I learned a lot from this project. I started it when I had about 18 months of hand tool experience. In all honesty, I wasn't ready from a skill perspective to be doing this. But, my wife wanted to go to Ikea to buy something for my daughters room and I balked because I knew I could make something as good if not much better with the skill level I had at the time than Ikea furniture. As to the design, I found it from either Tauton Press or Popular Woodworking and bought the design. Way too soon for me to design from scratch.
I started with rough cherry that I purchased from a lumber mill. I paid under $4 a board foot.
One of the key things I learned was something Paul Sellers has said in many of his instructional videos. Don't give up, keep going, push through. There were several times where I wanted to take an ax and chop this up. I didn't but I did put this project on hold a couple of times. As such it took me about two and half years before I finished it. The good news is that my skill level kept increasing so things I thought impossible to do weren't by the time I needed to do it.
A big learning I had was to make sure I use a reference face when measuring during layout. I wasn't consistent in doing that so it created issues.
I also learned the hard way that you can clamp things out of square. I used too much clamping pressure on some pieces. Also, on the top, I didn't align the boards so I had more planning to do with my foreplane and No 5 jointer than I would have had to do otherwise. Live and learn.
The outside sides have a design element. It's the first time I have had to make four of the same thing. The came out really close to each other. I was happy about that. It taught me that making duplicate parts is something I can do.
Finish is shellac followed by way.
My daughter loves it. It has plenty of imperfections but I am ok with that. She will likely keep this piece her whole life and pass it down to her children with the story of how grandpa made this.
At some point I want to make another one so that she has a pair of them to go on each side of the bed. I'm not in a rush but I do look forward to it just to see how much my skill has increased.
All in all I probably have 200 to 250 hours to time invested in this piece. I only used hand tools. Though seriously frustrated many times while making it. I am proud of the outcome and know the next time it will be even better (not that that matters to my little daughter).