    Great job! I can’t wait to see the whole room dressed!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Mark Tisdale
    August 6, 2015 at 9:28 am

    Fantastic work as always!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sheila F
    August 6, 2015 at 9:33 am

    Awesome! What an adorable bed! As always your work is AMAZING!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:34 am

    Good Morning Kristi,
    You and your mother did an awesome job. I love the scallops! Your niece is going to feel so happy in her new room. I love the wall color, would love to know the name. Have a Blessed Day.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Brenda Pawloski
    August 6, 2015 at 9:36 am

    That is so fresh and pretty and functional. You could sell this set by the thousands. But this is built with love with a special girl in mind.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:45 am

    Kristi, Kristi, Kristi! What are you doing?! You’re unbelievable, really! I am an awe not only of the skills displayed but of your ability to explain, in minutiae, the method. You make it look so doable that I just might build myself a bookshelf or two. But that bed!!! Yelena is squealing with delight, this we know–because all of us are. Your mother and you have pulled off an incredible build, on a budget. Good for you (both!)

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Cheryl Smith-Bell
      August 6, 2015 at 11:01 am

      I second that! Excellent!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      August 6, 2015 at 4:36 pm

      I’ll third that. Darn woman your AWESOME as always. Love that bed and built ins. Gorgeous darling simple gorgeous.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kelly B
    August 6, 2015 at 9:51 am

    Love, Love, Love how this turned out. My daughter is asking me to make her one for her room and I am seriously thinking about doing it! Would save so much room and add a ton of storage too if we decided not to put a bed in the trundle.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Julie @ follow your heart woodworking
    August 6, 2015 at 10:07 am

    You did a fabulous job on that bed and bookcases. Of course, we all knew you would!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 10:07 am

    This is totally fabulous. Your niece is one lucky girl and I know she will love it. Not only is it great for her now, she can grow into it as well. Great job!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 10:23 am

    I’ve just realised how I can do something I wasn’t sure about. The idea to cover the gaps arount the trundle with trim is brilliant and I am going to adapt it for one of my projects. Thank you very much Kristi! You are great!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Alexsandra Thompson
    August 6, 2015 at 11:09 am

    I have been contemplating building bookcases on either side if my king bed. Love the drawers you built (I was always intimidated by them too!) and it has inspired me to do this in my master bedroom!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 11:12 am

    Love, love, love it! That painting on the background is fabulous too!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 11:17 am

    Looks great! I love that the shelves are wider than those in the inspiration room.
    BTW, after reading about how much you like cloth shower curtain liners, I recently replaced our plastic liner with a cloth one. I am so happy with it. What an improvement! No more plastic liners, ever!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Gloria S.
    August 6, 2015 at 11:17 am

    I want to be you when I grow up!!!!! Marvelous, simply marvelous! What a lucky little girl!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 11:32 am

    You did a fantastic job. Your niece will never forget this and you are probably her very favorite aunty. 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 11:33 am

    By the way, that wallpaper is just so fantastic.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    Your niece should be very thrilled with her stylish new bedroom. It should be very functional for her too, leaving plenty of room for dresser, desk and whatever else her heart desires! What a great auntie and grandma she has! Lucky girl.

    I love the way you describe the details of your projects Kristi. Like leaving the space between the sides of the daybed frame and mattress for changing sheets and tucking in the bedding.

    Has she chosen the bedcover/pillow fabrics?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    I am truly impressed! Makes me think things like this are really doable and just not a picture in a do it yourselfer or cabinet making magazine that is soooo intimidating. Truly Kristi my mouth is hanging open!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 1:13 pm

    You constantly amaze me with your amazing skills and can-do attitude! It looks amazing this young lady is very fortunate to have you in her life!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 2:07 pm

    It looks very nice. I’m anxious to see what kind of bedding you (and your niece) choose to complete the look.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 2:34 pm

    You always deliver in spectacular fashion!! I love that you take advice from your readers too! At your level of experience and success it would be easy to become egotistical. Thank you for staying down to earth and awesome!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 3:58 pm

    i rarely comment but read your blog every day! this is BEAUTIFUL!!!! what a lucky niece!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 3:59 pm


  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 4:41 pm

    Who wouldn’t love that, great job!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Michaela @ The Lodge on Haydon
    August 6, 2015 at 5:29 pm

    Wow, these look really fabulous. Seriously good job! And I just LOVE that flower wall. : ) Fun Fun!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sheri Hepworth
    August 6, 2015 at 5:48 pm

    What a terrific job. Way to go!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 7:24 pm

    Wonderful transformation Kristi… it is just beautiful!! I am wondering if you are going to use the dresser from the before picture? That would look stunning painted… and would provide heaps more storage.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 7:56 pm

    On a scale of 1-10 this rates a 20! Looking for the right word….ahhh….splendid. Absolutely splendid!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:12 pm

    So so cute

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 6, 2015 at 9:45 pm

    Great job! You do know that you and your mother have set a standard, pretty difficult for a lot of us Grandmas and Aunts to live up to. lol.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lisa E
    August 7, 2015 at 8:28 am

    Absolutely fabulous. Kristi, you continue to wow us. Beautiful execution!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 7, 2015 at 10:11 pm

    Absolutely, without a doubt, just a gorgeous space for a little girl… everything you’ve accomplished thus far!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 13, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    That is so inviting for a young lady! I love the built in bookcases and that bed is great. My favorite art? The scalloped edges!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    January 19, 2016 at 10:12 am

    Following you has been a joy for a home interior decor dreamer like me! My husband’s current job keeps us from having our “forever home” right now, but you serve as an inspiration for when that time eventually comes. I’m especially inspired by all the amazing things you build. I wonder, “how in the world could I ever imagine learning how to construct that kind of stuff?!?” I guess it all starts with one project; I can tell myself I have time to grow and learn. Anyway, just wanted to share a comment as one of your many, many fans. I look forward to following your adventures! Thank you for sharing 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    January 21, 2016 at 5:55 pm

    WOW! This is incredible! Great job!!! I’ve been searching for something to do with my little girl’s room, and I love this! I have a wall with a double window (down to floor) to contend with, as well as a floor vent. Doesn’t look like I’ll be able to duplicate this, unless someone else has a genius solution?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 14, 2016 at 8:50 am

    Could you tell me what the sides of the cabinets (that extend to the end of the bed) are made out of? The part the you rounded? They are nice and thick and I would like to use something similar in my project.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Tara Lynn
    June 23, 2016 at 6:49 pm

    You are just amazing. Wow that is the cutest thing I ever saw.