August's Room

A Bed for August?

August will turn two this week, on Friday (already!), and I’ve been thinking about his ‘big boy’ room. Brandon and I had already moved Eleanor to her new room (and into a twin bed) when she was around the same age. A big difference between them though is that Eleanor waits for us to come get her in the morning. Still does. August, on the other hand, will bolt the second he’s given a chance. Thus it behooves us to keep him in his crib a little longer, until he figures out how to scale it. (We’re surprised he hasn’t yet.)

I’d like to have a room plan in place though, and that hinges on the bed. I had a hard time choosing a bed for Eleanor, too. I thought about a curlicue wicker headboard (too fragile), or IKEA’s adjustable Minnen bed (not bad), but in the end decided to buy a Jenny Lind bed. This time around, all of those options are out the window.

August’s room is great for a nursery, but it’s oddly shaped. It’s only 7′ across, from the door to the window. At 14-1/2 feet, it’s the widest room in our house, but the ceiling slopes downward on each side. Only the middle 6 feet of the room has a full height (86″) ceiling.

August's Room Layout

I pulled his crib out from the wall to see how a twin-sized bed would feel in the room. Not good. There’s barely enough room to walk by the dresser, and the bed would of course be much longer too. A 42″ wide bed just doesn’t work that well in an 84″ wide room.

August's Room

We could make a twin-sized bed work if we move the dresser to where the glider and ottoman are, and then leave the dresser wall blank.

August's Room Layout with a Twin Bed

I worry that the bed will feel too big for the room though, even if it does fit. Alternatively, I’ve been considering IKEA’s Sundvik toddler bed. That’s a stopgap measure though. What will that buy us? Three years? Another option is to use our Lubi Daybed. It’s what we had in the room before we turned it into a nursery, back when it was a guest bedroom. It’s as long as a twin bed, but only 32.5″ wide. Ours is orange, and currently sitting in our basement, not being used.

Lubi Bed in the Guest Bedroom

Then the dresser could stay where it is, and we could replace the glider and ottoman with a play table and chairs. Or a tent, or teepee, or some other such thing.

August's Room Layout with Lubi Daybed

I don’t like that there isn’t a real headboard for the daybed, because I am inordinately annoyed by the idea of pillows slipping down between the bed and the wall. With a couple of bed rails though, it may be the best choice.

There is one other option too. When we bought the house, the people that lived here told us that they use to put a mattress down in the opening that we’re currently using as a play area. Hello, giant fort! I don’t know how easy it would be to change the bedding though, because the mattress would slide under that opening a little. And for some reason I think it would be a spider haven (even though we don’t have a bug problem and I have no reason to think that).

Play Area in August's Room

What would you do? I guess I’m leaning toward the daybed, but I’m really not sure.

Here’s the layout of that weird little play area nook. It’s actually open, under the floor, for nearly two feet. We currently utilize that space by sliding plastic bins under for toys.

August's Bed Nook / Play Area

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  • Reply
    Grace @ sense and simplicity
    February 5, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    What about putting the bed along the closet wall and putting curtains across the bed so it looks like a daybed when they are open, but makes a great play space when they are pulled. It would still leave the recessed play area at the other end of the room. If that doesnt’ work for some reason, then I would vote for the daybed.

    • Reply
      Making it Lovely
      February 5, 2013 at 10:07 pm

      We don’t want to block access to the closet (which takes up nearly the entire wall opposite the play area).

  • Reply
    Amber @ Wills Casa
    February 5, 2013 at 9:00 pm

    I can’t believe August is already 2 and ready for a big boy room! Where does the time go! I have been searching for a big girl bed for Ramona for about a year (she’s 3). I never thought it would be so difficult to find a reasonably priced twin bed. Ugh. Can’t wait to see how it all comes together.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    Totally random, but my sister and I had a room like that at my dad’s house in California except the actual room was huge. We had a queen sized bed down in the floor like that and it was the most fun ever. Not sure how he would feel as a teen about it though.

  • Reply
    Jennifer Rodgers
    February 5, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    What about the Malm single bed frame from IKEA? That’s what we have in our 6 year old’s bedroom. Our youngest will be 3 next week (YIKES!! Where did another year go?!) and we are in the exact place you are except that he climbed out of his crib at 16 months so he’s been in a bed ever since (took the side rail off of the Sniglar IKEA crib). I’ve redesigned his room on a Pinterest board and luckily we have the room for bunk beds…just not the budget yet. Good luck with this transition. It is bitter sweet as they grow out of baby/toddler and into pre-school-kid age. Sigh…

    • Reply
      Making it Lovely
      February 5, 2013 at 10:12 pm

      16 months? That’s early! Your room looks like it’s going to be really cute though.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    why not center a twin, full sized daybed (like the HEMNES, black-brown – could always be painted a different color) under the window. this would leave space on the closet side for the dresser and on the play pit side, for a play table and chairs. the bed could really help serve to separate the functions of the room. and a daybed can always be loaded with comfy pillows.

    you could get matching shallow storage (thinking the depth of BILLY bookcases) fort he opposite wall on either side of the door (just after the bed ends). center a 5×8 rug with the bed and you’re done. you would obviously lose the glider and the larger storage piece you’ve indicated with the changer BUT you’ve saved their play space AND given him a real big boy bed!

