Saturday, August 27, 2011

Repurposed Cot

Recently our little Squeak made the transition from the cot to her first big girl bed. I dutifully moved the cot into our study waiting to be dismantled and either stored or passed on, but kept finding reasons not to do it.
The thing is, I'm certain there will be no more babies for us. Kind of certain. OK, 99.99% certain. But every time I passed the study and saw our empty cot looking back at me forlornly (it really was) I'd procrastinate a little bit more.
So in the end I decided not to take it apart at all... and turn it into a desk. As you do.
It has turned out great and was extremely easy to do without modifying the cot and rendering it unusable once I get the courage to pass it on. Or use it again. Whatever.

WE USED:

* baby cot with a removable drop side
* mdf/particle board cut to mattress size
* blackboard paint

Our drop side had already been removed so all I had to do was adjust the base to the highest newborn setting.

I cut two sheets of thick mdf to fit snugly into the mattress base to provide a table top. I deliberately chose thick strong board to strengthen the desk should any small people climb, sit or stand on it (inevitable in this house).
The boards were painted with blackboard paint to create a chalkboard table top.

It was then easy to use hooks and suction hooks to create storage on the cot sides. I'd love to attach some small shelves for colouring books too.

The paper storage box is made from an empty muesli box, I cut the front to make the paper accessible then primed and painted it before super gluing it to a thick piece of card for extra strength.

On the left hand side we hung Bubble's whiteboard for doing her therapy homework using 3M removable hooks. The white shelves are a spice rack bought from the local Salvo shop for $5 and repainted, this is where we will store our small craft items like glue pots and beads.

The girls have been having a blast with it already :-)





120 comments:

  1. Absolutely LOVE this! What a great use of a crib when it is no longer needed!! I will definitely be sealing this idea!!

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  2. This is so awesome!!! What a great job and such vision! The chalkboard top is brilliant and all your little touches make it absolutely adorable!

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  3. this is a great way to re-use a drop side crib so it doesn't need to be tossed to the landfill, since they shouldn't be used as cribs anymore. good job!

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  4. Oh my goodness! This is SUCH a good idea. I'm totally doing this when I don't need my crib anymore. Love it!

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  5. AWESOME!!!! We have that same crib dismantled in our attic. Hmmmmm...If I could just figure out where to put it ;)

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  6. That's very cool. I wonder if you could glue some giant Lego sheets to the other side and then be able to change it to a Lego building area. Or else, just buy a bunch of these baseplates for the kids to put down on the chalkboard tabletop when they want to play Legos: http://shop.lego.com/en-US/Large-Green-Baseplate-626

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    1. lego... fantastic idea!!!!

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  7. what a fabulous idea! I am so happy I found your blog, I will be back for more! I'm over here if you would like to check out some things as well ;-) sweetelder.blogspot.com

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  8. We borrowed our crib from another family, but I am now SERIOUSLY thinking about looking for another one...this idea is pure genius!!! Little Man would love to have his own desk and it is just his size. Will have to rearrange for space, but it would be SO worth it! Thanks for the great idea...keep 'em coming. :-)!

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  9. Fabulous Idea!! Our cot is still up in the shed too.

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  10. VERY GOOD IDEA TO .... REUSE .I like it!!!


    pitsina crafts /Greece

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  11. That turned out so well. I'm thinking of stealing your paper storage carton idea for my daughter too.

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  12. wow! I already turned the changing table into a learning tower and I was wondering what I could do with the crib. Fantastic idea!!!

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    1. Hello, can you tell me more about your learning tower as I have an unwanted/un needed change table? Thanks in advance

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  13. This is brilliant! I'm sharing it on my crafty facebook page : )
    Jaimee @ craft-interrupted.blogspot.com

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  14. This is a fabulous idea! We just put the crib in the attic since I didn't know what else to do with it, now I know! And I love TechyDad's suggestion of putting Lego base plates on it! Thank for sharing!!

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  15. Smart, smart, smart! I have a crib hiding under the spare bed that I just hadn't been able to part with. Though we did rid ourselves of 99% of other baby paraphernalia. Recently, we found ourselves preparing to use the crib and wishing to get back all those other items... Someday we'll make this great desk!

