Safe & Cozy DIY Co-sleeper Crib: 9-Step Build Guide

Parents with newborn babies can sleep better at night when their babies are on a co-sleeper.
Parents with newborn babies can sleep better at night when their babies are in a co-sleeper crib.

Parents with newborn babies have a lot of decisions to make. One of the biggest decisions is where the baby will sleep.

There are a lot of options out there, but it seems like more and more parents are choosing a co-sleeper crib instead of a traditional crib.

There are a few reasons why co-sleepers might be more appealing to parents. First of all, they can be a lot more comfortable for babies. Co-sleepers are designed to fit right up against the bed, so the baby can sleep soundly and safely right next to mom and dad.

Babies are delicate creatures who need to be close to their parents, especially at night. Having a co-sleeper will put the parents’ minds at ease, knowing that their little one is right next to them. It also gives the parents the ability to bond with their child and creates a special connection that can last a lifetime.

It allows them to stay close to their babies without having to actually put them on their beds. Co-sleepers give parents the rest and peace of mind that they need as they wouldn’t have to constantly get up to check on their babies.

There are a lot of co-sleepers on the market but the newer, nicer ones usually come with a hefty price tag. If you’re looking for a quality co-sleeper but don’t want to spend a fortune, consider checking out some of the less expensive options.

You may be surprised at how well they work and how much you can save. You can even try making your own co-sleeper crib. With a little creativity and some DIY skills, you can easily create a co-sleeper that’s both stylish and functional. Plus, you’ll save money in the process!

The project may look intimidating but it's totally doable!
The co-sleeper crib project may look intimidating but it really is totally doable!

Making your own co-sleeper crib is a great way to save money and have a unique piece of furniture for your baby. This project may look intimidating at first, but it’s actually quite doable. My friend made this while she was in her sixth month of pregnancy, so if she can do it, so can you!

To make your own co-sleeper crib, you’ll need some basic carpentry skills and tools. You’ll also need to find a tutorial or plan online or in a book. Once you have the supplies and know-how, the project should come together relatively easily.

If you’re looking for ways to keep your newborn close by during the night, you’re in luck! We have a tutorial video on how to create a co-sleeper crib. This way, you can have peace of mind knowing that your little one is right next to you, and you can both get a good night’s sleep.

Building a Co-Sleeper Crib Guide


  • Wooden boards
  • Wood glue
  • Screws
  • Wood stain


  • Circular Saw
  • Table Saw
  • Jointer
  • Planer
  • Clamps
  • Drill
  • Belt Sander


1. Design Your Co-sleeper Crib

Start by sketching a design for your co-sleeper crib. Determine the dimensions based on the height of your bed and the space available beside it. Your crib should be level with your mattress for easy access to your baby.

2. Cut the Wooden Boards

Using the circular saw or table saw, cut the wooden boards according to your design dimensions. You’ll need pieces for the sides, bottom, and ends of the crib.

3. Smooth the Boards

Run each board through the jointer to flatten one face, then use the planer to ensure each piece is of uniform thickness. This step is crucial for ensuring a smooth, flat surface that’s safe for your baby.

4. Sand the Wood

Use the belt sander to smooth all surfaces of the wood, removing any splinters or rough edges. Pay extra attention to the edges and corners to make them as smooth as possible.

5. Assemble the Frame

Lay out the side, bottom, and end pieces according to your design. Apply wood glue to the edges that will be joined together, and use clamps to hold them in place. Once the glue is tacky, drill pilot holes and screw the pieces together to form the frame of your co-sleeper crib.

6. Create the Mattress Support

Cut additional wooden boards to fit inside the crib frame, providing a base for the mattress. Ensure there’s enough support to hold the mattress firmly in place. Attach these supports using screws, making sure they are level and secure.

7. Apply Wood Stain

Once the construction is complete and the glue has dried, apply wood stain to your co-sleeper crib. Choose a baby-safe product that matches your bedroom furniture. Apply the stain evenly and let it dry according to the product’s instructions.

