Sunday, October 28, 2012

DIY Headboard with Nailhead Trim

When we moved into our first home together, we quickly realized that along with more space came the need for more furniture to fill it! While we first splurged on a king bed for the master (best money ever spent - trust me!) we both also brought along our previous queen beds from our individual apartment/bachelor pad dwelling days of life for our guest bedrooms.

Unfortunately neither bed had a headboard (which meant something left to be desired from a home decor standpoint), but after spending money on our king bed, new leather sectional, new coffee tables, etc. we did not have a ton of extra cash lying around for something pretty like a headboard that is not exactly "essential" to have. BUT when I get an idea in my head to do something, typically that idea will not be dropped easily (yes, I have a stubborn streak). Enter the homemade headboard for an affordable price.

Due to my obsession with getting a headboard for a least one room, I found some cute DIY upholstered headboards on Pinterest and some random blogs and I knew I could make one for a fraction of the cost of buying one from a store.

Materials needed for DIY Upholstered Headboard w/ Nailhead Trim
  • Plywood slab (1/2" to 5/8" thickness, cut to your desired height and width)
  • Quilt batting (enough to meet your desired headboard plushness). 
    • *Note: For those who want a really plush headboard you can also use foam / eggshell bed mats, cut and trimmed down to desired size. This adds to the cost and complexity of project and in my mind is not necessary unless you plan to read against your headboard every night for hours on end)
  • Spray adhesive
  • Staple gun (with staples that are not too long - you don't want them going through your plywood!)
  • Rubber mallet
  • Upholstery fabric of your choosing
  • French cleats (to hold up to 200lbs)  to hang headboard
  • Nailhead trim of desired metal color 
    • *Note: You may be able to find a couple of kinds of nailhead trim at JoAnn fabric, but I purchased mine online as there were more color options. Opt for 10 yards of nailhead trim that only requires you to nail every 5th nail as this means a much straighter line and easier installation)
I sent my lovely boyfriend - who so kindly puts up with my stubbornness and random house projects - off to Home Depot on my behalf to get a slab of 5/8" inch plywood for the headboard (they were out of it that day, so they gave him 1/2" inch plywood for a super discounted price for the inconvenience). The kind folks at HD will cut down the wood for free to your desired height and width. I measured the width of the queen bed and added a couple inches on either side and simply guestimated on the height.

I went to JoAnn Fabric and Michaels to purchase the spray adhesive and quilt batting (definitely use their regular 40% off one item for quit batting which can get expensive).

I found some fabric that I liked at JoAnn's and they happened to be having a huge upholstery sale. I opted for the Waverly Sun N Shade Outdoor Fabric in Chippendale Fretwork Mineral. I got three yards for only $7.99 a yard (normally $24.99) and I was on my way.

Once I had all of my materials I started to build the headboard.
  • Lay plywood down on the ground 
  • Spray wood with thin layer of spray adhesive
  • Layer quilt batting over entire piece of plywood (using spray adhesive between layers) to preferred thickness. 
  • Carefully align fabric over the wood and batting, ensuring pattern is straight
  • With help from someone, tilt plywood up off of the ground and carefully begin stapling fabric around the back side of the plywood. (Staple fabric 2-3" inches from top, bottom, and sides and ensure that the fabric pattern is properly aligned as you go along. Also make sure fabric is pulled taught, but not too tight to avoid fabric puckering). 
  • Once plywood and batting are wrapped with fabric and secured with staples, add your nailhead trim using the rubber mallet! (Read directions on box and place nailhead trim at desired location on headboard. You won't necessarily need to do the bottom of headboard as it will likely be covered by the bed. It can be hard to keep the trim straight - as you will see by my slight flub on the top of my headboard - so go slowly!)
  • Enjoy your final product, and if preferred, hang with french cleats on the wall behind your bed!
My final headboard cost around $100 and it definitely adds some pizzazz to at least one of our guest bedrooms!


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