Making a Tufted Headboard

Tuesday, February 26, 2013



In my last post I said that I would tell you all about DIY-ing a headboard. What I'm really going to do is show you the 'tutorial' we followed and how we screwed up. Sometimes when I make suggest Chad start a project I get overly excited and then impatient. Sometimes I think it just takes too long to do something that isn't really important-like measuring. This may have happened with the headboard. But...at least this time it was not completely my fault.

Here is the tutorial we mostly followed from Schue Love. I wanted my headboard to have less tufting near the top and Chad wanted it to have less tufting so it was less work.


I drew out a plan of the size and how many tufts I thought I wanted and then transfered those measurements to the plywood we bought from Rona.




So far, so good. Then we started marking out the cut in order to round the top. Perhaps in hindsight we should have gotten a pencil and a string or a rounded edge measuring thingy but-hey- I was impatient and we had started this and we were going to finish it as quickly as possible. After the wonky line was done, Chad cut it out with a cordless circular saw. The saw kept running out of power and apparently the saw to use is a jig-saw and not a circular saw as it doesn't do rounded corners very well.



Then Chad drilled holes in the pre-marked spots for the soon to be tufted buttons to go. You will notice that Chad has changed his clothes so it obviously did not happen all on the same day. Maybe I could do a Chad fashion post-I think Chad would like that- wouldn't you Chad?


Then we sprayed adhesive and attached the foam layer. You can see from the uncut end that we attempted the freehand curve more than once!


After the foam layer, we wrapped a layer of polyester batting around. Luckily my Mom was in town the next weekend and we attempted the upholstering. This is when we found out that our real first mistake was actually buying just enough fabric. Our other mistake was to let Chad make the fabric covered buttons. We bought all of the supplies listed in the original tutorial from Fabricville (or Fabricland for everyone outside of Quebec). The width of the fabric would have been enough (with some extra) to cover our king sized headboard...but then Chad cut the buttons out of that width.  



We adapted the tutorial and didn't end up using the zip-ties, just two large upholstery needles. I pushed one needle from the back through the hole we had pre-drilled until it came through on the front side. I then used that needle poking out as a guide for the other needle threaded with the button to be pushed through. Once the threaded button made it to back we stapled the thread to the plywood. Does that make any sense? It wasn't that difficult after the first few. We came to the conclusion that since the bottom area not covered in fabric could be hidden by the bed if we hung the headboard low enough we simply pinned the fabric down in place. While it's not perfect it only ended up costing us few hundred dollars which is a fraction of the price of buying a ready-made one.





2 Response to Making a Tufted Headboard

March 1, 2013 at 10:23 AM

So, um, I'm totally stalking your blog as a result of your fab sister. I thought you should know how effective your posts are - I'm pretty much dead set on getting rid of our clunky bed frame and replacing it with a homemade headboard ASAP (besides, with the ridiculous height of box spring + pillowtop mattress combos these days, who needs a bed frame anyway?!). So thanks for the inspiration, and sorry if my boyfriend is secretly shaking his fist in your direction for the extra work I'm about to cause him! (sorry I initially posted this under the wrong article haha!)

March 7, 2013 at 5:52 PM

Thanks Genee,

So true! That's pretty much how Chad is about every project I suggest we start. Then he's super proud after the fact and tells everyone about the things 'he's made'. Let me know if you have any questions about making the headboard- at least so you don't make the same mistakes.

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