8. Final Inspection and Sanding

After the stain has dried, conduct a final inspection of the crib. Look for any sharp edges or rough areas. Use the belt sander or sandpaper to smooth out any imperfections.

9. Attach to the Bed

Depending on your design, you may want to secure the co-sleeper crib to the side of your bed. Ensure it’s securely attached and there are no gaps between the crib and your bed.

Co-sleeping Laws and Regulations

Co-sleeping with your baby can be a rewarding experience, offering numerous benefits for both parent and child. However, it’s essential to be aware of the laws and regulations surrounding co-sleeping to ensure the safety and well-being of your little one. Understanding these guidelines can help parents make informed decisions about their sleeping arrangements, especially when considering a co-sleeper crib.

Understanding Co-sleeping Regulations

Different regions may have specific guidelines or recommendations regarding co-sleeping. These are often based on research and are designed to minimize risks associated with infant sleep environments. It’s crucial for parents to check the latest guidelines from health authorities or child welfare organizations in their area.

Safety Standards for Co-sleeper Cribs

The safety of co-sleeper cribs is paramount. Many countries have set standards to ensure these products provide a safe sleeping environment for infants. Look for co-sleeper cribs that meet or exceed these safety standards. They should have features that prevent the baby from rolling out of the crib or becoming trapped between the crib and the adult bed.

Legal Considerations for Co-sleeping

In some jurisdictions, there may be legal considerations tied to co-sleeping practices, especially in cases of harm. It’s important for parents to understand their responsibilities and ensure that their co-sleeping arrangements are safe and do not pose any risk to the child.

Recommendations for Safe Co-sleeping

Health organizations often provide recommendations to improve co-sleeping safety. These can include using a co-sleeper crib that attaches securely to the parents’ bed, ensuring the mattress is firm and flat, and keeping pillows, blankets, and other soft items away from the baby.

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Benefits of Co-sleeping

Co-sleeping offers several benefits for parents and their babies, creating a nurturing environment that fosters bonding and ease throughout the night. Families can make informed decisions about their nighttime routines by understanding the benefits of co-sleeping. When done safely and following recommended guidelines, this practice can enhance the entire family’s well-being.

Enhanced Bonding and Security

One of the standout benefits of using a co-sleeper crib is the enhanced bonding and security it facilitates between parents and their child. Having your baby in a co-sleeper crib adjacent to your bed fosters a deep sense of security and comfort for the infant. This closeness during the night significantly reduces stress and anxiety levels in babies, as they benefit from their parents’ warmth and reassuring presence. 

Using a co-sleeper crib supports crucial emotional development and attachment, offering peace of mind to both the child and the parents. It’s a practice that strengthens the bond with your baby and ensures that everyone enjoys a sense of security and closeness, making a co-sleeper crib an excellent choice for families looking to enhance their nighttime bonding experience.

Improved Sleep Quality

Utilizing a co-sleeper crib can improve sleep quality for both the baby and the parents. Babies sleeping in a co-sleeper crib next to their parents’ bed wake up less often, contributing to longer and more peaceful rest for the entire family. This setup is particularly beneficial for parents, as it eliminates the need to get up and walk to a separate room for nighttime feedings or soothing. 

The convenience of having your baby within arm’s reach in a co-sleeper crib can significantly enhance the quality of sleep for parents. This is especially true for breastfeeding mothers, as it simplifies nighttime feedings. By fostering an environment where both parent and child can easily settle back to sleep, a co-sleeper crib becomes an invaluable tool in improving the sleep quality of the whole family, making it a favored option for those seeking a restful night.

Easier Breastfeeding

Using a co-sleeper crib can significantly simplify breastfeeding for nursing mothers, making it an essential tool for those looking to maintain a strong breastfeeding relationship. The convenience of having the baby within arm’s reach throughout the night means that mothers can nurse their infants without the need to fully awaken or get out of bed. 

