Sunday, 1 April 2012

Comfy Cozy Headboard How-To

One of my favorite things about a big move is having the opportunity to work with a blank canvas! When it came to our move at the beginning of February, one of my first projects was creating a dramatic headboard for mine and JT's bedroom. Seeing as how the cost of headboards ranges from $250.00 to $1000.00 and up, I decided to have a go at making my own (with the help of JT's oh-so-wise mama). Considering that I had many of the materials needed on hand (extra plywood from a kitchen reno, pencils, measuring tape, a jigsaw, spray glue, and a staple gun), the entire project cost me under $60.00 - and only took a few hours. Here's how I did it:

  1. First came deciding what type of headboard I wanted. Tall or short? Simple or elaborate? Seeing as this was my first experience with upholstery, I ended up selecting a tall headboard in a rather simple design (the Cleveland style from the designs below).

  2. After measuring the width of my bed and determining how wide I wanted the headboard to be, I drew the Cleveland outline on the plywood (you can purchase plywood at your local hardware store) and carefully used the jigsaw to cut it out (okay, okay - I may have gotten help from JT's dad... or, you know, just asked him to do it for me).
  3. After the sawdust was swept away, I rolled the foam out onto the floor and placed the plywood over top of it, using it as a stencil to trace the Cleveland design onto the foam (which I purchased - along with the upholstery batting - for a mere $40.00 at good old Fabricland).
  4. After cutting the Cleveland shape into our foam, mama JT and I took it and the plywood outside (you can use any well-ventilated area), lay it on the ground face-up, and gave it a good thick spray of glue, pressing the foam to the wood as we sprayed (fyi – the glue dries almost immediately so move quickly).

  5. Now that we had the foam attached to the wood, we moved back inside. I spread the upholstery batting on the floor and lay the headboard (foam side down) on top of it. Working with JT’s mom, we made our way around the headboard, pulled the batting tight to the plywood and using the staple gun to secure it in place (be prepared - you’ll need lots of staples). At first I was worried about making it look neat, but gave up when I figured out that:

    a. it would be covered by fabric later on
    b. it would eventually be pushed against the wall and be invisible to the public eye (phew!)

  6. Once we had the batting firmly in place (and I mean FIRMLY), we lay the fabric on the ground (I purchased my fabric for $10.00/ 2 meters [enough for a queen-sized bed] at Fabricland). We placed the headboard (batting side down) on top of the fabric (if your fabric has a print, make sure you line it up with your headboard) and basically repeated step 5, pulling the fabric tight to the plywood and using the staple gun to secure it in place.

    **Tip: Because my fabric was relatively heavy, I found that the fabric at the 4 corners of the headboard was a little bit difficult to staple through – papa JT had a brilliant idea and screwed a little screw into each corner to keep the fabric in place.

  7. Once you’ve stapled the crap out of your fabric (really, that’s what it takes) flip that baby over and admire!

    In terms of attaching it to your bed, you can prop it between your bed and the wall or, if you’re a handyman (or have a talented handyman at your disposal – thank you again papa JT… I just can’t say it enough), rig the back of the headboard so that it can be attached to the wall.

    Sweet dreams!