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Living Space: Bunk beds have grown up in style, function

By Kathryn Weber
March 6, 2014 at midnight
Updated March 5, 2014 at 9:06 p.m.

Lots of guests headed to your vacation home for the weekend? Attractive, contemporary bunk beds might be the ideal solution for children or adults.

Bunk beds used to be the domain of the under 7-year-old crowd but not anymore. In recent years, bunk beds have grown up in style and function. More than just a way to create additional floor space, bunk beds for adults can also offer privacy and even a touch of luxury.

Adaptive style

Nowadays, many bunk beds are built in. This allows greater design detail and creates a more finished, refined look. Far from being the twin beds of old, contemporary bunk beds can be more loft style and use a full-size, or even a queen-size mattress. Upscale features like brass steps, metal rails and special lighting help create a cozy, luxurious retreat for both the young and the young at heart.

Bunk beds for adults or teens offer a great way to accommodate more overnight guests, an especially helpful feature for vacation homes. Lake, mountain or beach getaways can always use extra beds, so you can truly declare, "The more, the merrier." Depending on the size of the room, you can add four or even six beds to accommodate a crowd.

Efficient design

Bunk beds for kids are often free-standing and stick out into the room. One of the hallmarks that sets adult bunk bed design apart is to align the beds on one side of the room. This way, they blend into the decor and free up space in the room.


When considering adding adult bunk beds in your guest room, look carefully at the space available. A standard-size room is suitable for two bunk beds, while a larger room, such as an upstairs family room, is a good choice for multiple beds.

Safety is another consideration. Whether children, teens or adults will be using the beds, it's important that safety features such as rails are included. Watch overhead space as well.

Adequate clearance to sit up reduces the chance of a bruised head. If you plan to buy bunk beds instead of creating built-ins, look for beds manufactured for adults, as these will be able to accommodate the extra weight of an adult.

Now it's time to give those bunk beds some style. Decorate each as its own individual space. Include stylish throw pillows, lighting, artwork and a throw at the foot of the bed.

A recessed shelf or wall-mounted model could hold a glass of water or a book. Add a hook to hold bathrobe, and lastly, consider privacy by adding a curtain for screening.

Kathryn Weber is a home and decorating columnist and publishes the Red Lotus Letter feng shui ezine. For more information, contact Weber through her website,



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