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  16. Wow, thankyou everyone, Im a bit overwhelmed by the response to this project! I really appreciate all of the lovely emails and comments and would love to see photos if anyone gives this a try so we can feature them here!

    TechyDad - the LEGO sheet idea is fantastic, I love it!! I was going to cover the other side of the boards with felt to make felt story boards, but LEGO would be much more fun I think.

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  17. Ah-mazing Cazz!! That is such a cool idea.

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  18. Our youngest is 38 and we still have our crib in the attic. Now I know what to do with it! Craft/sewing room here it comes! Great idea! Perfect size for grandkids who love to craft with me! Granny of 10

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  19. what a AWESOME idea, sooo cute! Love it as I'm sure your kiddos do!

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  20. baby #2 will be here in 2 days...after he is done with the crib I am totally doing this...brilliant!

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  21. This is so great! We just moved my youngest to a big bed. Just yesterday I moved her empty crib to the playroom to get it out of the way before we get rid of it. Thank you for this awesome idea!

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  22. This is so creative and just the perfect size for kids. You've got me wanting to go out and buy a crib so I can do this. :)

    Thanks for sharing your idea--I'm glad I found your blog today.

    vanessa

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  23. Youre on a winner here....I also like how it preserves memories of the kids cot.....well done!

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  24. Uh oh...I have two cribs in my garage but only one will work for this project--and I already have a project in mind for which only that one will work!

    Now what am I going to do? Buy another crib off Craigs?!

    Awesome repurposing. I could care less if it looks like it used to be a crib. In my house, that's just another level of cool.

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  25. great idea, since no one wanted this crib as it was deemed 'illegal to give / sell'. good will wouldn't even take it. now that this was shown to me, we will definitely create this for my kids (since they ran out of space on their walls)
    thanks for the great idea!

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  26. Such a GREAT idea! I love it. I found it on Pinterest and was so happy about it. Hope you don't mind if I will share it tonight with my readers on my blog!

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  27. Love , Love, Love this idea! thank you for sharing!!

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  28. Wow, Amazing!! Looks like awesome fun for kids!
    absolutely love it!!

    Marta from Hawaii

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  29. I love this idea, just like everyone else!! I've been sad about the thought of not having a crib in my house anymore since my little one is about to grow out of it and into a toddler bed. Thanks, my boys will love this and I think that I'll be putting a LFGO table on the otherside!!

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  30. I love this idea! Thank you for the suggestions, I'll be trying it out!

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  31. Wow! This is a BRILLIANT idea! I`m speechless! And it looks so cute!

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  32. I love love love this! What a fantastic idea! The accessories are great and making the table top chalkboard ready is just amazing! Love it! Did I say that already?

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  33. I tried this and my son loves the result!His treasured cot is now a coveted desk!

    To see how I adapted this idea you may visit:

    http://dhanishtashah.com/?p=97

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  34. Okay, this is fate! I went by the dumpster today and there sitting outside was a whole white baby crib. Then I decide to look through Pinterest and here I see this beautiful chalkboard desk created with a white baby crib. Too funny. I am definitely making this for my grandsons! Love it!

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  35. This is by far my favorite repurposed crib project. So much so that I will be featuring it on my blog, Flippin' Factory, this coming Tuesday, September 21, 2011!

    Thank you so much for sharing!

    Tumaini

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  36. Working on an article about repurposing old cribs... LOVE your article. Do you mind if I use a few of your pictures and your idea/article within mine?? I will link to you! www.fremont.macaronikid.com

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  37. Hello! No problem at all, I'm always happy for people to share our projects and ideas. Looking forward to reading your article! Thanks for taking the time to comment.

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  38. Just wonderfull! I still canot re-use my son's crib since he's still spleeping in it, but in a few months might be able to do so... Can't wait... ;-)
    Greeting from Montreal,
    PaniTanguera

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  39. I LOVE this idea! I came across your post when googling what to do with drop-side cribs. I hate to just cut ours up and toss it in the junk... I've definitely been inspired by this post! New follower and can't wait to see more from your blog. :)

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  40. hi there love this!!! so creative. can you tell me what height that table top is set to? and also if yuo were to put something on the other side of it would you just lift it up and turn it around. sorry mummy brain day!

