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Project

Under-the-Bed Organizer

Extra sheets, blankets, and towels are at the ready when stored in rolling drawers fitted with distinctive snap-on covers to keep dust at bay.

Materials

  • Measuring tape
  • 4 plywood boxes
  • Fabric
  • Scissors
  • Hammer
  • Fabric-to-wood snap kit
  • Spade bit and screws
  • Paint
  • Iron
  • Sewing kit
  • Plate-mounted ball caster

Steps

  1. Step 1

    To make drawers, measure the length and width of your bed. Build 4 plywood boxes (or have a carpenter construct them) to fit underneath; allow an inch between boxes and bed legs, and 2 1/2 inches between box tops and bed frame. Cut fabric 1 inch wider than each box on all sides.

  2. Step 2

    Turn sides of fabric in 1 inch. Iron, then sew seams in place. Using a hammer and a fabric-to-wood snap kit (available at hardware stores), screw a snap bottom to each drawer corner and to the center of each side. Affix corresponding snap tops to fabric, and secure to boxes.

  3. Step 3

    Paint as desired.

  4. Step 4

    Add a 1/2-inch, plate-mounted ball caster to each corner of all boxes: Using a spade bit, drill a hole deep enough to accommodate caster; insert caster, and secure with screws. 

  5. Step 5

    Attach 2 drawer pulls to front of each box.

  6. Step 6

    Cut fabric 1 inch wider than each box on all sides. Turn sides of fabric in 1 inch. Iron, then sew seams in place. Using a hammer and a fabric-to-wood snap kit (available at hardware stores), screw a snap bottom to each drawer corner and to the center of each side. Affix corresponding snap tops to fabric, and secure to boxes.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, January 2006

Reviews (13)

  • 27 Nov, 2013

    Great for extra storage. I watch to pick up used drawers thrown out to the curb. (only good condition). Always measure height you need first. Saves money from making them.

  • 27 Aug, 2012

    There is always problem. You have to decide between functionality and composition. I decided to rearrange my son's bedroom, to look like formula 1 track. I used red racing car bed and it looks amazing, but it's not that functional obviously. But my son is happier than ever. It was worth.

  • 5 Sep, 2011

    Great way to use drawers from old dressers, too.

  • 5 Sep, 2011

    WOW - This is a great idea for storing those bulky winter sweaters that always take up so much room everywhere else.

  • 7 Sep, 2010

    I wasn't exactly sure where to find the fabric to wood kit at first and after searching for just a short time I found several bits of info on them.
    http://www.generaltools.com/Products/Screw-Snap-Fastener-Kit__1267.aspx

  • 7 Sep, 2010

    I wasn't exactly sure where to find the fabric to wood kit at first and after searching for just a short time I found several bits of info on them.
    http://www.generaltools.com/Products/Screw-Snap-Fastener-Kit__1267.aspx

  • 4 Sep, 2010

    This was well worth reading, if only to learn that there is such a thing as a "fabric to wood snap kit." This could be good to know for future needs that may arise. Thanks, Martha!

  • 3 Sep, 2010

    An old suitcase also works well for this kind of storage. I have one with a fabric covering that zips open, and, because it's luggage it slides easily on any surface.

  • 3 Sep, 2010

    I saw a under-bed drawer like this at Ikea last weekend, and it was $50! My first thought was "we could make this!" Plus, I really like the idea of the cloth cover on the top, since it's easy to get dusty under the bed. Great inspiration... thanks!

  • 3 Sep, 2010

    Self adhesive plastic furniture sliders work well on carpet.

  • 3 Sep, 2009

    if you can't find snaps, you could use velcro strips instead.

  • 31 Aug, 2009

    For hardwood floors, I would recommend using felt on the bottoms instead of hard, rolling casters.

  • 11 Jun, 2008

    I did this a few years back using a random assortment of drawers found curbside (you can paint them or enjoy the mishmash) rather than spend time constructing a plain box. I didn't add the casters, and it's been perfectly fine to pull in and out on a daily basis. You can remove the metal brackets sometimes found on the bottom pretty easily to avoid snagging carpet or scratching wood floors.