DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed


After the yard, the next thing we focused on was our bed. We’ve always dreamed of having a bed big enough for us to each spread out in without touching each other. Romantic, I know, but I’m sorry… our bodies radiate heat. I surfed the internet and pinned bed frames I liked but kept coming back to the same Pottery Barn King Bed. Being the cheapos we are, we didn’t exactly want to pay for the oh-so-trendy $1,600 name-brand bed I had my eye on.

I started searching DIY projects on Pinterest and came across a DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed – PERFECT! Turns out there are pdf instructions for all sorts of furniture at This website is awesome!

*UPDATE: I’ve gotten a lot of requests for links to the plans since they have become a little harder to find… here ya go!

I downloaded the pdf and sent it to Kurt hoping/praying he would be up for the challenge. Surprisingly, he was!

On the next available weekend we headed to Sam’s to buy our mattress. We wanted to have the mattress first so that we could adjust measurements accordingly. The mattress was $650 – not bad at all for a super comfortable pillow top king mattress and box springs. Next we stopped by Lowe’s with our list of supplies and picked out our pieces of wood. I was on the hunt for beautiful pieces with several knots and character – Kurt said that normally people don’t want those pieces. ARE THEY CRAZY?! Yes… yes they are. While we were at Lowe’s we found ourselves in a mini-dilemma – We couldn’t find non-pressure treated 4×4 for our posts. We called around to see if anyone in town carried those but we were out of luck. Lowe’s pressure-treated 4x4s were very green, so we headed to Home Depot and bought them there (once everything was sanded and stained you couldn’t see the difference). Typically pressure treated wood is used outdoors because of the chemicals that are used to preserve the wood, but after doing to some research I found that there have been fairly recent restrictions put on the types of chemicals that are used in commercial pressure treated wood which make it “okay” to use indoors IF you seal it properly. If you choose to used pressure treated wood, be sure to wear a respirator when sawing/sanding to prevent inhalation. ** Please note I am no expert – I recommend doing your own research on the use of pressure treated wood indoors. Non treated wood is, of course, the best option.**

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

We decided to add 3 inches to the height of the head board panels and 5 inches to the height of the foot board panels because I wanted our bedding to fall just below the foot board, not the other way around. We had a saw, a drill, and some wood glue…that’s it. No saw horses, no clamps, no nail gun or compressor. We’re not experts, we’re cheap, remember? We made do using our boat trailer as a sawhorse… DIYstinctly Creative!

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

It was an interesting process and we definitely learned how well we work together. I was gluing and squeezing pieces together as Kurt screwed and nailed the boards together. We lined up the vertical pieces of wood that would make up the head board and foot board keeping the location of knots in mind. Next we sandwiched the vertical pieces in between the horizontal pieces and started attaching them together. We used screws on the back of the bed and finishing nails on the front – we figured the screws would help pull and hold everything together better.

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

Next we attached the posts to the sides of the head board and foot board. Our bed was starting to come together!

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

The last pieces to attach were the toppers that covered the raw edges of the vertical pieces. Once these were attached, we filled gaps with wood filler, sanded, and moved onto the patio to stain! (Gotta love the landscaping :))

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

The other boards you see are the baseboards. We have to have baseboards on our bed because our dog is psychotic and attacks dust ruffles.

We used Rustoleum Dark Walnut stain and Minwax Helmsman Satin Spar Varnish to finish. It’s recommended that you use the same brand stain and top coat but the Minwax Dark Walnut stain was too dark so we decided to go with Rustoleum brand stain and use the Minwax topcoat we already had on hand. We applied the stain with a brush and after seeing how dark it was, we immediately wiped it off with a clean cloth so that the wood grain would show through. If you apply the stain and give it time to soak in, it will appear dark than what you see in our photos.

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

We attached the base boards to the posts using metal brackets.

DIY Poterry Barn Farmhouse Bed |

Kurt also created a center support for the slats below the mattress by screwing the leftover pieces from the posts to a 2×4 that extended the length of the bed. Our bed came out even more amazing and has given us confidence to do more DIY projects.

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed |

If we were to buy this bed from Pottery Barn it would have cost over $1,600. This bed cost us around $250 to build ourselves. The end result is amazing and we love our new DIYstinctly Made bed. The best part is we can say we did it together!


180 thoughts on “DIY Pottery Barn Farmhouse Bed

  1. We followed your plan (except making a bigger headboard)and even the stains to the brand & color but ours looks SOOO dark compared to yours, did you sand it down at all? This is just one coat of the stain and no varnish yet. We really like how you can see the knots in your pictures but you can’t in ours. We used the same wood (white wood) with tons of knots but you can’t hardly see them with how dark the stain looks.
    Thank you!!

    1. Oh no! How did you stain the wood? Did you apply it with a brush and allow it to soak before wiping clean, or did you apply and immediately wipe off? After seeing how dark the stain was when we applied it we immediately wiped it off which showed more of the grain. I’m sorry I didn’t have this information in the post before! Unfortunately, you may have to try sanding to lighten it up. If the sanding doesn’t come out evenly, you may have to sand to bare wood and re-stain 😦

  2. We didn’t wipe it off, no I didn’t see that part dang it! It there anything else we could do to lighten it up? We just did the head board so far but I don’t wanna make it so it doesn’t match the rest so I’m not sure what to do!

  3. I did some research online and found that you can try to use a wood bleach to lighten the stain, however, you may still run into the issue of having the finish be a different color than the other pieces unless you stain them all the same and then wood bleach. I’m so sorry this happened! Good luck, I’d love to see a picture when its all done!

  4. Have you had any trouble with your 4×4 posts? We had to use treated 4x4s as well and we were told not to stain or seal them for at least a month so that they would dry out. Ours has been done for about 3 weeks and I’m dying to stain it!

