Farmhouse Bed (California King Size)

Submitted by Ana White on Thu, 06/20/2019 - 13:09
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The blog favorite Farmhouse Bed, now in California King! This bed plan is a must read, as the construction is a tad different to accommodate no 4x4 posts and an easier method of joining the siderails with the headboard. Special thanks to JME Blog for their marvelous photos!

blue farmhouse bed
white farmhouse bed
black farmhouse bed
farmhouse bed dimensions california king
80 1/2" x 91" x 57"


Shopping List

9 – 1×8 boards, 8′ Long

1 – 1×3 board, 8′ Long

2 – 2×6 board, 8′ Long or Stud Length (doesn’t matter)

13 – 2×4 boards, 8′ Long or Stud Length (doesn’t matter, you may need more or less depending on if you have a box spring or not)

3″ self tapping wood screws

2 1/2″ self tapping wood screws

2″ self tapping wood screws

1 1/4″ nails for a brad nailer

Common Materials
wood conditioner
paint brush
Cut List


  • 4 – 1×4 @ 72 1/2″ (Panel Trim)
  • 2 – 1×3 @ 30″ (Ends of the Panel)
  • 9 – 1×8 @ 30″ (Main boards in the Panel)
  • 2 – 2×4 @ 34 1/2″ (Inner Leg for Headboard)
  • 2 – 2×4 @ 54″ (Outer Leg for Headboard)
  • 1 – 2×4 @ 78 1/2″ (Top of Legs and Panel for Headboard)
  • 1 – 2×6 @ 80 1/2″ (Top of Headboard)
  • 2 – 2×4 @ 10″ (Bottom Leg Piece for Headboard)



  • 4 – 1×4 @ 72 1/2″ (Panel Trim)
  • 2 – 1×3 @ 15″ (Ends of Panel)
  • 9 – 1×8 @ 15″ (Main Boards in the Panel)
  • 4 – 2×4 @ 21″ (Legs)
  • 1 – 2×4 @ 78 1/2″ (Top of Legs and Panel for Headboard)
  • 1 – 1×6 @ 80 1/2″ (Top of Headboard)


Siderails and Frame

  • 2 – 2×10 @ 87 1/2″ (Siderails)
  • 2 – 2×4 @ 88 1/2″ (Side Cleats)
  • 8 – 2×4 @ 69 1/2″ (Joists, you can use less if you have a box spring, may need more if your mattress is flimsy or you choose not to add plywood to top)
  • Optional plywood on top of joists
Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Circular Saw
Brad Nailer
Power Sander


Step 1

Front of Headboard Panel. Lay out the panel pieces on a clean level surface. Take a measurement of the total length and cut your trim boards to this measurement (approximately 78 1/2″). Then fasten the trim pieces to the panel as shown above. Use the 1 1/4″ nails and glue. Attach from the back to hide your nail holes.

Step 2

Back of Headboard Panel. In the same manner as step 1, fasten the back trim pieces to the headboard. This is shown above. Use glue and 2″ nails. This will be the back of the headboard, as your nail holes are showing.

Step 3

Inner Leg. Predrill and countersink your screws, attaching the inner leg to the headboard panel as shown above. Use glue and the 3″ screws.

Step 4

Outer Leg. Fasten the outer leg to the inner leg, using the 3″ screws and glue. Again, use the countersink bit. Keep top and outside edges flush.

Step 5

Step 6

Bottom Leg Piece for Headboard. Use the 2″ screws and glue to attach the bottom leg piece. Countersink your screws. You may need to shorten or lengthen the bottom leg piece, depending on the thickness of your side rails. Take a measurement of your side rails before cutting this piece.

Step 7

Footboard. Except for the changes in the legs as shown above, the footboard will be assembled just like the headboard. The footboard leg pieces are identical in size and there is not bottom leg piece.

