Monday, February 22, 2010

Make your own upholstered headboard


Five years ago, we moved into a new house. A brand-new house is marvelous for many reasons. A clean slate! New roof! New electrical and plumbing fixtures! New flooring! New windows and walls and doors and ceilings! The freshness of it is wonderful.



The not-so-wonderful parts are hidden at first. For instance, those brand-new, energy-efficient windows are naked. Those freshly-painted walls are bare. And so the adventure of moving into a new house may include the fact that all your money goes to pay for necessities like blinds or shutters to cover your naked windows, and you have very little left for the fun of decorating the new space.

One of the reasons we chose our house was because we could tell that our existing furniture would fit nicely into our new spaces. The scale and proportion of this house fit our stuff just right. Still, there were blank spaces here and there.

One of those was the guestroom. I was beyond thrilled to have a house with a dedicated guest bedroom and bath en suite. I love having a space set aside that's always ready for guests. I already had twin beds, a nightstand, and a dresser. But the beds were just frames and mattresses--not exactly the luxe look I wanted in a guest bedroom.

Then I happened upon a roll of fabric on sale for less than $1/yard. With that fabric in hand, I bought a sheet of plywood and had the nice man at Home Depot cut me two pieces 41" wide x 44" tall. Using a dinner plate as a template, I rounded off the top edges with a jigsaw. I had some old foam mattress pads in the attic, so I cut one of those in half and glued foam onto the front of the plywood, making a nice, cushy surface. After that, I upholstered the foamy board with my $1 fabric and added a little trim, and presto! I had comfortable, pretty headboards that cost very little.



Fast forward five years. I still liked the idea of upholstered headboards, but the gold fabric was looking a little tired. I still liked floral fabric I'd used to make throw pillows and window treatments, and I still liked the room's other furnishings. So I wanted to keep that, but I wanted to change the headboards.
Enter this beautiful fabric, found last week at my local discount fabric store:



54" wide, $7.99/yard. Score.
If you've never upholstered anything, a headboard like this is an excellent place to start. It's really as simple as wrapping a present.



Lay your fabric out on a flat surface (I used the guest room floor), wrong side up. Center the item to be covered on the fabric. Then simply pull the fabric onto the item you're covering, making sure to keep the edges straight (use the fabric pattern to guide you) as you go. Secure the fabric with a staple gun. I suggest using just a few staples at first, because if you end up having to re-do a section, it's much easier to pull out just a few staples. Wrap, pull, and staple all the way around your item. When you get to the final side, pull extra hard to make sure the fabric is taut and wrinkle-free. Turn the item over to be sure that the fabric placement is right, then go back and add plenty of staples to make sure everything is secure.



I wanted a little something extra to finish off these headboards, and I found cording that included the green of my new fabric with the red and gold colors in the throw pillows that I wanted to re-use.



It was $4/yard, and I bought 3 1/2 yards for each headboard. The cording I simply stapled to the back of the headboard, leaving just the decorative part peeking out on the sides.



This part was very rewarding because it took so little time: less than five minutes and it was done.
Voila! A brand-new headboard!



You may have seen headboards that were built onto special legs or mounted directly to the wall with special brackets. I'm here to tell you that you can make a great headboard simply by upholstering a piece of plywood and leaning it up against the wall. No mounting required. Push your bedframe and mattress against it; the weight of the bed will hold it in place.




The finished product:



A new look for about $25 per headboard. What do you think?

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38 comments:

  1. Amazing and beautiful... both of them :) Wish I needed a headboard now ;)

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  2. Pretty! All of us could actually use headboards at my house. This would be an easy way for me to create some. I'll have to keep this in mind. Thanks.

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  3. Nice you make this do able. My goal is to be more crafty this year. Thanks for the post.

