How can I turn a mattress into a couch?
April 30, 2009 9:27 AM   Subscribe

I'm trying to create a convincing sofa/chaise out of a twin mattress, particularly one that resembles DWR's Vegas couch. I'm pretty lacking in crafting talent, but am willing to try anything.

I really like Design Within Reach's Vegas couch for our office. The problem is, we already have a bed for me to sleep on - a twin tempur-pedic that I love. But I'd really like my office to look professional during the day. Any suggestions of how to turn a twin mattress into this?
posted by arnicae to Home & Garden (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I think you'd be better off posting around town and seeing if anyone is willing to trade you a piece of furniture for your mattress. This will save you from ruining a perfectly good mattress (and possibly, your electric bread-knife).
posted by hermitosis at 10:00 AM on April 30, 2009

Not sure about how to build it into that couch in particular. You'd need to build a frame for the mattress, plunk the mattress inside of the frame, and big square foam cushions on the side. This is a DIY couch for a similar idea - I think you could take these plans and tweak them into a version of the DWR couch.
posted by barnone at 10:05 AM on April 30, 2009

The problem with this is that a sofa made out of a twin bed is too deep to sit straight up on. You would need REALLY thick back pillows to not have to unprofessionally lounge around. Anyway, it looks like what you would need to do is build wooden boxes for the back and side, screw them together, cover that with spray glue and foam, then slipcover those, the bed, and whatever pillows you find/make. You could screw the bedframe to the back and side boxes, I'm sure. If you have a sewing machine, square slipcovers are really easy. Just do it all inside out with a lot of pins. The real one seems to be on some sort of platform base, I would skip that if I had to do it. On preview, I'm saying to not do anything to the bed itself, just to make a stiff rectangular fitted bedspread.
posted by artychoke at 10:12 AM on April 30, 2009

I think the bedspread slipcover part should have a top, front and left side. (The front and side would reach to the floor) and then on the back (the far long side of the mattress) and right side there should be a maybe 6 inch strip that velcroes onto the back and side box. Damn. I am completely out of things in my house to reupholster. Now I want to re-reupholster something.
posted by artychoke at 10:17 AM on April 30, 2009

Lots and lots of thick pillows.
posted by radioamy at 10:51 AM on April 30, 2009

Buy a daybed frame, so you can use the twin mattress and make it into a couch. See some upholstered examples at
posted by slateyness at 11:55 AM on April 30, 2009

I can tell you right now that your mattress is way too soft for that. Best bet, as mentioned, would be to put it on a daybed frame, but I'm not sure if a regular twin mattress would fit a standard one.
posted by rhizome at 2:05 PM on April 30, 2009

Well, I suppose you could make two boxes, one for the back, one for the end, out of mdf, and a platform like the diy couch without the wheels (boy, that's a great sofa bed!) Or hide casters up inside the frame so your sofa is very near the floor and the casters don't show. Fasten the whole thing together with L brackets so you can get it through the door when you need to move. Hinge the top of the boxes to stow blankets, pillows when they're not in use. Upholster boxes and frame. Slipcover the mattress. If you cover the frame and made a separate removable mattress cover (top and sides), you'd have something close, but not exact. You'll need lots of large pillows on the back to make it useful to sit on, perhaps pillows slipped into cases for day use.
posted by x46 at 2:37 PM on April 30, 2009

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