Step 8

Siderails and Frame. Begin by building the frame using 3″ screws and glue. The above joists are shown spaced every 12″. You may need to add more if you are not using a box spring (standard maximum slat spacings is 6″), and you could possibly get away with less if you have a good box spring. Remember, king beds often have 2 box springs.
After you have built the frame, attach the side rails to the frame. Keep the front edges flush. The bottom edge of the frame will overhang the siderails by 5/8″. Please note that you can adjust the height of the frame to suit your needs, higher for no boxspring, lower to accomodate a box spring.

Step 9

Attaching the siderails to the Headboard. You will only need a few screws on each side rail to attach the siderails to the frame because the bottom leg piece holds the weight. Predrill and countersink your screws, using 2 1/2″ screws. Do not use glue here.

Step 10

Attaching to the Footboard. Fasten the bottom frame joists directly to the footboard panel as shown here. Use the 2″ screws, but no glue.

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill any visible nail holes with wood filler and sand and finish as desired.


zgporter (not verified)

Sat, 07/02/2011 - 14:04

Here is my list (a little different than the one above)...

13 2x4x8
5 1x8x8
8 1x4x8
2 1x6x8
2 2x10x8
1lb 3" screws
1lb 2.5" screws
1lb 2" screws
1 bottle of wood glue
= $145

I have the finish nailer and nails. I let you know how it goes.

Guest (not verified)

Mon, 08/01/2011 - 14:48

Just Wondering, in the pics above i can't see the seems of where the 2 2x4 posts where put together to make each bed post? Where 4x4 used or is just hard to see b/c of the picture quality?

For that matter, can i use 4x4's?

Thanks for the tips in advance, i'm in the planning and gathering materials stage right now. Should get underway the 2nd weekend of Aug.

Happy Staining!

Christine (not verified)

Sun, 10/09/2011 - 12:28

My husband built the twin size version and now we are struggling to figure out what color to paint it for my sons room. What color is the blueish/ green color that you used for the picture for the king size bed? Any suggestions? Thanks

Lora (not verified)

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:02

The link to JME blog is broken and I am wondering if you remember how she finished this bed. My Farmhouse bed is together and ready to be painted! Thanks Ana!


Sun, 10/30/2011 - 20:52

how would you recommend adding that 3rd leg to support the split box spring? Im building the king size with the 2 twin box springs and want to support it ,as my mattress is very heavy.
Im wondering what to tie into at the head board?

also I want to use the 4x4 and not 2x2's . do you recommend bulking up the side rails and the joists.

thank you very much.


*jencon* (not verified)

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 09:03

This is going to be my first build. I have a question..... I just purchased some pine lumber and my husband says that in a few months this wood may shrink leaving gaps in my head and footboard (like a fence tends to do). Anyone that built this bed, do you find this happen to you??


Sat, 07/13/2013 - 07:27

Hi from Israel,
I'm done building my first ever bed. It was a little expensive (Around 350$).
I had a lot of fun; I made some changing in the connection between the bed frame and the footboard.
I also had to convert the measurement to centimeter and to the European mattress measurement.
Again thanks a lot.
Muly Tubin


Sun, 04/06/2014 - 11:32

I converted the measurements for the cut list to the measurements needed for a standard king. still having trouble with making this in to a narrowed shopping list. could some one help?


Wed, 09/24/2014 - 00:18

I'm planning to build the Farmhouse for a Cal King Bed.  I'm buying a memory foam mattress without a box spring and need to have good slat support running from rail to rail.  For that reason, would it make sense to run the joists between the headboard and footboard (rather than rail to rail)?  Would this be just as sturdy?

Many thanks for your thoughts.
Best, Jeff


Wed, 09/24/2014 - 09:21

I made that exact change on a king size bed that I was not using boxsprings, and it has worked just fine for me.  If I remember right, I ran an additional 2x6 on the headboard end to attach my north/south (headboard to footboard) joists.  


However, I have an innerspring mattress, so I have no idea whether the small gaps that result from using slats is okay fo a memoryfoam mattress (you may want to check before getting too deep into your build).  If slats/gaps aren't good for the memoryfoam, you can top your rails with plywood as support - and if you do this, you can keep your joinsts running rail-to-rail if you like.  You can drill some holes into the playwood for breathability if needed - I have no idea whether that's desirable for a memoryfoam mattress.

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