Material: What is the Best Material for a Murphy Bed?

Ch. 04 – The Total Murphy Bed Buying Guide

By: Brandon

Material: What is the Best Material for a Murphy Bed?

Ch. 04 – The Total Murphy Bed Buying Guide

By: Brandon

The Total Murphy Bed Buying Guide:

Chapter 03. Dimensions: How Big Should a Murphy Bed Be?

Chapter 05. Installation: How much does it cost to install a Murphy bed? (coming soon)


Murphy beds, also known as wall beds, have been a popular choice for homeowners looking to maximize space in their living quarters. They are ideal for small apartments, studios, and guest rooms where space is limited. However, not all Murphy beds are built the same, and choosing the right material for the bed frame is crucial. In this blog post, we will discuss the different bed materials available for Murphy beds and why solid wood and furniture grade plywood are the best options.

Murphy beds can be made from a variety of materials, including solid wood, furniture grade plywood, melamine, and particle board. Solid wood and furniture grade plywood are definitely the best options for many reasons.

Solid wood is a natural material that has been used for centuries to make furniture that is strong, durable, and has a unique beauty that cannot be replicated by man-made materials. Furniture grade plywood is a building material that is made from layers of hardwood that are stacked on each other with the grain going alternating directions. The surface is skinned with a solid wood veneer. This creates a strong and stable material ideal for any furniture that requires large panels. Solid wood trims with plywood panels are the ideal combination to create something beautiful, stable and durable.

At Wilding Wallbeds we build our custom Murphy beds and wall beds out of solid woods and furniture grade plywoods. We have found that the key to making a quality product begins with using the best materials.

What material is most durable?

Both solid wood and furniture grade plywood are superior to melamine and particle board in terms of strength and durability.

  • Melamine is a type of resin that is applied to a substrate, such as particle board or MDF, to create a smooth surface. While it is less expensive than solid wood and furniture grade plywood, it is also less durable and more prone to chipping and cracking.
  • Particle board, also known as chipboard, is made from wood chips and sawdust that are mixed with a resin and pressed together to form a flat panel. It is the least expensive option, but it is also the weakest and least durable.

The benefit of real wood

One of the most significant advantages of solid wood and furniture grade plywood is their ability to withstand the wear and tear of daily use. A Murphy bed is opened and closed on a regular basis, and the bed frame needs to be strong enough to support the weight of the mattress and the sleeper. Solid wood and furniture grade plywood are up to the task, while melamine and particle board are not. A Murphy bed is simply heavier that a normal piece of furniture, it also carries a lot of stored energy because of the lifting mechanism. This means that the strength and durability of the building materials seriously impact the overall function of the Murphy bed.

The internet is flooded with cheap Murphy beds made from inferior materials. A quick scroll through the reviews and you will find loads of stories about broken beds and nonfunctioning products.

Cape Cod style Wall Bed in Cherry wood with Grand Harbor finish

What material is most beautiful?

Solid wood and furniture grade plywood are also more aesthetically pleasing than melamine and particle board. They have a natural beauty that cannot be replicated by man-made materials. Real wood can be stained to match any decor, and can even be painted a solid color to give you that clean look that is popular in furniture these days. We use real wood to ensure that our Murphy beds are not just durable but also beautiful.

In contrast, man-made alternatives generally have a cheap and artificial look that can look fine in a photo, but in real life are far from convincing. They are typically covered with a thin layer of paper or vinyl that is printed to look like wood. While they are available in a variety of colors and patterns, they do not have the same depth and richness as solid wood and furniture grade plywood. 

Design a Real Wood Murphy Bed With us.

Don’t settle for a cheap option, invest in a high-quality, real wood Murphy bed you can trust.

What are the environmental Impacts?

In addition to being aesthetically pleasing, solid wood and furniture grade plywood are also both much more environmentally friendly. They are made from sustainable sources and can be recycled at the end of their useful life. They also emit fewer volatile organic compounds (VOCs) than man-made materials like melamine and particle board, which can be harmful to human health and the environment. At Wilding Wallbeds our Murphy beds are all built from sustainably sourced lumber that has been planted and harvested with the express purpose of furniture making. All of the lumber is milled in the U.S. and is compliant with Green standards to be free of harmful chemicals.

Melamine and particle board, on the other hand, are made from non-renewable resources and are not recyclable. They also emit more VOCs than solid wood and furniture grade plywood, which can contribute to indoor air pollution and respiratory problems. Though some of these materials are manufactured in the U.S. many are imported from overseas where the regulations regarding harmful chemicals , such as formaldehyde, are much less strict. 

What are the safety risks?

Many times, the people sleeping on your Murphy bed are some of your favorite people! Children visiting from college, grandkids visiting for the weekend, etc. Because of this, you want a perfect peace-of-mind knowing that your bed is safe for years to come.

Solid wood and furniture grade plywood are safer than melamine and particle board. They are less likely to break or crack, which can cause the bed frame to collapse and injure the sleeper. They are also less flammable than man-made materials, which can be a significant safety concern in the event of a fire.

The last thing you want is for our Murphy bed to fail while your guests are sleeping and result in harm. Saving a buck up front on a cheap Murphy bed is not the correct route to saving space efficiently and safely.

grandkids visiting grandparents

To sum it all up

When it comes to choosing the building materials for a Murphy bed, solid wood and furniture grade plywood are the best options. They are strong, durable, aesthetically pleasing, environmentally friendly, and safe. Melamine and particle board are inferior materials that are weak, less attractive, environmentally unfriendly, and can be less safe. While they may be less expensive, they are not simply not worth it.Wilding Wallbeds is the obvious choice for stylish Murphy beds that are going to last you a lifetime. You get to choose your wood type of choice to give you the exact look you are wanting. You also get to choose the stain to ensure it compliments your room. Check out all of our wood and color choices, and If you’d like to see any of them in person just give us a call and we will get them sent out to you.

Brandon Wilding

Director of Corporate Sales

Brandon is the director of corporate sales, which means he oversees the sales staff at each Wilding Wallbeds location. He offers training, provides solutions, and helps our sales team tackle…