A Trio of Hanging Beds For A Room Shared By Three

published Jan 7, 2011
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Names: Jeremiah, Samuel, and Augustine
Ages: 6, 4, 2
Location: Texas

Awhile back we featured a room that took all of us here at Ohdeedoh by surprise. Jaws were dropping, we were forwarding the link as fast as we could to friends and family — we were flat out amazed. We’ve since gone behind the scenes and today you can see more of this room filled with color, hanging bunk beds and the opportunity for extreme fun!

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)
(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

When we spied the work of Marian and her husband, we were gobsmacked. We spent the better part of the next few days stalking Marian’s blog, The Bumper Crop, to learn more about their family and this room. We grew to love this large family, their projects and the daily ongoings that Marian shares with the world. The boys’ room is spectacular, but more than just a room, it has created quite a bond between their boys.

Even though Neil and I both enjoy projects and have fun building and decorating, it doesn’t compare to the joy of putting the boys to bed at night in the same room… Their voices singing and praying together, their whispers long after the lights go out… and the not-so-whispered demands from the youngest to the oldest for “more song!”

Marian told us more about how this room came together – we promise you’ll fall head over heels for the space and the family before you know it!

What was your inspiration for the room?
After close to a year of looking for bunkbeds, and lots of brainstorming about built-ins, I saw Ana White’s hanging daybed. I loved the rustic look and simplicity of the project. Knowing that the beds would take up a lot of space, I wanted to keep the rest of the room simple. I love the combination of modern and vintage, so I tried to have a bit of both in their room. The boys are all so different and have varying interests, it would have been hard to pull of a “themed” room. The colors evolved from the Kideko poster… all three of them rock! I wanted to give them a space that was fun and inviting, and a space that would grow with them.

What is your favorite element of the space?
The lights! My husband took out all the wiring and replaced it with push on night lights, stretching the wire so that the button would be on the outside. We simply unscrew the fixture and replace the batteries as needed. I think the lights were the first thing I had picked out. We even bought them not knowing how we would make them work! My husband did not want to wire three lights into the wall and install light switches!

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

What was your biggest challenge overall?
The beds are heavy! Mounting them on the wall was a challenge. We screwed a brace into the wall to prop them up and had makeshift legs until they were properly secured. Most of the weight is held by the lag bolts that are screwed into each stud in the wall. The ropes are added security and so are the ladders that are also bolted to the beds. My husband was the first one up on the beds to test them out! The boys are not allowed to jump on the beds (they can jump on ours!) or jump from bed to bed. They also have bed rails that keep them safe.

What do your friends say?
Our friends love the room, and the boys love to tell their friends that their beds hang from the wall!

What is your proudest DIY in the room?
I would say the beds. My husband would say the lights. And the boys would say the stool they got to prime and paint!

Do you have any advice for families looking to make a unique space for their kids?
Assess what your needs are for the space. If your kids don’t need every toy in plain sight, put some away. When it comes to kids’ rooms, less is definitely more. The boys come up with all kinds of games and spend so much time reading in their room, rarely using toys. They don’t need desks because we have a school room. Their toys are stored in the playroom. Their room really only needed beds, so we could get creative. This helps to simplify a room and is great for cleaning up! The simplicity of the space really inspires their imagination- one day it’s a submarine, the next a jungle, and sometimes a jail! Look for accessories outside the kid’s section- most of the items in this room are not designed for kids. And if you have multiple kids in one room, remember that you have to multiply every expense, in my case, by three! I would see something that I really liked that might have been an ok splurge for a room for one child, but not for three!

What did you learn in the process of hanging 3 beds in one space?
I learned that it is worth it! There were so many unknowns in this project. I was nervous that we would do all the work and then it would look awful. I wasn’t sure about the space between the beds. And even after the beds were hung, I wasn’t sure about colors! It really came together as we progressed through the work, and I learned that you don’t have to have a perfectly laid out room design before you go for it–so many of the details came to be as we worked!

Do you think your kids will outgrow the look (and if they do, can we move in)?
One of my goals was to be able to easily change the look of the room in the future as they grow. I feel like we accomplished this by keeping it simple and using accessories to add color. In the future, changing out pillows and wall decorations will result in a completely different feel to the room- and the grey goes so well with so many colors. We will probably add a bulletin board or two for them to be able to personalize it however they want.

With three children in the same space, how do you determine what actually comes into the room so they don’t feel overwhelmed or cluttered?
Our kids don’t have many toys to begin with. We have pretty strict boundaries as far as what comes into the house, for many reasons, but mainly to avoid clutter! We store all of their toys in the playroom in bins. When they want to play in their room they take a bin in there and return it to the playroom when they are finished… most of the time! I am thinking about keeping their legos in their room because they spend so much time building and they sometimes want to save their creations for a while. I would probably organize my house differently if we lived somewhere with long winters, but the truth is that the boys spend a lot of time outside!


Wall color: Creek Bend by Behr
Table, basket, and bed linens: Ikea
Lamp: Vintage garage sale find
Frames and clock: Target
Stool: Ikea, spray painted with Rustoleum
Hardware, rope, and lights: Home Depot
Poster: Kideko
Ladders: my dad made them, painted antique white
Wall art: vintage

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Thanks, Anderson Family! Readers, don’t forget to visit them at The Bumper Crop!

(Images: Marian Anderson and family portrait by Jenny Rigney)

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