People keep asking us how we like our home since we moved back in as a family of five.
It’s great. I’m enjoying the space and the view and the kids really like it. The floor plan works well with young kids. Room enough for them to find a quiet corner if they want to play on their own but close enough that they’re within ear shot. I hope we are here for quite a few years.
How do you fit three kids in a two bedroom condo?
Right now our older two share the second smaller bedroom and the baby sleeps in a travel crib in our master bedroom. The boys bedroom is big enough but it’s not big. If that makes sense. I’ll do a little tour of it soon but today I wanted to share the boys new (to us) bunk beds.
Originally we had one second hand IKEA Ovre child size bed that our oldest slept on. We stashed a mattress under it during the day and the middle boy pulled it out and slept on it at night. The IKEA child size beds are great if you live somewhere small. The beds are roughly 66 inches by 30 inches – bigger than a full crib but smaller than a twin bed. The beds are long enough for an average size child to use until they are eight or nine years old.
Our second bedroom could fit a twin size bunk but I wanted to leave more floor space open for the kids to play. A twin bunk would dominate the room and when you live in a smaller home you need to keep your options open for kid activities.
The faux trundle bed worked but it wasn’t ideal. Being directly on the floor isn’t great for mattress health. Plus, the kids had bunk beds back in the Isle of Man and really liked them.
After reading about 5 kids, 1 condo’s toddler bunks we contacted the builder Owen Thomas. As luck would have it Thomas told me Adrian was moving to a bigger bunk for his kids and their toddler bunks were up for sale. Lucky us!
The beds have a surprisingly simple hack to make them bunks. The bases are two IKEA Gulliver children’s beds (they appear to be discontinued on the IKEA Canada website). The bunk supports were so easy to piece together that I did the whole thing myself by laying the beds on their sides to attach the supports. I won’t give all the details away both because it’s not my handiwork and also, don’t want to be sued, but you can see in the photos the height of the bed and where a ladder was added. I do love a good IKEA hack.
These are not forever beds.
It would be great to use this bunk for four or five years. I could see us moving our oldest into a lofted single bed once he needs more space. The baby and our middle child could then use the toddler bunks for another few years. After that, who knows. I don’t think we have the ceiling height for a comfortable triple bunk but we could move all the kids into the master bedroom and fit a twin bunk and another twin bed in there. Or we could rearrange our master bedroom to include some office space and put our oldest in our den. We’re lucky to have options both because of our space and because we have all boys.
Have you made any creative sleeping spots for a small space? If for some reason we thought all our kids needed their own room, we could even put a Murphy bed in our living room. Fluid sleep spaces aren’t really the norm here in North America but I remember seeing a piece about a Scandinavian family that lived in a one bedroom and the parents had a fold out bed in the living room. And living downtown I have met a local family of five that is making a one bedroom work.
Love this IKEA hack of the Gulliver child’s bed into a captain’s bed with storage. Parent in Brooklyn did it for his two year old. Great space saver.
IKEA Expedit lofted child size bed hack. Cozy bed and storage.