    SITS girl ;-)

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  4. Looked amazing both ways... I am re-doing my guest room right now and am considering using twin beds instead of the queen bed that is in there now... Mostly because I have 4 grandkids who will use the room on night I babysit... So that leads me to my question; do your couples guests mind twin beds?
    ~Really Rainey~

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  5. Very nice! I liked that you showed us the back of the headboard as your wrapped it...only smart bloggers remember to take photos as they work. ;) Love the new look!!! Someday maybe I'll own a blank slate too. ;)

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  6. Love it! Very chic. I have been blessed to have two different brand new homes. It is wonderful to start with everything clean and new... and daunting at the same time! Blessings!

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  7. Very pretty. You did an incredible job.

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  8. Richella, that is a great project! I've seen so many upholstered headboards in blogland, this one looks so easy and inexpensive. Way to go! It looks great in either fabric. Wish I had another bedroom with no real bed & I'd try this.

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  9. It does look chic...I think it is your fabric trim and the lovely height! So very nice.

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  10. Great job, Richella! I really like the new fabric you chose. And the cording is such a great find too because it adds a great splash of color, but can match anything with the other two colors. I am particularly thinking about Christmas colors. What a very pleasant way to say 'Merry Christms, Guests' with color coordinating decor for the holidays. Lovely, as usual. Blessings ~

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  11. Ooooh, love it, girl!!! I'm thinking I need to do this!!! ;D

    Suzanne

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  12. your headboard looks lovely and wow, you stapled on the trim. LOL, i like to sew and I would of probably sewed it on there, but you can't beat how fast you put it up with your staple gun.

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  13. This looks so great! Love the fabric & you made it look so easy! Thanks for the inspiration, I really need to get going on a headboard like this for my own guestroom! :)
    Blessings,
    Stacey

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  14. Such a thrifty, clever idea! I can just picture you with your plate and jigsaw! Love the new fabric too~
    Melissa

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  15. Those look impossibly crisp and pretty. Must copy to update my headboard.

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  16. BEAUTIFUL! I am so impressed. I don't attempt enough things like that, but everyone makes them look so easy. (I know you worked hard on it, though!) I love your fabric choices AND your thriftiness! Great job.

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  17. Seriously? Love them! I'm planning on making one soon so wish me luck! Yours are beautiful!

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  18. Girl, you are so crafty and clever. Those headboards are beautiful! I was catching up on your last few posts and let me just say that I hope I look as young as you do in 10 years. I've said it before but it bears repeating: you SO do not look 46! : )

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  19. Very pretty! Love the diamond texture of the new fabric. Great job!

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  20. Love the new look. Especially with the white bed covers.

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  21. Wow! That looks so great and you made it so doable! Thanks!

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  22. Love the headboard. The trim really finishes it off nice.
    I hope to use that in my guest room in the future.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Brooke

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  23. Bravo! Looks like real designers work! Fabulous! Elli from Toronto.

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  24. I'm definitely going to use this idea! Stopping by from SITS today! Great blog :)

    www.finewire.blogspot.com
    www.onefineblogdesign.blogspot.com

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  25. I liked both headboards. Fun project that you can easily change when you are ready. Thanks for the step by step instructions.

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  26. Nicely done! Thanks for the tutorial!

    I'm hosting a linky party and would love to have you come on over and participate.

    http://mybackyardeden.blogspot.com/2010/02/make-it-yours-day_24.html

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  27. Wow, that's a lot of impact for $25. Looks great!

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  28. you have inspired me to try and create a headboard in my guest room.

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  29. Oh wow it looks great! :) Of course I'd only expect that coming from you :)

    Thanks for linking up!

    Rachelle

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  30. I'm so glad you linked up to Make it Yours day!

    Thanks again!

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  31. Love the new fabric! Great colors!

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  32. I love the step by step! I've always been tempted to do this in our master bedroom...it looks amazing!

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  33. OH I adore that trim idea!!! That gives me an idea -- if I could find something that would be a great finishing touch to the Bub's headboard!!

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  34. I love them both ways, but it's nice to freshen things up isn't it?

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  35. I have been wanting an uphosltered headbord for a while and just don't want to spend the money to buy a pre-made one... Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge especially the step by step pictures... I am heading to the fabric store and home depot right now!!!

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