Thursday, March 13, 2014

DIY headboard

This project is something I have wanted to do for a very long time. Again, I am working on remembering to take more pictures as we do our projects. But, none the less, I want to share how we went about this one. We bought a complete bedding set about 5 years ago, while I loved it then, our style has changed and we were ready for something new. It came with a 3 drawer dresser, a 6 drawer dresser with a large mirror, two nightstands and the bed frame and headboard. One thing you will learn about us is we like change, we like to freshen everything up and change what we see everyday. Since buying the furniture, we have sanded, primed, painted, moved to other rooms, and almost all of the pieces have been altered in some way. On our newest quest to revamp the bedroom, we sold everything. The nightstands, the dressers, and I attempted to sell the headboard before I realized I should just try to reupholster it. What did I have to lose? $50 in materials? It was well worth it.
The completed headboard
The original
(Not the actual, but ours was very similar. The black leather with the dark wood frame.)
Remember how I said we like change.. well, last year it became this...
All of the bedroom furniture was painted that tan/ grey color. and we put in the silver nail heads to give it a lighter look.
Also, note the BLUE wall, we wanted to do an accent wall in the room and while we liked the blue for a while it got a little too bright for our current taste. 2 coats of primer and 2 layers of Valspar paint later... it was a headache.

Now, enough of the back stories, lets move on to the actual tutorial!

  1. We pulled out all the previous nail heads. This was great and saved us time when putting the new ones in because we had pre-drilled all of the little holes about half way so it would be easier to hammer in the nail heads. I highly recommend doing this. Not only did it save us the hassle of pulling them out if they didn't go in straight, it gave us a guide as to where the nail heads went once they were covered with fabric. Every headboard will be different, but ours ended up being spaces about an inch apart. Add more if you like more, less if you only want a few. Main idea here, pre-drill the holes!
  2. Unscrew the backing of your headboard. Ours is covered by a big piece of thin plywood. Pull that away and under it should be the frame. We had a bunch of screws in ours to get the actual leather part off, but once we got all those out, we used a rubber mallet to tap the whole thing out of the frame.
  3. I went and bought some cheap batting at the local Joann's Fabrics because I knew I was going to cover the black leather with a lighter fabric and I didn't want it to show through. So my first step was to staple gun that into place. Make sure when you are doing this, it is all pulled tight over the entire piece. Any wrinkles in this will surely show when you cover with your fabric. The corners aren't that important at this step, just make sure they are not big and bulky, remember you still have to put this piece back into the actual frame.
  4. Onto the fabric. We have a king size bed, so I bought three yards of drapery fabric to make sure everything got covered. I ended up with plenty extra to play around with so I could make sure everything was right. IRON YOUR FABRIC. Huge step, yes you will be pulling everything tight, but you want to start off with it being pressed so you don't have to do any extra work. Little wrinkles are ok, but if the fabric has fold marks, you want to make sure to get them out as best as you can.
  5. Start in the middle of either the top or the bottom and begin to staple. Be aware of how much extra you have on either side, you will be using this same fabric to cover the wood frame once you piece it all back together. Stop before the corners and begin to play with the fabric. There is not exact way for me to tell y'all how to go about this part. It's all trial and error. The main thing I can say is to try to make it as flat as possible so you don't have trouble getting it back into the frame. Continue around, pulling the sides tight, run your hand along the fabric to help. My husband and I did this together and I highly recommend having another pair of hands to help. Once you get done with that, put the piece back into the frame... it may be a little tighter this time around but just wiggle it in there and take your time. It will look something like this when you get to that point.
  6. Gently pull all of the loose fabric to make sure nothing got stuck. Start in the middle of either the top or bottom, pull tight over the wood frame and staple behind. ( I got excited and started to place the nail heads before finishing the stapling) Stop a few inches before the corners and start to plan. Again, there is not an exact way to do this. There will be lots of fabric, so you just have to find a way to piece it together. Almost like wrapping a present, but do remember which way you are doing it so the corners match. If you do the long side over the short side or vice versa. The sides are a little more tricky, at least with the way our bed frame is. Ours is thin then as it goes down it gets thicker. So, I had to manipulate the fabric for quiet a while to get it where I wanted it. This takes lots of patients and there will be some creases you may not want but only you will notice them in the long run. Around the bottom posts also take some time and thought. I'm sure there is a "right" way to do this but I am more of the, "lets wing it and see what happens" type so again, just play with it, cut the fabric if you have to, use a glue gun to help things lay straight.
  7. Almost done! Begin to place your nails heads. I just used the actual nail head and felt around where the hole should be. By pre-drilling your holes about half the depth of the nail head, you can place them and then hammer them all. Be sure if you are using a light fabric, clean your hammer, you don't want to miss the nail head or get too close to the fabric and end up with a mark from your hammer.
NOW pat yourself on the back and enjoy!! I am 8 months pregnant and have a 17 month old running around so it was no easy task, but if we can do it so can you!
You can see the bottom corners aren't perfect, but the reality is that I'll be the only one to really notice, especially once all the bedding and pillows are on. So give yourself a break if its not 100% perfect, to everyone else it will be.
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