Five Creative, Unusual Headboards You Can Make

Making your own distinctive headboard does not cost a lot of money. A few choice finds, and your headboard is born. Learn how to make five creative, unusual headboards here.

Headboards can be expensive in the stores. Searching store after store may prove fruitless even when designs are different. Sometimes, you just can’t find anything that fits your style and personality.

The answer is to make your own headboard relatively inexpensively. Here are five creative and unusual headboards you can make to suit your own style.

Fireplace Mantle Headboard

Old fireplace mantles range from plain to elaborate, and their prices vary according to this in addition to condition, size, age and materials used.

These mantles make wonderful headboards. Decide what you will do with the inside before you begin building. Some suggestions are:

Fill with a tufted or padded board Build shelves and use for storage Fill with a plain board and pictures

If the mantle is not wide enough to match the bed size, build two shelves similar to the mantle and attach or stand on each side.

Be sure to attach the mantle to the wall with appropriate fasteners, as most mantles tend to be heavy.

Tree Branch Lattice

Collect tree branches approximately ½” to 1″ in diameter and remove all side branches and leaves. Allow to dry completely inside the house so the wood acclimates to the conditions. This can take up to three months. Remove the bark, if desired.

Lay the branches in a square grid or in a diamond grid. You will need to cut some of the branches for the smaller side pieces, but for now, just lay them on top of each other.

With a marker, begin marking where the branches touch each other. Using a saw or knife, cut half the diameter of the branch away between the marks. You are making lap joints, where the two pieces will join and become the same thickness of the wood. This is going to take a while, so take your time for accuracy.

Using construction adhesive, place a dab in each lap joint and join the pieces together. As you dab, attach with screws from behind. Drill a pilot hole first to avoid splitting the wood. The screw should go through both pieces, but not out the other side. For example, use a ¾” screw for 1″ wood.

After all the long pieces are attached, measure the pieces needed for the sides, cut, groove and attach.

Stand your new headboard at the head of the bed. Attach to the bedframe or wall as desired.

Container Headboard

Dorm rooms and bedrooms with multiple children are pressed for space. To have a utilitarian headboard, create one quickly and easily. Begin with a toy/blanket chest at the head of the bed.

Stack storage containers of various sizes at either end, with smaller storage containers on top. For children, attach the containers to the walls with angle pieces, and do not make them tall enough for children to try to climb on.

Trompe-l’oeil Headboard

Trompe-l’oeil means “fool the eye” in French. Usually it means a mural that looks real, such as painting a 3D looking bookcase on the wall. People try to touch a book, only to find out it’s a painting.

Hire a local artist who needs to build their portfolio (art majors in college are a good source of manpower), explain the type of mural you need and let them paint. The effect is stunning.

Wrought Iron Fencing or Gate

A flea market find of an old wrought iron gate or fence makes a wonderful headboard. Get someone to help you lift if it’s heavy. Strip the old paint and rust off, and apply primer and paint in the desired color(s).

Alternatively, if the gate or fence section has interesting features such as leaves, flowers, and so forth, use faux metals to decorate them and create a headboard not found in any store.

Attach to the bed frame or lean against the wall.

Friends and family will marvel at your decorating skills when you tell them you made these headboards yourself. You might receive “hints” of future gift ideas.

Source: The author of this article has over 40 years of experience in diverse forms of DIY, home improvement and repair, crafting, designing, and building furniture, outdoor projects and more.

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