Oh the endless things you can do with pallets! A swing bed has been on my “Mike To-Make List” for some time (oh how long that list is! 😉 ). And we’ve had some pallets sitting in the yard just waiting for a good DIY project. (So really I’m just trying to help Mike get things cleaned up outside…)
Swinging has to be my all time favorite childhood activity. And swinging while laying down? A lazy girl’s dream come true! And how dreamy this bed is. I could easily spend my days here, swinging the summer away. (That’s definitely wishful thinking! Even though it looks like that’s what I do in these pictures, Caitlin took these photos after the boys were in bed. The only time we seem to be able to get anything done!)
There are a number of ways you can make these swing beds. They can be as simple as just using a pallet and rope. This DIY is for the specific way we made ours, which was to fit a twin size mattress. It still was a very simple and quick project, even with a few extra steps.
What you’ll need:
- 2 x 4 lumber (we used three 8-foot pieces)
- measuring tape
- mattress or cushion (we used a standard twin mattress)
- 2-3 vinyl zippered mattress covers*
- Measure the size of the mattress or cushion you’re putting on the pallet and figure out how many pallets you’ll need to use to fit your mattress on. We used 2 pallets and added additional pieces in the middle to get the right length for ours. (We added 12 inches to the middle. The total length of our pallet was 80 inches.) Take into account the space you’ll need for the rope at the ends.
- Slide the 2 x 4’s through the inside of the pallets, one on each inside edge of the pallet and one through the middle.
- Screw the 2 x 4’s to the sides and middle of the pallet.
- If needed, add additional boards from another pallet to your main piece, we added two boards from a broken down pallet to the middle of ours.
- Cut off 2 x 4’s that are hanging past the length of the pallets.
- Drill holes in the four corners of the pallet, both the top and bottom boards of the pallet. Make sure the hole is big enough for the rope to fit through.
- Thread the rope through the hole, making sure rope goes under the bottom of the pallet and around the 2×4 (see picture below). Tie securely.
- Tie rope securely to tree.
- Enclose mattress in vinyl covers. Place on top of swing.
*Not necessary, but will keep your mattress dry & protected
**We used a solid braid pro-grade rope. Look for a rope that won’t rot or break down easily and that has a high working load limit – 700 pounds or higher would be ideal. They have a big selection in home improvement stores, like Home Depot (where ours is from).
We also covered our mattress with 2 vinyl zippered mattress covers to protect it from moisture and bugs. Ugh – these bugs. I think I’ll actually enjoy using this swing more come fall – with cooler air and less bugs around! (And while we’re talking about summer, I’ll just mention that I realize I have dirty feet in these pictures…I like to refer to them as “summer feet”. Cause I run around in sandals or barefoot all summer.).
Enjoy those lazy days of summer!