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  41. Thankyou for taking the time to leave comments and send emails everyone, I can't keep up with the replies but very much appreciate all the feedback! :-) Would love to see more cot conversions people have done so we can link them all up, maybe in a separate post.

    fejoia - we have the desk to set at our high setting (55cm from floor to tabletop). The boards we used for the top are easy to flip over, we just push them up from underneath so they pop out of the base. Hope that helps! :-)

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  42. this is such an innovative idea. kids will love this for sure.
    Seen On TV Products

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  43. i love this idea. working on it now that my youngest has moved out of the crib... i'm also thinking you could use those bed lifts to make it taller as the kids grow or for adult usage.

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  44. DO you have any pictures or is there a post on the Learning Tower you created with the changing table??? I'm dying to see!! Love this idea so much I shared w/my Mom & some friends.

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  45. Hi Kym, the Learning Tower conversion may have been posted somewhere else? I haven't done a project like that, it sounds wonderful though, would love to see it too!

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  46. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

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  47. I had to post this on my KyleighsCloset.com fb page! What a great idea, especially now that your suppose to take drop side cribs to the dump & they can no longer be donated!
    Thanks so much!

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  48. just wondering ... is there any reason why you put in a new board instead of just using the original crib board / mattress support? Wouldn't that work just as well?

    Oh, and what is the sitting heights of those chairs? Could you share where you got these? I'm thinking about getting two simple Ikea chairs but am not sure if those aren't too short?

    ... I love this idea! Can't wait for my little guy to move onto a big boys bed :)

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  49. Our cot had slats rather than a board as the base, so we just lifted those out and had mdf cut to size instead. The chairs measure 35cm from the floor to the seat part (65cm from the floor to the top of the back of the seat)and are the larger size wooden chair from the Jolly kids range. Hope that helps :)

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  50. thank you! I didn't realize not all cribs come with the same mattress support! lol ... and thank you for the chair height. That helps a lot! ...I'm the Anonymous from earlier today (forgot to sign in)

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  51. What an awesome Idea!! I have a crib sitting in my daughters room and I was ready to throw it away this way I could make good use out of it..Would love to know about this Learning tower idea as I have a change table I was also going to be throwing away soon.

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  52. Love it! My son is almost graduating to a big bed, so we can do something with his crib.
    Since i have 2 boys, the lego idea will be implemented.

    Thanks for posting this, originally I will dismantle it for tomato trellis and hubby said, "that will be the most expensive tomato trellis". Using it indoors for another year, till the paint, splatter, color is a good idea. Really, really love it.

    Thanks. Angie

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  53. Funny you say that Angelina, we used the side section we removed as a tomato trellis! :D

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  54. I love this idea! Thank you for sharing it! I can't wait to try this. I was thinking of using the extra side section as a twin headboard for my daughter's bed!

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  55. That's a great idea Jen! Would love to see photos if you make them!

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  56. Thank you, thank you. I have been trying to figure out what I could do with the crib. I re purposed the mattress as a coach to create a quiet reading corner. Now I can do a desk too! Brilliant!

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  57. Brillant idea, hope you dont mind we are reposting it on our Cotsguide website....

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  58. Not at all! :) Thanks for sharing ad taking the time to leave a comment.

    Rakell - you are very welcome, a reading corner sounds like the perfect use for the mattress!

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  59. absolutely brilliant! thanks for pointing me towards this from our fb network! **pinned**

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  60. This is FANTASTIC! I have loved this idea since I first saw it on Pinterest several months ago!

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  61. Thank you both for your wonderful comments! x

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  62. This is ADORABLE! It looks so expensive!! Great post!

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  63. Thanks Keri! We have used it for so many things, it's really versatile with the cot sides to hang things from. We have a long mirror attached to the back at the moment and the girls are using it as a pretend hairdressing salon :D

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  64. So did you just lay the board on top where the mattress would go? or did you screw, bolt, or glue it down?

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  65. Hi Susan and Lee, I just laid the mdf on top of the mattress slats, just as I would with the mattress if that makes sense. The board is sitting snuggly inside the recessed area flush with the side of the cot, so it's not able to move at all. To get the board out I just get underneath and push up through the slats. Hope that helps :)

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    1. Thanks. Also can I use chalkboard spraypaint? Or us it paint, paint?

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  66. I've never used the spray paint, so not sure sorry. The paint we used was just normal blackboard paint in a can.