    1. We haven’t had any issues and we didn’t wait a month, but the posts we bought also weren’t soaking wet when we took them home. The only thing we’ve noticed is the wood filler has slightly squeezed out of the screw holes from the wood compressing, but you can barely even notice!

  5. I made a headboard like this one, but added in lights and attached a light switch at the bottom by the mattress and now I want to make the footboard and rails and I was curious did you lay 1x4s across the rails for the slats?

      1. Hey, Kirsten! We actually created a center support for our 1″ x 6″ slats using a 2″x 4″ board (the length of the bed) screwed to three 4″ x 4″ posts (cut to the same height as the as the running boards).

  6. Could you please tell me the measurements that you used for you head board and foot board. I love how you made it higher. My husband is in Iraq and I told him I am going to make this bed and he doesn’t think I can do it. The challenge has been excepted lol.

    1. Sorry I’ve taken so long to respond! I got a little busy there being pregnant and now having a newborn! The inner paneling of the footboard is 20.25 inches tall (roughly 30 inches tall finished) and the inner paneling of the headboard is 33.25 inches tall (roughly 59.75 inches tall finished). Good luck with everything, I hope it turns (or turned) out amazing!

  7. I love that you made the headboard and footboard taller. Did you make the paneling longer on them also?
    How tall is the headboard/footboard from the floor?

  8. Great looking bed! Me and my wife are in the same boat, looking for a larger bed and not wanting to pay the crazy prices. Do you have the build plans for this or where I can find them? I looked on but did not see this exact one on there. Thanks!

    1. We couldn’t find a complete king plan on Ana-White’s website so we referred to the full size and queen size bed plans and adjusted accordingly based on our mattress size.

  9. Hi there! I’m about to make this bed and have been hem hawing over the footboard height. I love the look of yours and want to duplicate it. Is your mattress is pillow top? I want to make sure I end up with the same space between the mattress and top rail of the footboard as you have. My mattress is about 14.5-15″ (best I can measure anyway lol).

    Thank you!!!

  10. My fiancé and I are about to try and make this bed… Do u have an email I could email u a few questions ? 🙂 thank u in advance!!!

  11. What type of hardware did you use to attach the side rails? Also, do you have/know the width dimensions? I have looked at the different Ana-White plans and realize hers are for a kind bed turned sideways. While I’m sure I could figure it out, a second set of numbers to compare mine to would put my mind at ease before I start cutting lumber. Thanks!

    1. I have added a photo of the hardware we used to attach the siderails to the headboard/footboard. The width of the bed from outer edge to edge is 84″ though it could probably be 82″ because we have a bit of a gap between the mattress and the siderails (we attached our siderails so they were flush with the outside of the posts).

  12. Thanks so much for your post, it looks great! My wife and I bought the supplies and have begun construction, but we do have one question. How did you securely attach the side rails of your base to the headboard and footboard posts? It seems difficult to make a secure connection, especially on the footboard side. Thanks!

  13. I love this!!! I wish I would have seen this before buying our bedset! Where did you get your bedding, it’s so cute! I’ve been looking for something like that that’s not too frilly for our country home 🙂

  14. hi there. I LOVE this bed and have decided this is the one id love my husband to build however when I looked at the website you mentioned to find the PDF instructions I cant locate this tutorial. can you attach a link? thanks

  15. Did you use your box spring or just adjust the bed rails to hold the top mattress? We have built a ton of Ana-White projects, and are starting this one. We like your version of this bed best! Thanks.

  16. and also, what is the overall height of the headboard and footboard (with toppers attached)? Thank you.

  17. It looks great! Super excited to say that I am making one as well! I do have some questions though, what size 4×4 did you use? (What length) and how tall did the paneling end up being to make the headboard/footboard taller?

    1. The bottom of our posts are buried into the carpet so I can’t get exact measurements, but I believe the length of the 4×4 posts on the headboard are 56 1/2″ and 27 1/4″ for the footboard.

  18. Hey there! I am currently making this bed and having issues understanding how to attach the side rails! Can you please elaborate on where exactly they are attached and how. I see many people placing them on the inside of the headboard but with not as much height in the footboard I don’t understand the placement. Thank you!

    1. You place the side rails the same distance from the ground on both the headboard and the footboard. The footboard is shorter in height but that doesn’t matter in terms of side rail placement.

  19. Thank you! One last question 🙂 how many inches did you add to the footboard and headboard and did you add them in the posts or panels. Thank you

  20. How is the bed holding up? Specifically, has the wood changed shape/size at all as it has dried more? I made a farm house table about a year and a half ago. Same wood, stain, etc. that you used here. I have been amazed at how the wood has shrunk and warped slightly since it was built – even with poly coat. I’ve been wanting to build a bed and am wondering how the wood will dry and possibly affect the shape and sturdiness of the bed. Thanks!

    1. The wood has changed since being indoors and drying out but the bed as a whole is still holding together great! If you are worried about warping, you can bring your wood indoors and let it acclimate to it’s new environment before building…We don’t mind the small changes that have occurred. The most noticeable parts are the vertical pieces that make up the headboard and footboard. My dad made the same bed and used tongue and groove instead and it looks awesome! And there won’t be any gaps that appear.

  21. How many coats of poly did you use after the stain? Wondering if one coat was enough or if I should’ve put 2 or 3?? Thanks! 🙂

    1. All products used are in the post along with how we applied them! If you use the same stain and apply according to the product label, it will turn out very dark. Also, the color of the bed looks much lighter in the outdoor photos than it does indoors.

      1. Thank you! I see now above where it is stated, I missed it the first time. 🙂

  22. I’m in love with this bed and wanting a king! My husband is wondering what you used to attach the 4×4 posts to the headboard and footboard?

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