He has his climbing wall in his new bedroom, but Fonz is also very keen on colouring, so creating a workspace was also a must. To save floor space for playing, I thought it would be a good idea to build a desk that could be folded away when not in use. Ikea sells a wall-mounted drop-leaf table, but ideally I wanted something in plywood to match the climbing wall and if we constructed something ourselves then I knew that we could make the most of every last inch of space.
The back plate is just a sheet of 18mm plywood. My husband built the storage box (used to hold all Fonz’s colouring books and comics) out of the same ply – it just needed three sides and the bottom, as the back plate forms the fourth side. The box was attached by screwing through the back of the back plate to make sure it’s as secure as possible, as this is what supports the desktop when in use. The whole unit was then screwed to the wall.
The desktop (another piece of ply) was fixed to the back plate using a long piano hinge, and when it folds down it rests directly on top of the storage box. To finish it off, we glued a shallow shelf to the top of the back plate. This provides a spot for a pen pot etc, plus when the desktop folds up, it’s held in place by the friction between the shelf and the desktop edge. You could use magnetic fixings instead, though.
My other half was dubious about the fold-away concept. He was convinced the desktop would be permanently left down as it would always be piled high with colouring books, pens etc. But actually, Fonz is really good about popping his books back into the storage box and folding up the desk when he’s finished colouring or writing. I think he’s pretty proud of it!