Monday, October 11, 2010

Baby Doll Changing Table OR Bunk Bed for 18" Dolls

So.....we needed a baby doll changing table.  I think this is the best plan I could come up with, because it also doubles as a BUNK BED for your 18" dolls!!!!!

SHOPPING LIST: (You may have some of these pieces on-hand as SCRAP)

2x2:    4 - 18" long (legs)
1x4:    2 - 24" long (top sides of "tray")
1x4:    2 - 10.25" long (top ends of "tray")
1x2:    2 - 24" long (sides of bottom "shelf")
1x2:    2 - 10.25" long (ends of bottom "shelf")
MDF:  2 - 12"wide x 24"long (top "tray" bottom and bottom "shelf")

12 - 2" wood screws
countersink bit for the screws
2" nails (nail gun)
1" nails (nail gun) - for tacking on the bottom MDF shelf
wood putty to fill holes and knots
Paint or stain to finish your piece


1.    Mark your sizes on your wood and cut out your pieces.  (I always mark the wood with sizes AND where it is to be used (leg, side) so that I can move faster when building.

2.    Sand your pieces (on the ends to be joined, at least, if not completely).  You don't want to deal with edges that won't join cleanly and snugly.

3.    Pre-drill 2 holes in the TOP of each 2x2 leg, with 2 legs having the "holes" toward the left side (as pictured) and 2 legs having the "holes" toward the right side.  This allows the legs to be mounted flush against the 1x4x24" side rails.  (The 2x2 is pictured being pre-drilled, and the 1x4 is positioned vertically underneath it for "measuring".  Thanks to my husband for doing this for me - his hands are bigger!)

Your 2x2 holes should look like this:

(these are the holes that are pre-drilled toward the right side....)

(this picture shows the holes oriented to the left for left side and to the right for the right side:)

4.    After pre-drilling the 2x2's, screw them into the 1x4x24" side rails:
(Yes, this picture is of a later step, but I wanted you to see the side profile of 2x2's and side rail:)

5.    You should now have a "pair" of side rails, one set for each side.

6.    Next, nail your 1x4x10.25" ends between the pairs of side rails to complete the "tray".  You will be using 2" nails to nail from inside the tray, through the 1x4x10.25" into the 2x2 legs.  Nail 4-5 times, spacing as you go along.
(Once again, picture is of a later step...)

7.    You should now have a "tray" on legs!

8.    Turn the piece upside-down, so that it is resting on its tray top.  Place one of the MDF 12x24 pieces between the legs, center it so that it is flush on the side and end rails, and nail down into the 1x4 rails using 1" nails every 2 inches.  (You may use screws instead of nails for added stability.)  

9.    Now turn the piece on its side.  You need to mark each 2x2 leg (on the inside) at 2" from the bottom of the 2x2 leg.  This is so that the 1x2 side rails will have a line you can use to keep them square as you build.  Position the 1x2x24" between the 2x2 legs, and square with the line on each leg (the line is positioned at the bottom of the 1x2, to give you a 2" clearance underneath the piece.)

10.    Pre-drill the hole, and then drill through the 2x2 leg into the 1x2x24" rail, making sure to keep the rail square to the line you marked on the inside of the leg.  (This picture is looking DOWN onto the leg after it was drilled.)  Do this step to both sides of the piece.

11.    Now nail on the short 1x2x10.25" ends.  Nail down (as pictured) through the 1x2 into the 2x2 legs.  Do this step for each end of piece.

12.    Turn your piece right-side-up.  It should now look like this:

13.    Last, place the other piece of 12x24 MDF on top of the bottom shelf.  Make sure edges are flush with the sides and ends of the 1x2's, and then nail or screw through the MDF into the 1x2's, spacing about 2" apart.

14.  Fill all nail holes and knots in wood with wood putty.

15.  Sand piece well.

16.  Finish as desired with paint or stain.

(I have not filled my nail/screw holes or painted this piece an effort to get the plans out to you so that you may build this in time for Christmas!  Please forgive the lack of "finish"!)

17.  So this can be a changing table for your child's baby doll:

And when they outgrow baby can easily be converted to a bunk bed for their 18" dolls:

You simply need to add a "mattress" to the top for a baby changing table, and another mattress to the bottom for a bunk bed!  ****Instructions to make mattresses and pillows are located in my doll bed posting....please adjust the sizes according to the width and length of the piece here.  Or, you could just shove a pillow into the top like I did for the photo shoot! :)

You can see the bunk bed as built by reader's here:

Please feel free to use these plans to build furniture, for sale or for pleasure, but please do not sell the PLANS as your "own".  Please also give credit to me and link back here!  I hope you enjoy them!!
***I am NOT LIABLE for any plans featured here. Please take every precaution and use your own discretion to make sure these toys are safe for children to play with them.


  1. Oh Kristi, these turned out amazing! You are such an inspiration (and friend) to me! Ana

  2. These are awesome! I will be build this for my little girl for christmas! THANK YOU :)

  3. Ana: Thank you for the kind words! I'm SO GLAD that you like the plan. You are MY INSPIRATION for learning to build, so thank you! And of course, as always, a dear friend.... :)

    Michelle: I'm glad you like the plan, and I'm even MORE excited for your little girl! Christmas will be a DELIGHT!!! :)

  4. This is perfect! My daughter wants the canopy bed for her AG doll but it's $118. I'll stop at step 12, flip it back over, add strings of beads and bedding. She'll love it. Thankyou

  5. Elizabeth: I LOVE your blog, and I'm always "sewing along" with you, SO THANKS!!!!! LOVE your ideas!!!

    Tanya: You're SO SMART!! LOVE that canopy bed idea! Please send me a picture when you are done, or link to a blog if you have one! I would LOVE to see how it turned out!!!! :) Our babies are gonna be SO EXCITED this Christmas! YIPPEE!!!

  6. I followed your plan and the results were amazing. I gave the bunkbed to my neice for Christmas today and she was so thrilled. Can't wait to post the photos to share. Thanks so much.

  7. Marlene: sorry for the delay in responding...I'm SO HAPPY that the bunk bed turned out well! I hope that your niece enjoys playing with it! Please post photos....I'd LOVE to see your work!! :) Kristi

  8. You can see the photos of my bunkbed on my blog at

    Thanks again for the great plans Kristi.

  9. Marlene: AWESOME!!! Thanks for the link! I'll be taking a peek at your work.... :) Kristi

  10. Ours ended up a family project! Thanks so much. My blog post about it will go up tomorrow, I gave you a shout-out, stop by and let me know what you think,

  11. Emily-

    I'm really glad to hear that you built it, but even more glad that you included the whole FAMILY in the building "fun"!! I'll stop by to check out the progress! Thanks again! Kristi

  12. What an excellent furniture design.  I love this furniture design and look. The side table evokes the feeling of sweet simplicity.
    Platform Beds

  13. I just found this post and built the changing table for my daughter for Christmas. It turned out great! I made it a little taller than your design--about 23", because my daughter is almost 5. It was perfect for her.


Please leave a comment or a question - I don't bite and would love to write back, especially if you'd like help or have questions!!