Headboard Retrofit

Annnnnd we’re back with the last step in the making of our new, luxe headboard.  Get all the details on the tufting here and see how we made the arms here.  Pretend that it hasn’t taken me weeks to pound all these out for you and we’ll be well on our way to a harmonious and constructive blogger/reader relationship based on mutual trust and understanding.  ;)

Right after we got hitched, we made our way down the road from our new house to our favorite thrift store in Steubenville, Ohio where we found and purchased a new-to-us bedroom set.  We paid $100 for the solid wood four-post bed, long dresser, and tall dresser.  It wasn’t exactly the style I would’ve picked up new at the store but we needed something and our teeny, newlywed budget loved this set.

I know it’s hard to see the entire thing with all those pillows in the way but here’s what the bed used to look like and what it looks like now after we retrofit the new headboard right over the old:
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“How?”, you might ask.  Well, let me tell you.  Quick though because all the kids are apt to wake up in the next half hour.

The posts on the bed simply screw on and off so, off they came.  IMG_7829

Next we had to remove those two pieces of trim at the top of the headboard.  If they hadn’t been as bulky and thick as they were, we probably could’ve left them there but, alas, they had to go or the new headboard wouldn’t have fit in between the mattress and old headboard.  I thought it’d be as easy as removing the three screws holding them in…IMG_7830

…but once the screws were out, I still couldn’t get them off because they were also glued on.  In came Anthony and his hammer to the rescue with a few solid taps and that brought us to the new blank slate.
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Pan to the new headboard…

Before attaching it to the old headboard, we attached the arms.  Along the back of the plywood we used to make the headboard, we had to place a few boards – two 1 x 4s on the top 1/3 of each side, a 1 x 4 close to the bottom, and a 1 x 4 plus a 2 x 4 along the entire top.plywoodboard 
Those boards needed to be there, not only for extra support for the plywood but also so that the screws that would attach the arms had a place to sink into.
arm8The top of the headboard had to be extra thick so that it sat flush at the back with the arms, which were extra deep in order to completely cover the existing bed posts.

In order to attach the new we had to construct it so that it, in a sense, slid right over the old headboard.  Screws would be placed through the arms into the side posts of the old headboard and from the back of the old headboard into the 1 x 4 along the back of the new.   IMG_7870
And then we realized shortly before we went to install it that we (ok, I) mismeasured and that the 1 x 4 across the middle-back needed to be moved down so that it was between the old and new headboards.  My.  Bad.  #pregnancybrainIMG_7870too

Then it was up and at ‘em as Anthony and a friend slipped the new over the old.  It sounds super easy but really, we didn’t realize how heavy the entire headboard was being that it was solid wood and so when I write they “slipped” the headboard on, what I really mean it that they heaved it on.  They pulled the entire bed out from the wall and one held the tufted back while the other attached the arms.

Here it is on but unsecured; just standing on it’s own between the mattress and old headboard:IMG_7913

To give you an idea of how it slipped over the old headboard, here’s the old just prior…IMG_7908

…and here’s a mock-up of how the new fits on:
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Three screws were placed into the back of the old headboard straight into that 1 x 4 spanning the lower back of the new headboard and then Anthony put a couple of screws through the side of the legs into the posts of the old bed frame.

Here is the view from the back:IMG_7917IMG_7916
See how the arms extend back past the plywood in order to cover the posts?  That might help explain why we needed to add the 2 x 4 along the top of the new headboard – so that the back of the arms would be flush with the top back of the headboard.

I think McGyver would be proud, don’t you?

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The entire headboard cost us around $100 to make from start to finish.  That’s not including the tools we used (drill, a friend’s jigsaw to make the curves at the top of the arms, and a measuring tape) nor does it include the foam since that was given to us.  I could be a tad biased but the quality of this headboard would probably make it over $1000 retail so I’m throwing confetti over what we did (and didn’t) spend.  Oh what a little vision and elbow grease can achieve, no?

IMG_7984picm(Sources:  the sheets and duvet are both originally from Target but found at Dirt Cheap ($28 altogether), the lamps are updated thrift store finds, the euro pillows are down-filled, West Elm scores from a local resale group ($12 for both) and their covers I recently made along with the matching shades, the square decorative pillows actually belong in the living room, the small lumbar pillow was a thrift store find but originally from Target, and the faux bamboo mirror was a resale group find.)

I’ve conked out at the nursing wheel a bajillion times during these midnight feedings and I blame it all on the softness of what’s behind my head these days in our new headboard.  Also, it’s funny how much a luxe headboard will do to a room – it makes even the messiest moments look incredible.  Our bed is the home of the contents of the laundry basket waiting to be folded and with the headboard in the background, the piles of clothes look just fab.

Anyway, this is the last you’ll hear of the headboard but probably not the last you’ll see of it.  I still love it so much I take trips to our bedroom door just so I can peek in on it.  I can’t wait to gussy up those nightstands and figure out some wall decor to compliment it but something tells me I’ll have to wait until we’re well out of the newborn stage.

So, retrofitting.  It’s an awesome way to take what you already have and turn it into something else.  What have you retrofit?  I know there are some of you who have genius ideas that need to be unleashed!  Go ahead!  The comment section is open!  :)   

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We are skimming right past summer and into fall and, for us, that means back into a routine of sorts and hopefully more consistent blogging.  This summer was crazy busy with Anthony being gone a lot for youth group trips and then a week-long family vacation with my extended family and, oh yeah, we added another human to the fam bam.  So I guess I should rephrase and say it’s been busy with a capital B.  But, that’s how I like it.  It’s better than boredom.  Am I right?  ;)

3 comments

  1. It really came out awesome and what a good idea to retrofit. Hmmmmmmm! The wheels are spinning...

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Lisa!! Spinning wheels are always good! :)

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