How to Put a Sleigh Bed Together

by Kaye Morris

Whether you bought a new sleigh bed or you moved and need to reassemble it, you may have questions about how to do it right. Sleigh beds from different manufacturers will vary slightly in their assembly, so it's a good idea to read the instructions and keep them for future reference. If you've lost the instructions, you can follow these general guidelines. Assembling a sleigh bed is a job that is easiest to do with two people, so grab a friend before you get started.

Assembling a Sleigh Bed:

Shop Sleigh Beds

Shop Sleigh Beds ▸

  1. Line up all the pieces.

    Before connecting any parts, line them up in the bedroom in the approximate spot you want the bed to be. It will be difficult to move it after it is assembled. Lean the headboard against the wall and lay the sides and footboard on the floor in place. Make sure you have all the screws or bolts that came with the bed, and get a screwdriver.

  2. Install brackets on the headboard and footboard that will hold the side rails.

    If your bed came with the bracket hardware already installed, skip this step. The brackets attach to the bottom inside of the headboard and footboard, and are used to attach the rails that run the length of the bed. Choose a height for the brackets based on how high you wish your box spring to sit. Measure that distance from the bottom of each side of the headboard and footboard and draw a line where the bottom of the bracket will rest. Screw brackets into the headboard and footboard with wood screws. The most efficient way to screw the brackets into panels is by using a power drill.

  3. Attach the side rails to the headboard.

    Set the first rail in the bracket on the headboard and screw the rail in place. Don't completely tighten the screws. The rail should have a lip that runs the entire length; make sure the lip is inside the bed frame and is at the bottom of the rail. Now attach the second rail to the headboard.

  4. Attach the side rails to the footboard.

    Have your helper stand up the footboard while you attach the side rails to it, without tightening the screws all the way. Once both rails are in place and all the corners are square, you can use your screwdriver to tighten the screws completely in all four corners.

  5. Attach the slats or metal rails.

    Place the support slats across the frame, resting them on the lip of the rails. If the side rails have holes to attach the slats with screws, be sure to use them; these will ensure that your bed is sturdy and secure. If not, place the slats closer together at the head and mid-section of the bed because that is the portion of the bed that will regularly support the most weight; the slats can be spaced further apart at the bottom of the bed.

  6. Place your box spring and mattress on the bed frame.

    If you are using a bedskirt, but it onto the box spring before putting the mattress in place. You can now add bedding and sleep on your sleigh bed.