The fourth bedroom in our home serves a dual purpose. Most of the time, it is set up as my office. I love the long workspace of my desk, and I spend at least an hour here each morning, checking email, doing Bible study and journaling. Everything is at hand, and the space is cozy and comfortable.
Several times a year, we convert my office to our guest room to accommodate friends and family who come for a visit. When we bought the house, we considered our options: Guest bed? Or pull-out sofa? Rather than have to work around a bed when we don’t have guests, we decided on a pull out sofa, and committed ourselves to finding a solution for the infamous sofa-bed mattress horror show.
The first way that we tackled this problem was by adding additional support to the sofa bed frame by way of 1×6 boards. Mark, my clever husband, added two anchor pieces to “lock” the boards in place along the end of the frame. Otherwise, our guests might find themselves on the giving end of a 1×6 board when they get up for a snack in the middle of the night!
Mark also numbered the boards for convenience, as they were custom fit across the entire frame.
The boards do offer added support, but there is also some movement and flexibility by using 5 of them rather than a single piece of wood.
Ahhhh…the sofa-bed mattress. A tool of the Spanish Inquisition, no doubt, wrapped in a mattress cover, and sold to unsuspecting homeowners. There just isn’t anything nice I can say about it, so I’ll move along.
We bought a three inch memory foam mattress topper at Costco, and straps to keep it rolled up for storage. These things are unwieldy, and rolling it up is like wrangling a squirmy calf. I recommend a second set of hands and a cocktail for afterward. You’ll have earned it!
When my parents come to visit, I typically make the bed with two standard blankets, an electric blanket and a comforter. I also stash an extra quilt and blanket under the bed in case they need some extra warmth.
This sofa-bed set-up works well, and although it can’t beat a real mattress/bed, my parents usually stay for a couple of weeks without complaint. The extra time and effort it takes to set it up is worth it, because well-rested guests are happy guests!