    • Reply
      Making it Lovely
      February 5, 2013 at 10:14 pm

      I get nervous about having the bed right under a second-floor window. I did consider a similar layout, and I’m sure I’m just being overly protective, but still.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    My daughter has been sleeping on a mattress on her floor since she was about six months (when she wasn’t in bed with us). There’s a gate in her doorway, and she happily wakes up and reads or plays after she naps.

    • Reply
      Making it Lovely
      February 5, 2013 at 10:16 pm

      I wonder if August would just chill in his room if he had access. Eleanor is so different. We try to tell her “go play with your trains, go play with your toys” in an effort to get a little extra sleep in the morning sometimes… never works!

  • Reply
    February 5, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    Hi! Love your blog! We have a vintage, actually made by my daughters great great grand father vintage toddler bed. It’s as wide as a twin bed but shorter. We then got a custom mattress made because no standard sized mattress would fit. Maybe a custom mattress for the fort area to make it easier to change the sheets? Hansa

  • Reply
    February 5, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    We have the DWR twilight sleeper sofa, and we split it apart and gave each child (6 and 2) one of the pieces (with waterproof covers) to sleep on so we could test out separate rooms, the idea of twin beds, etc. So Basically, each kid got a twin sized mattress— My 2 yr old (active) is very happy with his low ‘Montessori style’ platform bed on the floor. It doubles as a playspace, reading space, jumping space, and with no headboard or footboard it takes up very little room and I don’t worry about him rolling out. It’s a stopgap for sure, but a pretty good cheap one, and one which required no trip to ikea!. We bought a throw size quilt from Garnet Hill so he can make it himself and it looks nice when made.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    What about getting a piece of upholstery foam custom cut to fit the sunken area, and using that as a mattress instead of a standard twin? That way none of the edges would be under the lip. The downside is you couldn’t buy standard sheets, but fitted sheets are pretty easy to make, or you could just tuck the edges under and not worry about it. You could even use awesome vintage sheets. It seems to me the more floor space, the better in that little room.

    • Reply
      February 6, 2013 at 12:48 am

      Megan, I love your idea! Another thought on your idea: Nicole, if you are concerned about “spiders/ creepy crawlers” why not box the sunken area in so that the gap and access under the floor is temporarily non-existent. I know that would minimize some of the space you use for current storage, but with the floor space you just gained from one less piece of furniture in the room, you can create a toy corner with easier access to your child’s treasures.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2013 at 11:41 pm

    We have a similar problem in my 3yr old’s room, it just seems too small for a twin bed. I’m contemplating a loft bed for the future to leave more room for play, but until that time I just took the side off the crib and used it as a toddler bed. I don’t know if that’s an option on your crib, but it has worked well. I love the nook idea! Seems like a super fun secret hide out bed situation. Some glow in the dark stars… special light in there… love it.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 1:56 am

    my son turned 10 on the weekend – another one saying honestly where did that time go! I feel so old – yet I do not feel old enough to have a child of that age!
    My son went into a bed at 2 as he was climbing out of it, so we thought a bed would be less of a fall option! With a bed rail to prevent said falling out he never got out of the bed until I went into the room to say it was morning time! Perhaps August will be the same!

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 5:47 am

    I appreciate all the work that went into this post, but I have to say, my favourite part was the drawings of the spiders. They made me snort with laughter.
    I like the daybed idea. Is the mattress on the day bed. As supportive as a standard bed. That would be my only concern.

  • Reply
    The Lazy Fair
    February 6, 2013 at 7:13 am

    Just moved our two year old into a big girl bed. The room is REALLY small and unfortunately, she has to share with her brother who is due at the end of June. We got the Brimnes daybed, which is great, but the only place for it was under the window. I was nervous too, but she can’t open it and honestly, doesn’t even notice that it’s there. It seems to me that eventually you’ll have to do a twin bed. That day bed you have doesn’t seem like a permanent solution.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 7:34 am

    I would raise the mattress in the play area. Youve got storage space underneth you wont have to bend to deep for a night kiss and you’ve got yourself a traditional dutch bedstede! Here are some image links for traditional and comteporary inspiration!

  • Reply
    E E Faris
    February 6, 2013 at 9:13 am

    One of the sad things that happens with little kids (like even at the age of 3 or 4) is being teased or feeling sensitive about having a “baby bed”. Like the Ikea junior bed. Because of that, but also because of the way little boys love to fling themselves about, I think your existing Lubi Daybed would be a great idea! Especially with boys, they outgrow anything too whimsical or childish like a rocket. One day overalls or a pom pom on the hat are okay, the next thing not. Just some ideas about longevity for the mother of two (now grown up) men.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 9:14 am

    Can you box in that sunken area to be level with the floor? It would give you a bigger footprint and prevent the spider situation.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 9:16 am

    What about building a simple platform attached to the wall? Build it in the same place where you positioned the day bed – then that way you don’t have to worry about the pillows following off the bed and getting wedged next to the wall. I imagine it looking more like a sleeping nook than anything standard and gives him a little hideaway.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 9:33 am

    I vote twin bed….either in the nook or not. Once you move that dresser out of the way I think it will not feel so cramped.

