Thursday, October 15, 2009

design tips: headboards

I do not think that I have ever had a bed frame with a traditional, attached headboard (except when I was very young and not in control of my own decorating).  It is inevitably the aspect of a bedroom that I usually struggle with for awhile, eventually coming up with a unique solution. 

Because our current bedroom is so small, I did not want anything attached to the bed frame that would set the bed out any further from the wall, but rather something mounted on the wall.  I had previously framed some 60's wallpaper samples for the room, and landed on the idea of hanging them all in a row to create a "headboard".  I created this illusion by hanging them tight together and edging out on either side of the bed (rather than centered in the footprint of the bed), and I made sure to leave enough room to prop up with a pillow and read without bonking our heads.

In our guest room, I mounted a curtain rod on the wall above the bed, and have been rotating the "headboard" depending on my mood and the season.  Currently, I have one of my favorite wool blankets up  along with a really adorable vintage wool childs romper.

This particular technique is a favorite because I always have stacks of textiles and never enough room to display them all.  This offers a great opportunity to rotate stock, and I like that fact that it provides a soft headboard.
One of the guest rooms at the farm featured stacked antique mirrors acting as a headboard.

We restyled very few bedrooms on HGTV's "Freestyle" during my time as a designer, but this room was one of my favorites.  The concept of the show was to redo a room with what the homeowners' already had and not spend any money.  I found a bi-fold door (ya know those cheap shuttered models) in their basement and decided to make it into a headboard.  The producers looked at me like I had completely lost my mind, and they were all astounded at how great it looked mounted to the wall as a headboard.  It was simply dusted off, seperated into two sections and attached to the wall.  Clip-on lights add interest and save space in a small bedroom.  This bed also had an actual attached headboard, which I covered with a matchstick blind to soften and disguise the silver metal.

Doors, shutters, fences, textiles and wallpaper can all be put to use  as unique headboards that fit your room and personality.  The possibilities really are endless!


  1. Wonderful, creative ideas, Christine ... my fav is the wool blanket with the child's romper ... that one has great appeal.

  2. Thanks! It definitely makes the room feel cozy and ready for winter.