Pomp And Circumstance

DIY Linen Nailhead Headboard

Posted in D.I.Y., Decor Files by Miss Circumstance on March 23, 2012

I’ve been wanting to make a headboard for a looonnng time. Their are a a lot of fun ideas out there, and some gorgeous fabrics in awesome colors, but I kinda knew I wanted to do something neutral so I could change my bedding or bedroom paint color (yup. I paint often enough I have to take that into consideration) when my fickle tastes changed. And I love me some linen. So with that I took the plunge into the land of nail heads and fabric and other stuff, and decided to make a white linen headboard, with silver nail heads.

Step 1- Purchase and lay out supplies. I used

  • plywood
  • thin foam (bought at a local fabric store)
  • batting
  • spray adhesive
  • burlap
  • fabric
  • staple gun (in my opinion every girl needs a staple gun. They are cheap and I have used it countless times)
  • upholstery railhead tacks (12 packs. Had no idea it would take that many. Good thing they were under 2 bones a pack)

I think all this stuff was under 50 bucks. I already had the fabric so that saved me that expense.

Step 2- I used blue painters tape to lightly hold the foam in place so I could cut it to size, then used spray adhesive to attach the foam to the plywood.

Step 3- Cut two strips of burlap to use like a bandaid over the seams where the foam sections meet (this is a tip I read when poking around on how to make this thing). Use spray adhesive to attach burlap.

Step 4- Use staple gun to attach battling over foam, folding the batting over the edges and stapling on to what will be the backside of the board.

Step 5- Next your ready to attach the fabric that will actually show. Break out the staple gun again. She’s your new best friend.

Now you have a puffy cushy pad all ready. And those weird spots are shadows from the light fixture, not how the fabric looks.

And this is the part where I typically get so into my project I forget to take pictures. My name is Miss Circumstance. And I am a-dummy-who-forgets-the-same-thing-over-and-over-again.

What I did not document was that I covered the back-side with fabric also, and used nail heads spaced every few inches to secure it in place. I also did not document the nailing in of the nail heads. But, my tip for you is start on the bottom part that doesn’t show, cause it definitely takes some practice to get them in a straight line.

I screwed in two pieces of plywood to the back of the headboard, about 12″across, to act as legs. These went all the way to the ground. We then attached a 2×4 to the back frame of the bed, and that gave us something to screw the headboard legs into. Here’s a little mock-up for you-

I put the nail heads about 2 1/2″ inches in…I like it with a little bit more of a border like that.

All in all I would say this is a pretty easy project, a 2 on the scale of difficulty level. Go for it!

6 Responses

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  1. ariella42 said, on March 23, 2012 at 12:43 pm

    Great idea and it looks like it turned out wonderfully!

  2. […] Gun- A must for re-covering any furniture in fabric. I used this for my DIY headboard, to recover a basic cork bulletin in linen, to recover seat cushions in new fabric…I staple […]

  3. Diane said, on June 5, 2013 at 3:47 am

    Can you give details on sizes and amts of material needed for a queen headboard?

  4. Miss Circumstance said, on June 6, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    Oh good question! The piece of plywood I used was 5’x3′. So that will dictate the size you need for foam, batting and fabric. The foam can be the exact size of the plywood, but the batting and fabric need to a few inches bigger on all sides. Hope that helps!

  5. Beth said, on July 27, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Thanks for the awesome tutorial! I just finished upholstering my headboard, and it turned out great. I used about 3″ of foam on the plywood to create a super cushy headboard.. Now I’m just concerned that the nailhead trim won’t go all the way through to the plywood since the nails I’m looking at are only about a 1/2 inch long. Is this an issue, or does the foam/fabric hold the nailhead trim in pretty well? That might be a silly question, but I’ve never done anything like this before.🙂

  6. Miss Circumstance said, on July 27, 2014 at 7:39 pm

    Hmmm….not a silly question at all. It sounds border line to me. I used actually individual nail heads, and not nailhead trim. I don’t remember how long they were, but my foam was for sure not that thick. You’ll have to test and see. But let us know what you find out! That will help us for sure!


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