  • Reply
    Bonnie Morscher
    February 6, 2013 at 9:56 am

    I like the toddler bed from Ikea. It’s not so very expensive and seems like it would be worth it even if only for two or three years. When darling August is four or five, other options will present themselves, believe me.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 10:04 am

    yikes!! kids grow FAST. id think about getting a bigger house.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 10:51 am

    DAYBED! definetely. It{s the most simple reasonable, uffordable thing I can think of. And it worked ok when it was the guest room!
    But I{ll wait a little longer so he won{t fall out of bed. Good luck!

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Maybe go with the Ikea toddler bed for now, and switch to the Lubi daybed when he is older (aka after potty training is conquered).

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 11:00 am

    I would place a mattress in the open play area. Once you’ve chosen a mattress, I would frame it out so all openings are closed off, thus decreasing spider access to nil. As long as there’s enough room to tuck in blankets and not “lose” pillows or too many tiny toys into the openings, I think positioning the bed there would open up the rest of the room and let August feel like he has a real, open space to call his own.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 11:10 am

    Is the platform covering something up? Can it be removed altogether? If not, I like the idea of building up the center and putting the mattress on top across the end. If I know boys, they LOVE a fort of any kind. And as someone else mentioned, potty training can be an issue. We had to replace my kids mattresses after their young years. Seems like an inexpensive toddler bed wouldn’t be such a bad investment.

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 11:30 am

    We have the IKEA Sundvik toddler bed for our 3 yr-old – and it’s perfect! We got it for $57 in the as-is section (big scratch on one side, we put that side against the wall). It’s narrower AND shorter than a regular twin, but I (5’2″) can still lie down in it. Also has built-in guard rails so he can’t fall out. Should last through elementary school, I hope.

  • Reply
    Cait @ Hernando House
    February 6, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    Could you relocate August to another room like you did Eleanor? It’s a little hard to tell from your house tour whether the office was once a bedroom, or if it could be used as a bedroom. (Do you have a floorplan, that might help with my confusion.) If your studio and your office are different rooms then maybe you could you combine them and use the office room for August? Or rather than combining them maybe you could just have a small desk in Brandon’s office.

    • Reply
      Cait @ Hernando House
      February 6, 2013 at 2:48 pm

      Alternatively, if the office is its own room, may you could downsize to a smaller office (August’s current room) so that he could have a larger bedroom?

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    I see your dilemma. I vote for August to get a fort in the toy cubby ;)

  • Reply
    February 6, 2013 at 11:37 pm

    I think the idea of putting his bed into the play area is darling! I bet he would like the bed in that area, and having all of that extra space to play.

    The idea I least like is having him sleep on that daybed. The poor boy needs a genuine bed. I think it would be uncomfortable and not very conducive to little boy lifestyles.

  • Reply
    February 7, 2013 at 7:42 am

    I agree with the idea to box in the extra space in the sunken area and use that space for a bed. Little boys LOVE that kind of thing (my son thinks its hilarious when there is a mattress on the floor!) Also you wouldn’t need to bother with bed guards as he couldn’t fall out of bed, ever.

  • Reply
    February 7, 2013 at 8:22 am

    Um… I would have thought it was the *coolest thing EVER* to have had a matress or fort to sleep in on the floor in the cubby-play area. If the spider concern is a realistic one, you can always put some cottonballs soaked in orange oil along the walls in the “potential spider haven”.

    Again – I would have LOVED that as a kid, and I bet you would make it beyond charming.

  • Reply
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    February 7, 2013 at 11:22 am

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  • Reply
    February 7, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    I am with Constance – I would love to see a cozy bed in the play-area…

  • Reply
    February 7, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    After reading thru the comments, I don’t believe anyone has mentioned this idea yet. Why not create a hinged ‘trap door’ in the open area within the nook and place a twin bed over it on the floor. You can then: maximize the storage space beneath the bed, use the nook space, not have to worry about creepy crawlers, have an easier time changing sheets, and purchase the twin bed that your son will grow into. For extra fun factor (and to distract him from the fact that he just lost his favourite play area), make some curtains out of fabric that mimics a tent so that his new bed can be closed off.

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    Nicole RJ
    February 11, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    Do the kids spend much time playing in their rooms? If a single doesn’t fit and the dresser *has* to stay I would (personally) consider setting up a double bedroom in the bigger room for both kids and using the smaller room as a quiet/play room for them if need be. I shared a (large) room with my brother until I was 10 and don’t have any bad memories of it!

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