Our DIY Headboard

We’ve been without a proper bed frame since we moved to Colorado. We kept saying we’d replace the bedroom set we left in Arkansas, but buying a house will quickly drain your furniture budget! This is the bed I’d been eyeing forever, but we could never make ourselves pull the $600+ trigger.

Brompton Tufted Wingback

So our options were to wait to order a bed until it was in the budget (and who knows when that would be with another baby on the way) or make one ourselves. We decided to make just the headboard and pair it with a $20 metal bed frame and $15 white bedskirt to finish the look. We followed this tutorial by Sarah M. Dorsey pretty closely. Here’s how it all went down.

First we built the headboard frame using 1/4″ fiberboard and pine 2x2s. Our fiberboard measured 60″ x 36″.

Headboard Assembly

Then we measured and drilled holes for the 26 buttons. One of the most time consuming parts of this project was covering all those buttons! We used a navy velveteen fabric which was way too thick for the standard button kit. A combination of patience and hot glue eventually did the trick.

Button Holes Drilled

After the holes were drilled, we put down the foam.

First Layer Foam

I found this green 2″ thick foam at Joann Fabrics during a sale and the 1″ thick white foam came from Hobby Lobby. The foam was easily one of the most expensive parts of the project.

Second Layer Foam

I used a meat thermometer to poke holes in the foam from the back side and then a serrated kitchen knife to cut away the excess foam from the front.

Button Holes Cut

Next it was tufting time! First, let me say, this is not a one-person job. I attempted to tuft this bad boy myself one afternoon and got one button on (poorly) before giving up an hour later! You really need two people to apply enough tension to get nice deep tufts.

We laid the headboard across a few chairs so one person could be underneath the headboard and the other could be working on top. We put down some cotton batting and then our velvet, making sure to leave lots of extra material around the edges.

Velvet and Batting

Stephen would send a long needle (using doubled-up extra strength thread) up through the back of the headboard, through the foam, batting, and fabric, and I would thread on the button and send it back down. I’m not going to lie, getting the fabric to lay correctly and finding a good method to tie off the buttons took forever! At this point I was pretty sure this project would be a flop.

Tufting Headboard

Amazingly, after several more buttons, the headboard started to look okay. We ended up using washers on the back of the headboard to tie off the thread. I would push down on the button as hard as I could so Stephen had enough slack to tie the thread. A few of our threads broke during this process, which meant we had to redo that tuft all over again. We were so glad when the last button was in place.

Headboard Tufted

Here’s a look at the back of the headboard, where you can see the washers anchoring the tufts.

Washers Securing Tufts

The next step was stapling the fabric to the back of the headboard, covering the legs with fabric, and adding nailhead trim. Here’s a look at the headboard pre-trim.

Headboard Minus Nailhead

I had saved the leftover brass trim strips from our first DIY headboard project, and amazingly I had more than enough for this headboard, too.

We’re working on finishing up our master bedroom, so here’s just a peek of the bed area and how the headboard turned out.

Headboard Final

What do you think of the finished product? To say we’re happy with how it turned out would be an understatement! We LOVE our new bed!

Headboard After

As for the cost, we figure the total ended up around $150. Certainly not cheap and not much cheaper than some tufted headboards we’ve seen online. I think the project was worth it since we got exactly the headboard we wanted, but based on the hours we spent on it, I’m not sure we’ll tackle another one of these any time soon!

I’m working on a before and after post for our master bedroom. Hopefully it won’t be too long before that post goes up, but since today is my due date with baby girl #2, no guarantees! Thanks for reading. 🙂

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