This ease of access supports the breastfeeding process and contributes to a more restful night’s sleep for both mother and baby. When a baby is fed on demand, as facilitated by the proximity of a co-sleeper crib, it can profoundly impact their growth and development. 

The feeding method ensures that the baby’s nutritional needs are met promptly, reinforcing the natural feeding rhythm and bonding experience between mother and child. The co-sleeper crib, by enabling easier and more convenient nighttime feedings, becomes an invaluable asset in nurturing a successful breastfeeding relationship.

Regulation of Baby’s Physiological Functions

The practice of co-sleeping, particularly when using a co-sleeper crib, plays a crucial role in regulating an infant’s physiological functions. The close presence of parents throughout the night provides a comforting environment that helps babies maintain stable breathing, heart rate, and body temperature. 

This regulatory effect is vital for the health and well-being of the infant, offering protection against fluctuations that could lead to discomfort or health issues. Furthermore, the proximity allowed by a co-sleeper crib is believed to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) by promoting a safer sleep environment. 

A co-sleeper crib significantly enhances the ability to quickly respond to and address any potential issues that may arise during the night. As a result, co-sleeping supports healthier development during the critical early months of a baby’s life, making it a preferred choice for parents focused on providing the best care and safety for their infants.

Safety Guidelines for DIY Co-sleeper Cribs

Creating a DIY co-sleeper crib can be a rewarding project that brings your baby closer to you at night while ensuring they have a safe, secure place to sleep. However, prioritizing safety in designing and constructing your DIY co-sleeper crib is crucial. By following certain safety guidelines, you can create a sleeping environment that promotes both closeness and safety for your infant.

Choose Safe Materials

When embarking on the journey of creating a DIY co-sleeper crib, the selection of materials plays a pivotal role in ensuring the safety and well-being of your baby. Choosing safe, non-toxic materials that pose no risk to your infant’s health is crucial. 

Avoid woods that have been treated with chemicals or contain harmful substances. Many commercially available woods are treated to resist pests and rot, but these treatments can release harmful substances into the environment, potentially affecting your baby’s health.

Opting for natural, untreated woods is a wise choice. These woods provide the safety and purity needed for items used by infants. Choose paints, stains, and finishes certified as baby-safe when you finish your co-sleeper crib. These products are specifically formulated to be free from volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can off-gas and contribute to indoor air pollution, potentially harming your baby’s developing respiratory system.

Furthermore, the physical safety of the materials used is equally important. Ensure that all materials are smooth and free from sharp edges and splinters. This may involve sanding down wood surfaces to a smooth finish and rounding off any corners to prevent scratches or injuries. By prioritizing selecting safe, non-toxic, and smooth materials, you create a healthier and safer sleeping environment for your baby in the co-sleeper crib.

Ensure a Snug Fit to the Bed

The design of your DIY co-sleeper crib must include a snug, secure fit against the adult bed to ensure the utmost safety for your baby. A proper fit eliminates dangerous gaps that could potentially trap or harm the baby during the night. 

To achieve this, precise measurement and adjustment are key. Measure the height of your adult bed from the floor to the top of the mattress. Use these measurements to adjust the height of your co-sleeper crib, ensuring that its sleeping surface is level with your mattress.

This alignment is crucial for preventing the baby from rolling into any spaces between the co-sleeper crib and the adult bed. Moreover, it facilitates easier access for parents to reach their baby during the night, whether for feeding, comforting, or simply checking in. The goal is to create a seamless transition between the co-sleeper crib and the bed, enhancing safety and promoting a closer bond between parent and child.

To ensure a snug fit, you may also consider customizing the design of your co-sleeper crib with adjustable features that allow for fine-tuning the connection to your bed. This could involve creating a system that securely anchors the co-sleeper crib to the adult bed frame or using adjustable legs to match the height precisely. Ensuring a snug fit to the bed provides a safe, secure, and convenient sleeping arrangement that benefits both the baby and the parents.

Sturdy Construction

Ensuring the sturdy construction of your DIY co-sleeper crib is paramount for the safety of your baby. The framework and all connections within the crib must be robust and secure to safely support your baby’s weight and movements. 

