I bought 2 pieces of 4" thick foam at the fabric store, but when I started cutting it in half, I realized it was too thick. Since I couldn't return it, I just cut them all in half the other way so they are 2" thick. THEN I was able to return one of the foam pieces I hadn't touched since the one piece was enough for all four beds. It would be a lot easier to just buy 2" thick foam. That would be my suggestion. :)
Since the foam was now really ugly from being hacked by a too-short electric fish filleting knife, it needed to be covered. So I cut up an old sheet that was sort of bleached out on one side and we only used for covering plants and things like that. Don't worry, I washed it.
I have 3 more to sew up on the ends. Sigh. That bores me just thinking about it.
I tried to sew a button on the foam to make it look more like a cushioned mattress, but I couldn't get it to tie tight enough to stay pressed down. It wasn't worth the effort, but it would have been cute if it worked. Here is a bare-bones bed. You can't tell the scale from this pic, but the beds are actually quite large. The sides of the tub aren't straight, so at the top it's much bigger than the inside bottom is. Plenty of room to tuck in the bedding on the sides, thanks to the size of foam I bought.
My nieces are getting reversible aprons inspired by this tutorial. I realize the tutorial is for a doll quilt and I somehow got inspired to make aprons, but it was another great way to use those fabric samples my mom gets in the mail. I tried to grab their favorite colors for their aprons.
I will be adding a children's cookbook to this gift. And I'm getting them each a little toy too. They aren't old enough to get ALL practical gifts yet!
That comes later. Like when you are 38 and you find a $50 gift card in your old Christmas cards and you buy.......a vacuum cleaner and groceries with it.
And you are excited.