DIY Upholstered Headboard Tutorial

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It’s been months since our lower level flooded and Germaine and I have been working on small, medium and large projects every weekend trying to get things put back together.

We took a break from working on the den to complete a bedroom project. Our bedroom used to serve as our homeschool room and stockpile storage but is in the process of becoming our master bedroom suite.

The first thing we had to do for this master bedroom makeover is clear everything out and re-paint the walls. They were a dark gray which was our first experience with paint and I must say, it was a bad color choice.

Once the walls were painted, we turned our focus to creating an upholstered headboard. I loved this project so much that I made one for every bed in the house.

For the base I used plywood or scrap wood from previous projects cut down to each bed dimension.

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For my king size bed headboard, I made it 74 x 32 and attached it to two 1 x 4’s.

I ended up adding three more one by fours for support because one of the outer legs actually broke while I was trying to reposition this humungous headboard by myself.

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The pictures above are of my king size headboard but I will show you my upholstered headboard tutorial using my kids’ twin bed as an example.

For their headboards, instead of buying plywood I re-purposed an old bi-fold closet door. I cut it down to the size I wanted using a circular saw and was able to create two twin size headboard out of one door panel.

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I used some 2 x 4’s I already had from a previous project for the headboard legs and attached everything with wood screws.

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This is how the kids headboards have looked for several weeks while I searched around for inexpensive but quality fabric.

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Yes…family members jokingly commented about my closet door headboards because they couldn’t envision what the final project would look like.

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All they could see where old doors cut in half and mounted on sticks but once I found some fabric I was able to finish this project!

To add some back support and cushion to the headboard I attached a layer of 1 inch thick foam board that I found at Lowes on the insulation aisle for $10 per pack!

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It comes in packs of 2 and is easy to cut to size using a knife.

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I used two pieces to cover the headboard and hot glued them in place.

I do that so they aren’t shifting around when I get ready to add my fabric.

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The next step is to add some cushion. I think I bought two twin Mainstays 1.25″ Convoluted Foam Topper from Walmart for around $10 and that was enough to cover three beds.

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After adding the foam topper I cut to fit a piece of cotton batting to add an extra layer of plush.

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To cover the headboard, I used a thick cotton curtain panel I found on clearance at Target.

This probably won’t be the final fabric choice but since it was priced right and matched my daughter’s bedroom colors it worked.

For my sons headboard I used a solid brown heavy tablecloth found on clearance at Target as well.

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The easiest way I’ve found to get everything sandwiched and positioned just right is to lay the fabric on the floor, top with the batting, then lay the frame on top.

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After that I begin attaching the fabric to the wood using a staple gun. I used the Stanley light duty staple gun to attach my fabric.

Since this was my first attempt at making an upholstered headboard, I wanted to keep the cost of fabric as low as possible.

For my headboard I used canvas drop cloth. It’s sold at Walmart in the paint section and is normally used to protect surfaces during for paint projects. It’s a very sturdy fabric and you get a lot for the $10 price tag.

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For my daughters headboard, I used a striped curtain panel found on clearance at Target.

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For my youngest son’s headboard, I used a brown tablecloth found on clearance at Target.

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Not only was this project fun, it was much cheaper than buying three headboards. Each headboard cost about $50 or less to make. Check out the cost breakdown.

Daughters twin headboard:

Fabric = $6

Padding = $10

Batting = $12

Foam = $10

Bi-Fold closet doors = $0 (already owned)

Son’s twin headboard

Fabric = $6

Padding = $0 (used 1/2 from daughters project)

Batting = $0 (used 1/2 from daughters project)

Foam = $10 (used 1/2 from daughters project)

Bi-Fold closet doors = $0 (used 1/2 from daughters project)

My king headboard

Fabric = $10

Padding = $10

Batting = $12

Foam = $10

Wood = $30

Total Cost= $116.00

It feels great to cross this project off my list.

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