This means every screw, bolt, and joint should be tightly fitted and strong enough to prevent any possibility of collapsing. A solid construction gives you peace of mind, knowing that your baby rests in a safe environment.

It’s crucial to perform regular checks and maintenance on your co-sleeper crib. Over time, even the sturdiest materials can loosen or wear, posing potential risks. Regular inspections allow you to tighten any loosened connections and replace worn-out parts, ensuring the crib remains safe for use.

For those who may not be confident in their construction skills, seeking advice or services from a professional carpenter can be a wise decision. A professional can provide insights into the best materials and construction techniques to use, ensuring the co-sleeper crib is built to the highest safety standards. Their expertise can also be invaluable in achieving a sturdy, durable construction that you might not be able to achieve on your own.

Safe Sleeping Surface

For your DIY co-sleeper crib, selecting the right mattress is critical to your baby’s safety and comfort. The mattress must be firm and flat, supporting your baby’s body without the risk of sinking or contouring, which could create a dangerous situation. 

The mattress must fit snugly within the crib’s dimensions. This precision ensures there are no gaps or spaces along the edges where a baby’s limbs could get trapped, effectively reducing the risk of suffocation or entrapment.

When choosing a mattress, opt for one that is specifically designed for infants. These mattresses are manufactured to meet strict safety standards, providing the firmness babies need for safe sleep. 

Additionally, it’s vital to resist the urge to add soft bedding, pillows, or stuffed animals to the crib. Though these items may offer comfort, they significantly increase the risk of suffocation. Keeping the crib environment simple and free of unnecessary soft items is a best practice that prioritizes your baby’s safety.


Adequate ventilation is another cornerstone of creating a safe sleeping environment within your co-sleeper crib. Ensuring that fresh air circulates freely through the crib is essential for maintaining your baby’s comfort and safety throughout the night. When designing your DIY co-sleeper crib, consider incorporating features that promote good airflow, such as mesh sides or slats spaced no more than 2-3 inches apart.

Mesh sides are particularly effective for ventilation while also providing the transparency needed to keep an eye on your baby easily. If you opt for slatted sides, ensure they are spaced closely enough to prevent your baby’s head from getting stuck but far enough apart to allow air to circulate freely. These design choices help regulate your baby’s temperature during sleep, reduce the risk of overheating, and contribute to a safer sleeping environment.

Regular Inspection and Maintenance

Ensuring the ongoing safety of your DIY co-sleeper crib requires a commitment to regular inspection and maintenance. Over time, the wear and tear of daily use can affect the crib’s structural integrity. To prevent potential accidents and guarantee the crib continues to offer a haven for your baby, it’s essential to conduct frequent checks.

During these inspections, pay close attention to any loose screws or bolts that may have become less secure. These are critical components of your co-sleeper crib’s stability, and even a single loose screw can compromise the crib’s overall safety. Tightening these fasteners should be a routine part of your maintenance schedule.

Additionally, look for signs of wear on the crib’s parts. This can include cracks in the wood, frayed fabrics in areas with mesh, or any other indications of material fatigue. Identifying and addressing these issues promptly can prevent them from becoming serious safety hazards.

It’s also wise to assess the crib for any structural weaknesses. Regular use can sometimes lead to unexpected stresses on the crib’s frame, which might not be immediately visible. Carefully examine the crib for any signs of bending, warping, or distortion affecting its stability.

Regular maintenance is more than just a safety measure; it invests in your child’s well-being. This includes not only tightening and replacing worn parts but also ensuring the cleanliness of the crib. Dust and allergens can accumulate on surfaces and in fabrics, so keeping the crib clean is also crucial to your maintenance routine.


Building a DIY co-sleeper crib is a meaningful project that brings your baby closer during the night and ensures they have a safe and comfortable place to rest. You can create a sturdy and functional co-sleeper crib by following the step-by-step instructions provided, using the specified materials and tools, and adhering to safety guidelines.



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