How to Make a Padded Headboard: A Step-by-Step DIY Guide


When you find out how to make a padded headboard, you might be surprised to learn just how easy it is. If you want a headboard that looks great and gives you some comfort and support when you're curled up in bed with a favorite book, there's no need to shell out lots of cash for a readymade one. In a few simple steps, you can make your own, for pennies on the dollar.

How to Make a Padded Headboard - Step by Step

Before we can get into exactly how to make a padded headboard, we first have to take a look at the materials you'll need. As with any interior design project, gathering all of your materials before you begin makes life a whole lot easier on you (nothing gets the blood boiling faster than spending all day working on some project only to discover at the very last step that you are missing the crucial finishing touch - and you can bet all of the stores will be closed by the time you figure it out!). Here is what you'll need:

  • Plywood
  • Fabric
  • Upholsters' foam
  • Batting
  • Spray glue
  • Staple gun
  • Drill
  • Router
  • Keyhole bracings
  • Sewing kit
  • Screwdriver
  • Accessories for decoration

Sounds like a pretty general list, right? The specifics of what you'll need depends on your room. The plywood would be the base for the headboard, so you need enough to span the width of your bed and you need the length to be as tall as you want your headboard to be. You can use one single panel or smaller, individual panels to make up the width of the board. Very tall headboards can be a nice touch in a large bedroom, while something a little smaller in scale will work in small rooms. For the fabric and upholsters' foam, you'll need enough to completely cover the plywood and wrap around the back to be secured - keep in mind also that the fabric will have to stretch over both the foam and plywood. The accessories are a matter of taste - you may want buttons, snaps or some other item to jazz up your headboard design.

Now, it's time to get started:

  • Take the keyhole bracings and put them on the back of your plywood pieces. These will be the things that you use to attach the headboard to the wall, so space them accordingly. Use your screwdriver to attach the bracings. It may help if you use the end of the screwdriver to dig a little space in the plywood for the screws before you start putting them in place.
  • Spray the front of your plywood boards with glue and attach the foam.
  • Spread your fabric out on your work surface, print side down, and then batting on top of that. Place your plywood in the center of the fabric and batting, so that the foam side is down.
  • Wrap the edges of the fabric and batting around the plywood and use your staple gun to hold everything in place. You may need to repeat this process a few different times if you are using more than one plywood panel for your headboard.
  • Now, the core part of your padded headboard is essentially finished. All you have to do is add your decorations and accessories to get it looking exactly how you want it.

You Padded Headboard Projects

Did you follow the advice in this article and make your own padded headboard, or do you have some tips and techniques to share from past headboard projects you've done? We want to hear about it! Let us in on your stories by leaving a comment at the bottom of the page.

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How to Make a Padded Headboard: A Step-by-Step DIY Guide