How To Make a Custom Baby Gate

How To Make a Custom Baby Gate

Dabney Frake
Dec 19, 2014
(Image credit: Chris Loves Julia)

Chris and Julia's daughter was growing up fast, and they needed a baby gate for their soon-to-be-mobile child. Not thrilled with the readymade options they saw in stores, they devised this custom option for the top of their stairs. The plexiglass makes it less conspicuous than others out there, and the special size works nicely for their extra-wide staircase. See how they did it...

(Image credit: Chris Loves Julia)

What You Need


  • 1 8ft rounded edge 2×2 pine board
  • 1 8ft squared edge 2×2 pine board
  • 1 6ft 1×2 pine board
  • 1 8ft 2×3 board
  • 2 hinges
  • 1 latch
  • Screws
  • Wood filler
  • 1/4" plexi glass
  • Paint or stain (preferably the same color as your banister or door trim)


  • Table saw or router
  • Drill


  1. Cut each board to size, depending on your staircase or door opening. Chris and Julia's is 42″x34″.
  2. Routed out a channel in the wood that is 3/8″ deep and wide enough for the plexiglass to sit inside. (You can use a table saw for this, repeatedly running it through until the groove is wide enough, or a router if you have one.)
  3. Paint or stain your wooden frame parts, before you assemble the gate.
  4. Insert the plexiglass in the routed channels (but keep the protective film on), and screw the wood frame together. Pre-drill holes if you are worried about the wood splitting.
  5. Use wood filler for the screw holes and other imperfections, then sand it all smooth.
  6. Line up the gate in its proposed spot, and attach a 1×2 piece of wood (painted the same color as the wall) to the wall for support, and to help it swing freely.
  7. Attach the gate to the wood using your hinges.
  8. Screw the latch into your banister or wall.
(Image credit: Chris Loves Julia)

Many thanks to Chris and Julia for sharing this great project. You can see many more photos, and the process in more detail, over on their blog...

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