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  67. Hi, Love your idea. Was wondering if this is a standard size crib, or whats also known as a mini crib? Thanks!

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  68. Hi there, it's just a standard size cot :)

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  69. Great job! I can see why this has become a popular post. So clever to turn the cot into a desk and blackboard paint the table part. Im sure there are lots of mums out there not willing to part with their cots but now have an idea of what to do with it. :-)

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  70. Yes, yes, I am stealing this idea! Found it on pinterest, and am happy it broughtw me to your blog. Lovely spot. I love the paper storage also, and fortunately our crib has a drawer underneath for extra storage! Now to find a way to make it fit in our house.....

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  71. totally ingenious, original and so so practical too - a fantastic project! thank you so much for the inspiration ;)

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  72. This is a really good idea - especially for the older cribs where the spacing on the sides is too far apart and no longer usable! I had to muse over the fact that I live in Texas, USA, and, as far as I can tell, you be in or near Australia, yet I have a couple of the exact same spice racks that you used in the desk!!!! Since we both both them at a used items store and they aren't the newest ones made, and they are probably not made by a big corporation that sends stuff all over the world, I just find it amazing to see that same item so far away! TFS!

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  73. I love love LOVE this idea. My son recently moved to a big boy bed and his cot sat disassembled in the hall for ages. I couldnt pass it on because the drop down side had broken from the little dare devil. I was going to turn ours into a veggie garden but this looks like a much better idea!

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  74. Great idea!! Where did you get your chairs?

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  75. This is a great idea and I think we will do this with my youngest girl's crib when she is done with it. Pinning this! Vicky from www.messforless.net

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  76. I love this! What a shame our cot is about to be put back into use lol, might need to see if I can pick up a cheap secondhand one though for the toddler because she would love this

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  77. G'day, I'm Rachel SAHM of 3yo girl, 4YO boy and 12 YO girl. This is such a clever idea. We have a cot which is being neglected in the shed. It was no good for resale as a cot, wear and tear issues, but is perfect for this project! THANKYOU ! THANKYOU ! THANKYOU ! Great blog by the way :)

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  78. brilliant, simply brilliant. My 18 mo. old is still using this amazing vintage crib but now I know what to do when he's out of it! thanks

    Trish
    www.LiveDecorated.com

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  79. I was trying to give my crib away to anyone that might need one, but i was told drop side cribs have been recalled. About that time i came upon your post via certifikid and thought it was a wonderful idea. Thank you!

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  80. How high is the desk surface on this? I am wondering if my kids are too big for it or not.

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  81. Love this idea! Thanks for sharing :)

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  82. Wow! I love this! And finally something MDF is really good for! It's sooooo heavy I hate working with it, but good point about kids sitting, standing or jumping on it. The weight will also stabilize the desk to reduce the chances it will get tipped over.
    So, so clever! I will be making one of these soon!
    Jan

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  83. I just finished this for my two girls. Lilly is 5 and Alayna who just turned 4 and they are both crazy about it....they want to spend most of their day doing whatever they can at their desk.
    Since my top rail would not support suction cup hooks or anything larger then a quarter, I decided to zip tie peg board to the back so that the kids can hang all their papers, scissors and other things in front of then and keep their work space cleaned up.
    Thank you again so much for sharing this idea. our family will get many years of great times out of it.

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  84. Love this! Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful idea. I'm so pleased that our cot can stay in our home longer even when we have no babies to sleep in it. Thank you!

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  85. Did you know that A Mum 'n the Oven is using your picture and idea as if it is her own? She deletes comments in which people try to link to this page and give you credit. It is posted on her Facebook page and probably even her web site. FB recently removed a lot of her content as stolen but she has already reposted one of your pics.

    This is such a great idea and post, I hate seeing you not get due credit for it

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  86. Thank you for taking the time to leave me a message, we are aware of that page and the way it is operating. Unfortunately polite requests to add link backs are being ignored which is a shame because the page is otherwise a great resource. Hopefully the page owner will do the right thing so we can all share ideas appropriately, which is the main aim of Blogging in the first place.

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  87. This is so cute. We are going to take down our old Jenny Lind crib and make this for my daughters kindergarten classroom. It will be a special nook for the children to use

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  88. I want to do this so badly! We donated one of our cribs and will still be using the other. Any suggestions on making this work using other materials? Thank you!

