Tuesday, May 7, 2013

A High End DIY Project: Part Three

Alright, so part three, are you ready for it? Did you miss part one, or part two? Well, go play catch up and I'll be right here when you get back. Seriously, I will! And grab something to drink and eat too, this is a long one!

Ok, so firstly, let me go ahead and put out there that I am not the authority on headboard building, nor am I really all that handy. I'm sure, that there will be those of you who are handy, or who are the authority on headboard building who will look at this post and shrug your shoulders, point your finger, and say: "You should have ..." and you're likely very right. But, what's done is done, and it's beautiful ... in my opinion.

Now, part one talked about the inspiration. Obviously, you all know what I was attempting to recreate on a much smaller budget. Part two talked about the shopping, and I have to say I was quite impressed with the ease of finding all the things to make this piece a reality. Now you get to see how I put it all together ... in my dining room, which normally looks like this:

But for this little DIY project, it turned into my workshop! Now tools. I needed a drill, some screws, a palm sander (to clean up the rough edges), a hand saw, and a miter box, and wood glue. I also had paint, painters caulk, and a paint brush since I was going to paint the piece once it was constructed, and a drop cloth to keep my seagrass clean.

I started with the pre-cut piece of plywood. It was 4' x 5' for my queen size bed. Knowing that I would need to have legs for the headboard, and because I wanted it to be tall, I built a frame of 2x3 studs to make the whole thing sturdy, the right height: 6', and wider than just a simple piece of plywood.

First I layed out the studs, spread a line (or three) of wood glue atop them, and then put the plywood on top.

Then once everything was in place, I put a screw through the plywood and into the stud every 12" along the edge where the stud made the frame. The screw was going to be covered up later ... so screwing it to the face of the board is fine.

The finished edge of the piece was important, because it's something you can see when you walk into the room. So, I used 1x3 premium pine to cover up the ugly side(s) of the framing. Using clamps, woodglue, and nails, the whole thing went together pretty easily.

The corners of the 1x3 were mitered because of the look from the side. After all, I was trying to cover up an unfinished edge, and not mitering the corners would have given me one more. So, after some time with the hand saw and my mitering box, I was all good to go.

Next, before I put the moulding on the front edge, I had to pick my paint color. I had lots of different samples ... and after some testing and mixing I found the right shade. Then it was time to pull out the handsaw and the miter box again, and get the mitered corners on the pre-primed MDF moulding that I picked up in Part two.

I again, like the sides with the 1x3 pieces, used finish nails and wood glue, and then closed up the gaps (yes, there were gaps!!) with painters caulk. With that done ... all that was left to do was paint:

And voila. Finished. Eh, not so fast!

Now the part that I dreaded and where I'm going to chime in and tell you what you can do to make this SO MUCH easier on yourself! I upholstered the piece after I had put the moulding on. So unless you're a master upholsterer or have a very good staple gun, you can do what I should have done, save yourself the heartache later, and put the moulding on last. You'll need to measure exactly where the moulding lands and upholster only the interior measurement of that ... but it will be cleaner than what I achieved.

But since I didn't do it that way ... here's how I did it:

First, I grabbed my staple gun, foam, batting, fabric, spray adhesive, Liquid Stitch, trim tape, iron, starch, and ironing board, plus that wheel of nailheads from part two. Then I layed out my foam, which I adhered to the plywood with spray adhesive on the plywood and back of the foam.

Once that was down, I covered the whole thing with the batting I scored a great deal on from my slipcover maker, and an old sheet that I had laying around. It was clean, promise!

Stapled all the way around the edge and cleaned off the excess. Then it was time to press out the folds from the crafting bolt at JoAnns. Burlap is a stubborn fabric. I'm just saying. Put your iron on it's highest setting and be prepared to iron for a while.

Once you're done, all that's left is to put it on just like you did the batting and staple away, trimming the edges when it's all down.

I used two pieces of burlap because of the weave being so open. And, I found that using a cerrated edge kitchen kinfe to cut away the excess fabric was much easier than using scissors.

Then came time to put the trim on. That called for my handy dandy Liquid Stitch. I love this stuff, and it's really easy to use. It dries clear, and holds tight pretty quickly after putting it on. I know that some people use hot-glue, but I don't like the lump you get under the fabric. You just put the Liquid Stitch on the back of the trim tape and follow along the edge of your moulding gluing the tape to the burlap.

Sidenote: If you do it the way I should have done it, after you put the trim tape on, you'd put your pre-painted moulding on the piece.

Once I cussed a view hundred cuss words, and then cried ... just a little, I was happy with the way that the trim tape looked and I put the nailheads on. Again, I used the nailhead strip from part two, and not individual nailheads. It was much easier, and it took far less time.

At this point the only thing left to do was attach the bedframe (a simply metal hollywood frame) to the legs created by the 2x3's with screws and start working on the slipcover. I was going to have the slipcover made by the fantastic slipcover maker who does all of my slips for home and clients. But since this is a DIY post, I figured I'd suffer through and stay true to the Do It Yourself layout. It hasn't been easy ... but it's nearly finished though, and as soon as it's done ... I'll give you all a peek at the finale!


  1. unreal can't wait to see the finished headboard!!!

  2. I'm impressed! Can't wait to see it in the room!

  3. Love the bed and the tutorial. Thank you.

  4. Artie! You're turning into freaking Martha Stewart LOL
    Seriously...amazing job and I love the grey with the burlap

    xxx's kelley

  5. This is looking really good.

  6. This was wonderful so the steps and I love how it looks. Looking forward to see it in the room.

  7. This project is coming out AMAZINGLY classy! Great job and love your choices for fabrics and colors. Your tutorial was easy to understand and I like how you posted a 'lesson learned' to save us time and effort when we try this.
    Thank you!

  8. This looks so good! I want to do a headboard in some kind of curvy shape one day! Thanks for sharing?

  9. Artie sweetie .... beautiful job!
    Love your choice of paint colour on the frame as well. Looking forward to seeing the end result.
    Hugs -Brenda-
    P.S: Re the Liquid Stitch. It is magnificent stuff isn't it? One thing I particularly love about it is, there is no risk of discolouration over time unlike some other adhesives.

  10. I LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!! Wow! I can say, we all cannot wait to see what it looks like against the wall! You have inspired all of us!

    What a stunning bed!

  11. I love it. It's going to be lovely when in place.

  12. Artie, you are filled with ingenuity and creativity- in a word, wow!

  13. Artie you amaze me!! I am so excited to see the reveal!

    May I order a cross bottle from you?
    Art by Karena