How to Build a Murphy Bed

Murphy, or fold away, beds are a terrific option for those who require extra beds, but have limited space to store them. These beds are incorporated in cabinets that can suit any room. Murphy beds are neatly folded and tucked into closets while not in use. Although rather expensive to buy, they're not so expensive to build yourself [source: Buzzle]. So go on and read this article, and learn how to build a Murphy bed.

Materials needed:


  • Wood storage cabinet
  • MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard)
  • 1-by-12-inch pieces of wood
  • 2-by-8-inch pieces of wood
  • Heavy duty hinges
  • Saw
  • Screws
  • Wood glue
  • Casters

Here's what to do:

  1. Buy a wood storage cabinet a few inches (centimeters) longer and wider than a mattress.
  2. Select the spot on the wall where you want to mount the Murphy bed.
  3. Find the studs in the wall.
  4. Place the cabinet against the wall just above the baseboard, and drive 3-inch wood screws into the back of the cabinet and into the studs. The screws should be 6 inches (15.2 centimeters) apart.
  5. Measure the size of the mattress and build a frame. Cut two pieces of 1-by-12 wood the length of the mattress. Cut two more pieces the width of the mattress. Screw the corners of the frame together with wood screws.
  6. Make the two ledger boards. A ledger board is the board that attaches the bed to the wall. Cut two pieces of a 2-by-8 a few inches (centimeters) longer than the frame.
  7. Attach the ledger boards to the length of the frame with the extra length protruding on one end.
  8. Cut the MDF to the size of the frame. Screw it to the bottom of the frame. Place the screws at 7-inch (17.8-centimeter) intervals.
  9. Put casters on the four corners of the frame.
  10. Place the bed frame against the cabinet, with the ledger boards inside the cabinet. Attach the ledger boards to the cabinet with the hinges. Make sure the hinges are strong enough to carry the weight of the bed [sources: DIY, London Murphy Beds].
  11. Place the mattress into the frame and you're ready to lay down on your Murphy bed.