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  89. I love it! I have an old crib in the garage. Can't wait to make one. Thanks for sharing. I am a new follower. Hope to see you at True Aim!

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  90. I was thrilled to see this. My oldest is nearly 29 years old and I hand painted his crib in Noah's Ark!! It is up in the attic and I am about to get my craft room pulled together as my middle son is moving out!!! I am going to turn the crib into a desk for me and put the handpainted chest/closet in there to hold my material etc. Can't wait to use your idea!!

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  91. I made an old crib into a science/exploration center in my kindergarten class after I saw your idea! Now about ten other teachers in my district have them, too. THANKS for the concept!

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  92. Would it be okay to Pin this on my pinterest board? If not, I'll just save it to my favorites. What a fantastic idea. Your daughters have a very creative mama!
    Wendy:)

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  93. Of course Wendy :) Thank you for taking the time to message me, so glad you enjoyed our project!

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  94. Do you have an issue with a chalky mess? When you erase the chalk it creates dust that will end up in the carpet, any suggestions? And even if there was a rug or something beneath it will still be tracked throughout the house.

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  95. Hi Ashley, we use dustless chalk or chalk pens (the liquid kind). Hope that helps!

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  96. They are some very pointy scissors! :)

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  97. Those are my scissors, we do ABA and Occupational Therapy together each day :)

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  98. I really think you're a genius! Love you for sharing!

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  99. Instead of the lego idea - we are going to put trains on it for my little boys.

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  100. Brilliant!!! I am going to do this for sure :)

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  101. I am in the middle of trying to make part of the basement of the house we're renting a fun and usable space for my 3 year old son. I happened upon this post and jumped for joy - raced out to Home Depot and spent God knows how much on supplies. I even decided to "up the ante" a bit and painted a magnetic base under the blackboard paint. Well, I bought the supplies to do it, that is.

    So today I finally got down to business and I reassembled the crib. Here's where I'm stuck. I cannot figure out how to raise the base up as high as yours. It looks like this: http://www.cpsc.gov/PageFiles/76507/11343c.jpg

    The difference is that there is a mechanism that raises the mattress without raising the base. The slat at the bottom that goes across is going to be too low for leg room under the "table".

    Suggestions? Please? I've put quite a bit of money into the materials already - I hate to see it go to waste and I want to do this project!

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    1. Hi Marybeth :) I'm not at all familiar with the type of cot you are describing sorry, I'm not sure we have them here in Australia, but I'll do my best to help! Our cot has two settings, one set high for when the baby is newborn and one set lower for when they are older and sitting/standing up, the settings are adjusted by removing bolts holding the base into the cot ends and moving them up or down before re-tightening. This means there is a solid base with space underneath. With the cot you have described it sounds like the base stays at the same height and it's just the mechanism that moves? Would it be possible to unbolt the base, drill some holes higher up and then screw it back in at a higher level?

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    2. Hi Caz,

      If you peek at that link, you can see that one has the mattress raised way up as well for a newborn (I loved this feature!). The striped sheet is hiding the mechanism which works sort of like a lift - it's metal bars that raise the mattress base (support? grid? not sure of the terminology) vertically and yes, as you say, the base itself doesn't move.

      So in effect, you did answer my question. I'm glad to see I'm not fully crazy (not due to this anyway). In theory, the answer to your suggestion is "yes", I could drill. However, I'm not sure my husband is willing to let me play with the drill again, not after the Great Drywall Puncture of 2011 ;)

      Thank you for getting back to me!

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    3. Oh dear, you and I sound very similar with power tools! I'm sorry I couldn't be of more help, I hope you can find a way to make it work. It's a fun project and our girls got many years out of their desk. Beautiful cot by the way!

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  102. Hey there! This post inspired me to make a desk of my very own for my two year old boy who is now in a "big boy" bed! I was going to use his old cot but then we picked up a different one for free that is even better! I blogged about it here http://aliciabattersby.wordpress.com/2014/03/01/once-upon-an-upcycled-cot/ (note: I only started today so it is still a work in progress)

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  103. Hi,

    This is a fantastic idea. We would love to feature it on our site with a teaser and link to you for the full instructions. May be share this with our readers?

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    1. Hi Cassie, I'd love that, share away :) Thanks!

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