Easy How to Build a Mid Century Modern Platform Bed

December 3, 2020

Hi! I'm Nicole

Fearless DIY. Sharing building project tutorials and interior design tips. Let’s build something beautiful together. For more projects, design tips and behind the scenes, follow me @designtobuild.nicole

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I have built a lot of furniture, but never have I ever, built a bed!! To walk into our newly remodeled master bedroom and know that I have literally built every single thing in there, is an amazing feeling of accomplishment! This makeover has been so much fun! We finally have our very own retreat. I love it!!

I fashioned this mid century modern platform bed off of a friend over on Instagram. Melissa at House on Parkway has this same platform bed that she purchased from Zinus. I loved it, drew up some plans and gave it a go….. (Affiliate Link Included)

King size bed with a blush pink quilt folded across it


The following plans are for a King Size Mattress (Generally 76″x80″) 

We purchased a Lull Mattress and love it! Great price and very comfortable!!    (Affiliate Link Included)

Materials Needed:

(Amazon Affiliate Links Included)

2X4X8 (Ripped to 3″ wide) (14)

2x4x8 (Ripped to 1.5″ wide) (2×2’s) (6)

4’x8′   3/4″ plywood  (2 sheets)

2 1/2″ Kreg Jig Screws

2 1/2″ GRK Screws

Paint (I chose Sherwin Williams Historic Charleston Green; Fun Fact: it’s actually black 🙂  )

Stain (I chose Varathane Golden Oak)


Sanding Sheets (220 and 60)

Tools Needed:

(Amazon Affiliate Links Included)

Miter Saw

Table Saw (Optional) If not available, have Home Depot rip your boards for you


Kreg Jig


Note: I like to get rid of the manufactured edge on all of my 2x pieces of wood. Please check out this post to see how I do that. This is completely optional, but definitely gives a more finished furniture-quality look. I highly recommend taking the time to do this.

STEP ONE: Build the footboard

Note: I cut all of my 2×2’s in this post from 2×4’s. The actual width of a 2×2 is 1.5″ Therefore, I ripped the manufactured edge off of my 2×4’s (See this post) making them 3″ wide, I then ripped them in half to get approximately 1.5″ boards. This makes this project a lot cheaper, however, if you prefer, you can purchase 2×2’s and achieve the same look.

Cut one 2×2 @ 73 1/4″ ….. Drill 1.5″ pocket holes on both ends

Cut one 2×4 @ 73 1/4″ ….. Drill 1.5″ pocket holes on both ends

Cut two 2×2’s @ 10″

Attach long 2×2 to the two short 2×2’s using pocket hole screws (2.5″ p.h. screws). Then attach 2×4 to the other ends of the 2×2’s using p.h. screws. You should now have a rectangle. See picture below….

2X4 AND 2X2'S jigged together to build a footboard

Cut one 2×2 to fit on top of 2×4 (approx. 76 1/4″). Attach using 2.5″ screws).

Sand this entire section, using a 60 grit and then a 220 grit. (I found it much easier to sand each section as I built it, rather than waiting til the end).

STEP TWO: Build the headboard

Cut two 2×2’s @ 51″

Cut three 2×2’s @ 73 1/4″ ….. Drill pocket holes on both ends

Cut eight 2×4’s @ 73 1/4″ ….. Drill pocket holes on both ends

Attach two 73 1/4″ 2×2’s to each end of 51″ 2×2’s using p.h. screws….creating a square. Mark 10″ up from bottom of square on both 51″ 2×2’s and attach 2×4 using p.h. screws, making sure top of 2×4 is flush with your 10″ mark on both ends. See picture below for more details….

Diagram of platform bed headboard

Measure 13 3/4″ up from top of 2×4 and mark on both 51″ 2×2’s. Attach remaining seven 2×4’s using 2.5″ p.h. screws. The bottom of the first 2×4 should be flush with your 13 3/4″ marking. Each 2×4 should be tight up against one another and attach as you go. See picture below for more details….

Diagram of board placement for headboard

Attach the remaining 2×2 (73 1/4″) to the top of the bottom 2×4 using 2.5″ screws. (Just like you did with the footboard–it should mirror the footboard)….

Headboard diagram

Note: At this point, you’ll want to move your project to the space where it will stay. It gets pretty bulky from this point on and would be very hard to move.

STEP THREE: Attach side rails

Cut two 2×4’s @ 80″ ….. Drill 1.5″ p.h.”s on each end

Attach to headboard and footboard using 2.5″ p.h. screws. Top of side rail will be flush with top and end of footboard and top of 2×2 on headboard. See picture below for placement of side rails….

Headboard with side rails attached

Once attached, it’s a good idea to use a square to ensure that it is square in each corner.

STEP FOUR: Attach the cleats

You’ll want your cleats to be 3/4″ less wide than your side rails. This allows space for the cross supports, that the mattress will sit on top of. So, for example, my cross supports are 3″ wide, so my cleats will be 2 1/4″ wide.

Cut your cleats (2) @ 80″ or a little shorter. Attach to side support, using 2.5″ screws, ensuring that the bottom of your cleat is flush with the bottom of your side rail…

two 2x4's screwed together to form a side rail

STEP FIVE: Build center support

Cut two 2×4’s @ 80″ ….. Drill p.h.’s on each end

Cut four 2×4’s @ 7 3/4″ …. Drill p.h.’s on one end

Center one 80″ 2×4 in middle of bed (on the floor). Attach to frame with 2.5″ p.h. screws.

Space out the four 7 3/4″ 2×4’s and attach to the bottom support board, using 2.5″ p.h. screws.

Attach remaining 80″ 2×4 to top of the four 7 3/4″ 2×4’s, using 2.5″ screws and for extra support attach to frame on both ends, using 2.5″ p.h. screws. Your center support should measure 10 3/4″ tall and should look like the picture below….

platform bed center support

STEP SIX: Add bed hinges

Your platform bed should be very sturdy, but just for extra support, it’s a good idea to add these hinges in each corner (4). I got these off of Amazon and found them very easy to attach….

brackets to hold bed together

At this stage, your bed should look like this….

platform bed frame

STEP SEVEN: Add cross supports

Rip nineteen 3.5″ wide strips @ 8ft from 4’x8′ 3/4″ sheet of plywood.

Cut to fit across your bed on support/cleats. Attach using 2.5″ screws

platform bed frame with center supports

Girl attaching screws to supports for platform bed frame

And here’s where we are now….

Platform bed frame built

STEP EIGHT: Paint/Stain…Finish

I found it easiest to stain first, let it dry and then tape off before painting.

I used Varathane Golden Oak Premium Wood Stain and Sherwin Williams Historic Charleston Green paint.  (Affiliate Link Included)

MCM master bedroom

MCM master bedroom design with platform bed as the focal point

I’ll be honest, having never built a bed before, I was a bit nervous crawling into this one for the first time. What if it doesn’t hold and we end up on the floor in the middle of the night!? But this thing is solid! She is not going anywhere!



As always, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to comment below. I love helping people build things they never imagined they could build!

Be sure to check back at the beginning of 2021 for the tutorial on how to build these Mid Century Modern nightstands donning both sides of the bed. Another easy build coming soon!!

Until next time,

Happy Building, Friend!!

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