Making a Basic Upholstered Head Board


  • $12 for 1/4″ plywood
  • $20 for fabric
  • $27 for extra loft batting


  • about 30 min for putting it together.
  • probably an hour of shopping
there's quite a bit of ranting & rambling in this post.  be warned.

Our bed recently got upgraded from sitting on the floor to having pallets underneath.  Yep, pallets.  Why pallets, you ask?  Well, the basic metal bed frame squeaks & I always have a fear of falling through the middle.  So, I prefer to have my bed sitting on a solid foundation, i.e. the floor, or platform.  Since our bedroom is large but not quite big enough for a platform bed, we kept brainstorming.

I initially grabbed the first pallet when we went wine tasting. My grand vision was to make a headboard out of 2 pallets.  Wouldn’t that be really rustic and creative?  1 pallet grew to 2 (thanks to a willing and helpful bf).  Unfortunately, the 2 did not match!!! oh darn!  1 pallet was just too narrow standing behind the bed by itself.

After more pallet hunting & brainstorming later, I decided to make a upholstered headboard instead.

Trekking out to Colma from SF (I know, such a LONG 8 mile drive!), I was happily browsing away in Jo-Ann.  I had decided that I needed 72″ of fabric.  Not bad.  However, I somehow thought the prices I saw was per foot, instead of per yard (yes, quite silly, but that just showed how inexperienced I am at buying fabric… and also made me miss being in a metric-based country, where calculation was simply moving the decimal point!).

Anyhoo…, foam also turned out to be quite expensive (well, expensive in the sense that I was still in my false yardage calculation state of mind).  I took the advice of a store staff to go with the extra-loft/thick batting and get the thickness by using a super large sheet and fold it a few times.

Finally I got all my components home.  🙂

The assembly process was surprisingly quick.

Step 1: wipe down the plywood.  It was pre-cut at Home Depot when I bought it.  They will do the first 2 cuts for free if you need it.

Step 2: iron the fabric.  ahhh, pretty coral pattern.  I think it’s not too girl-y.

Step 3: fold the batting as many times as I could to cover the board & staple it.  I did this process quicker than I expected and had too much fun to take pictures.

Step 4: staple the fabric all over it.  Try to make the fabric as smooth as I could.  Ta-da!  I got a headboard. 🙂


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