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There are so many things I’ve wanted to put in this section of our blog, but I never really got around to it. Obviously.

But. Unemployment means I have the time to do it! Silver lining.

This weekend I want to show you how incredibly easy it is to upholster your own headboard, absolutely no need to spend $200 on a brand new one. Or on a new bed frame for that matter, if you happen to not be crazy about the one you have.

When we moved to San Jose, we took the opportunity to upgrade our mattress to a queen sized one. That also meant we needed a new bed frame, but we’re on a tight budget. That means craigslist. I spent a number of days looking for a bed frame, preferably espresso colored, with a head and foot board. A nice one, a grown up bed frame. I, of course, have more expensive tastes than I can afford.

I finally got tired of sleeping on the floor so I pulled the trigger on a $100 IKEA frame that I found nearby. It was a little beat up, but it had the slats that we needed for the memory foam mattress, it was low profile and it wouldn’t take up too much wall space.

Headboard Before

Unsightly ding

Unsightly ding

Scratch across the front

Scratch across the front

But half price was acceptable for me. I probably should have negotiated. People do that to me all the time on craigslist, but I can’t ever bring myself to do it for some reason.

Anyway, this is definitely the easiest idea I’ve pulled from Pinterest. Not at all like turning an old dresser into a tv stand. THAT project…oooh that project. I’ll tell you about it someday, but I’m still a little sore.

However, this one, this one you can do in less than an hour. And you need only 5 things, plus a bed frame you don’t mind putting a few holes in. And the nail trim of course is optional, but I just love the look. It’s probably cheaper to buy a box of individual nail heads, rather than a continuous rope like I found at Jo-ann, but if you want to do this in less than an hour, if you want to not hate this project, buy the rope.

You’ll need:
Staple gun (Home Depot, $8.97)
Batting (Jo-ann, 72X90, on sale for $8.99)
Fabric (IKEA panel curtain that didn’t work for what I wanted, recycled, $9.99)
Nailhead Trim (Jo-ann, $15.39 after coupon)
Rubber Mallet or Hammer (already in my tool box)

I simply pulled the mattress out a bit, not the whole way. I already broke a sweat trying to drag that elephant of a frame away from the wall by myself.

I also had to dislodge sleeping kitty.

Disturbed kitteh

Ok, three simple steps.

1.Cover the headboard with the batting. Staple ‘er good. I went with 2 layers, just enough to give it a little cushion but not enough to make it really stand out. And I didn’t bother being anal about the back, no one’s going to see it.


2. Cover the batting with your fabic. Staple ‘er good.

photo 1 (10)

You can fold your corners however you wish. I chose to tuck one corner into the other, folding the top triangle diagonally over the other, like the way you start a corner when you’re wrapping presents.

photo 2 (8)

3. Decorate with nailhead trim. No stapling, just hammering. Only every fifth nailhead is a real one that you hammer into the frame.

photo 3 (10)

photo 1 (9)

photo 2 (7)

If you don’t have a rubber mallet, no worries. Tie a dish cloth around your hammer to soften the blow.

photo 4 (9)

And that’s it. Step back and admire your handy work.

photo 3 (9)

It really makes a hell of a difference to the bed, turning an ordinary wood-veneered frame into a much more luxe piece but without the luxe price.

Final Count:
Bed Frame — $100
Materials — $43.34

And I’ve got the staple gun to use indefinitely, and half of that batting left over for another project!

Come back next weekend and I’ll talk about how I built these nightstands:

photo 4 (8)