Tuesday, 3 April 2012
HOW TO: MAKE A HEADBOARD
If you're like me and you know little to nothing about wood and building materials, don't be afraid to get help. Bring your measurements to a hardware store and ask one of the employees for a hand - they're usually very knowledgeable about construction materials and home projects. I went to Home Depot and one of the guys in the lumber department taught me the best way to build the frame and showed me what supplies I would need. It's also a good idea to get the wood planks cut to size while you're at the hardware store (it's free most places) so that you don't have to bother doing it yourself.
4 Wooden Planks
8 1/4" Wooden Dowels
1 Roll of Extra-Thin Wire
Batting (pillow fluff)
Coloured Fabric (approx. 5' x 3'5")
Scrap Fabric (for the back)
STEP 1: TAKE MEASUREMENTS
You will also need to factor in the width of the boards that you are using. For instance I bought 3.5" pine boards, so the horizontal sections of my frame had to be cut 7" shorter than the total horizontal length (3.5" from each side). If you get confused, flag down an employee at the hardware store and they can help you figure it out.
STEP 2: DRILLS HOLES AND INSERT DOWELS
Next, gather all four planks and head over to the drill. One by one, secure each plank of wood with a wood clamp and then drill a hole for every mark. The holes should be deep enough to fit half of the dowel. Next, insert your dowels; put a little drop of carpenter's glue into each hole before hammering the dowel into the slot.
STEP 3: ASSEMBLE THE FRAME
If you find that one of your holes refuses to line up, then use the drill to (slightly!) widen the hole until the dowel can slide in. Don't be afraid to muscle the last couple of boards into place.
STEP 4: WIRE THE CENTRE
When you get to the far end, grab your wire cutters and cut off any excess chicken wire that's left. Use a pair of pliers to fold down the pokey ends of the wire - watch out, it's sharp!
STEP 5: ADD THE BATTING
This is the tricky part. Lay your fabric on top of the batting with the patterned side facing up (ie. the pattern and batting shouldn't be touching), then take a deep breath and flip the whole thing over. Now your fabric should be lying patterned-side down (ie. pattern against the floor) with the frame on top. Don't worry if the fabric is crooked, you can adjust it after securing the batting. Pull the lip of batting around the back of the frame and staple it down. Do this for every side of the frame expect the bottom.
STEP 6: COVER THE FRONT
Wrap the fabric around the back of the frame and start stapling it into place, pulling it tight as you go. When you get to the corners, fold the fabric like you would the corner of a birthday present and staple it down. When you get to the bottom board, flip the frame back over. Tuck the excess fabric under the batting (this is why you didn't staple the batting down on this side) and then staple it down as close to the bottom of the board as you can.
STEP 7: SEW ON THE BUTTONS
For each button, clip a small section of thin wire (about 8" is enough) and fold it in half. Thread the button onto the wire and then poke the sharp edges through the front of the headboard. Pull it through the batting and chicken wire on the other side. To make the headboard look indented or 'tufted', clamp your pliers at the base of the wire and twist them to tighten the button. It's much easier than trying to tighten them by hand. Repeat this until all the buttons are done or until your hand goes numb :)
STEP 8: COVER THE BACK
And there you have it!! This project took me two days and it's definitely one of the more challenging ones I've done. Mostly because I don't know anything about construction. But now I do. And you can too! I really love how it turned out and I can't wait to use it in September :) It was also much more cost-effective than buying a padded headboard, which can run anywhere from $200 to upwards of $1000! This only cost me about $50...schveet!