Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Getting my Zs

So, one of the things I discovered when I moved into the house was that my box spring for my queen sized mattress will not fit up the stairs into the bedroom. When my ex and I lived there there was a king sized bed in that room - which meant two twin sized box springs. They fit up just fine. The regular mattresses - both the king and the queen fit up just fine as well, since they fold and you can kind of cram them up there. However, the queen box spring is just about 3" too wide.*

This leaves me with a variety of options:

1. I could keep the status quo and I could continue to sleep on mattress only. Currently it is resting in the bed frame on top of plywood which has been laid across the bed slats.

2. I could buy a new bed in a new size. Twin, Full and King beds will all fit easily.

3. I could buy a new type of queen sized mattress and/or a new bed frame that doesn't require a box spring,

4. I could move my bedroom down to the first floor. I know my box spring will fit in there, since that is where I am storing it presently.

5. I could put up a couple of big hooks and a hammock.

Unfortunately, none of these options really appeal to me. My bed was built for me by my father and it was specifically built for a box spring. Without one, there is a big (by big I mean bigger than my head) gap between the top of the mattress and the bottom of the headboard. Frankly, it is dangerous. I have woken up a few times and realized during the night I ended up under the headboard. That could be really bad if I woke up in a hurry.

But I don't want to buy a different sized bed. If I buy different bed that is also going to mean new sheets and comforters, and so on. Currently I have queen beds in both the house and the cottage. It is convenient to be able to mix and match the bedding. I actually really liked the idea of getting a new platform style bed that didn't need a box spring, so this weekend I went and checked them out at Ikea. The thing about Ikea though is that everything is ala cart. When I found the nifty $499 bed that caught my eye in the catalog - it turned out to be over $1,000 complete. I don't have the $499 - let alone the rest!

Then there is moving down to the first floor. Sigh... I could but... when my ex and I split he moved down there. The room still has some of his "atmosphere" in it. It is ok as an office and eBay room, but I don't want to sleep there. Besides, the main bedroom has the dressing area, big closet, window seat and skylight. It's a great room. I don't want to switch. Unfortunately I am not nimble enough to climb in and out of a hammock during the middle of the night, so that cut my options right down, but then I had a thought...

Why not build a platform bed? I really like the idea of having something simple and low profile in that room. Why not make something myself? Maybe something along the lines of this:

Okay, according to the description, this is a $5,000 bed - and if I don't have money for the $500 bed, I certainly don't have it for this! But that doesn't mean I couldn't make something like it, no aluminum base, no swiveling bed trays, but inspired by this design.

The next question was about mattresses. Did I have to get a special mattress for my platform bed? So, I started researching online. I just wanted to get a feel for what is out there and how much I can expect to have to pay. I also wanted to see if there was some sort of special "box spring-less" mattress I needed. I admit, I was a bit overwhelmed by what I found, that was until I found this hilarious article on Slate.com. (I'll put a link to it at the bottom, but it is a must read for anyone who is mattress shopping!)

I also found some great links to other people who have built their own platform beds. I am going to try to rough up a design and see if I can come up with the lumber. I'll work on a plan, invite a few friends with power tools over and offer them pizza and see what we can't do. I figure I can use my current mattress in it until I have another windfall. Then I will get another queen sized mattress so I have one upstairs for me, and one downstairs for guests. I'll be sure and keep you informed as to how it comes out - and naturally, how much money I spend!!

Sleep on This:

Slate.com, Seth Stevenson - Going to the Mattresses (A very funny must read!)

My Family Loves It - How to Build a Platform Bed

YouTube - Platform Bed Building

Associated Content - How to Build a Platform Bed for Less than $50

Associated Content - How to Build a Platform Bed with Cinderblocks

Top photo by wander.lust

Second photo by wnorrix

* Yes, we tried that. And that too. I tell you, it just isn't going to fit.

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