Make an Upholstered Headboard

Imagine creating a soft, cushioned headboard you can comfortably lean back on in just a few hours. See your headboard in the colour, shape and design you want. You can make your own with fabrics such as cotton, silk, denim, linen and leather, or many people are looking for faux leather beds as an alternative. It can be the focal point in your bedroom and a work of art.

Steps to make your headboard:

  1. Measure the width of your bed. You want your headboard slightly wider than your mattress. The height of your headboard can be as tall as you want it to be.
  2. Draw the shape you want onto the foam core board, using a pencil and the measurements. If this is your first time, you may want to start out with a rectangle.
  3. Cut along the outline repeatedly until you cut all the way though the board.
  4. Use the headboard measurements to cut three layers of fusible fleece. Fusible fleece adds body, shape and softness to fabric. You can fuse or melt this fleece to other materials, including fabric, wood and foam core board. Fusing keeps the fleece from moving around.
  5. Place the three fusible fleece layers on top of the foam core board, aligning all of the edges.
  6. Set a pressing cloth on top of the fleece and lightly spray the pressing cloth with water. Iron on top of the pressing cloth using the wool/steam setting. This process will fuse all three layers of fleece to the core board. Iron the entire area.
  7. Cut the fabric a few inches larger than the board. Use enough fabric and position it so its edges wrap around the board’s sides and reach the back.
  8. Change the iron temperature setting for the fabric type, then press the fabric onto the fleece with the iron.
  9. Cut a strip of fusible adhesive and iron it to the fabric edges. Remove the paper backing of the adhesive and fuse the fabric to the back of the core board with the iron.
  10. Cut another piece of fabric, this time 1/2 inch smaller than the measurements of the foam core board.
  11. Position the fabric piece onto the back of the core board so it covers the already fused fabric’s raw edges. Fuse the fabric piece to the board.
  12. Glue trim along the headboard edges using a glue gun. Trim can include decorator ribbon, lace, beads, tassels, fringe or Italian braids.
  13. Hang your upholstered headboard on the wall using self-adhesive hook and loop fasteners. Stick the reclosable fasteners to the wall and to the back of your headboard. Add glue to the part of the fastener on your headboard to reinforce the strength.


Find a headboard at a thrift store to upholster or use one you already have. You can also cut plywood into any shape.

Put a slipcover over your headboard after a while to create a whole new look.

Make a bed skirt in the same fabric as the headboard. This gives your bed the look of a full frame.