diy tufted headboard

03 April 2012

As I said last week, this isn’t my best project. I had high hopes, but it just didn’t turn out exactly like that picture in my head. But it’s okay~it’s good for you to see that not all diy projects turn out “look at this, it’s amazing and soooo easy!” :) And do you know how you pore and labor over something and that is ALL that is on your mind and it seems that every detail matters, but then once you get it up in the room, you realize it’s not as bad as you thought? And I’m NOT re-doing it, at least not this year. I’m happy with it for now, and maybe forever? I’ll try to tell you what I wish I would have done as we go along here.
We had this piece of pegboard downstairs from the previous owners and I was going to use it in the garage or down in the office, but I thought.."hey…..that could be a free headboard.” I cut a little off the edge to make it work as a queen headboard. If you buy a sheet of pegboard at Lowes or Home Depot, bring your measurements, and they should be able to cut it to size right there for you.march 2012 290 1

Next, I counted and marked off where we wanted the buttons/tufts to be and circled them. *if I did it again, I wouldn’t begin the tufts so close to the top*march 2012 295 1
We are in the process of switching the boys’ rooms around, so I had 2 twin foam toppers we were going to get rid of that I saved exactly for this:march 2012 301 1
Next, I hot glued some of my linen fabric (from JoAnns with a 50% off coupon = $16 for 2.5 yards) around the edges,march 2012 311 1
and then poked some thread through my marked holes to show where to tuft on the other side:
march 2012 309 1
And then, the logical thing to do would be to sew some buttons on right?
But oh no, I pulled out my staple gun instead…march 2012 315 1
and started “tufting” with my trusty staple gun where all the little threads came through.
march 2012 312 1
I found some flat back button kits on Ebay ($20 for 30 buttons) that I covered with the fabric. Tip on covering the buttons: a mallet is your best friend to just pound them together.march 2012 318 1*I think if I were to do it again, I would use smaller buttons? These ones were 1 1/4”*
Then, I just hot glued them over the staples.april 2012 025 1
And it’s not the most exact, beautiful thing in the world, but with some smashing good pillows and the mirror above it, I’m going to make it work!april 2012 028 1
I just pulled out our mattress a little, and it is resting on the box spring. That’s it! It is much more comfy to prop up against and read, and it cost under $40!
I think next time, I would go ahead and sew buttons on through the holes in the pegboard and use a little thicker foam to get better tufting. And be more patient and go slower and be more precise. And be genius and gorgeous and skinny and tan. Oh wait, we’re talking about the headboard! :)
Gah, what do you think? Or maybe we should wait and see it in the room to make a final judgment? Working on that…
 See you tomorrow, I’ll have the linky up at 11 a.m. eastern time! 320 Sycamore is now on Facebook~click here to come join us!


  1. I am sure u have already thought of this and I am sure there are reasons you haven't done it but couldn't you flip it around and make the top the bottom, and continue the tufting on the part that you left so it is not as close to the top. I realize this only solves one problem. I still think it looks great!!!

  2. Oh I think it turned out awesome, but I know what you mean when you had certain expectations. Love the neutral color and I'm sure you'll be adding some color and pattern. Can't wait to see how it all looks.

    Andrea xo

  3. I adore that you posted this project, even thought it didn't turn out exactly how you wanted. Your advice and suggestions give me the courage to try this, with the knowledge that even If it isn't perfect, the end product can still be pretty darned good and that's ok too. Thanks!

  4. Okay I just have to ask - the mirror above the headboard or above the bed?  you weren't exactly clear but either way it made me giggle so thanks!

  5. melissa*320 sycamore1/8/14, 1:28 PM

    Hi Kate! You can just get the button cover kits at a craft store and cover them yourself. See above for the tip about using a rubber mallet. The final dimensions are 4 ft tall by 64 inches wide and it rests on our box spring. Good luck!

  6. I think it's great! 

  7. I DOES look great.  And you are SO funny!

  8. Hi Melissa,

    We're hoping to build a headboard for our master bedroom later this month, and I'm really overwhelmed by the thought of  doing the tufting. I have no idea on how to cover the buttons -- any thoughts? Even though the pegboard seems like it would be easier...

    And then the size of the headboard. What are the final dimensions of your headboard? I’m stuck to figure out the ratio of bed to headboard. I
    was thinking that it should extend about 2 1/2 feet above the mattress
    (and then maybe the first foot is hidden by the pillows). But interested
    to see your scale.


  9. LOL Your funny! You're right it will look great when it all comes together. Thanks for the directions and the 'shoulda, coulda, woulda' parts too.

  10. melissa*320 sycamore1/8/14, 5:57 PM

    You are so right. I can't turn it upside down, because the foam only goes about 3/4 of the way down, the rest is flat and behind the mattress. Does that make sense?

  11. melissa*320 sycamore1/8/14, 5:57 PM

    A frame would be a good idea! Although I might mess that up too?? :)

  12. I think it looks beautiful! I would never be able to create something like this, so great job!
    Can't wait for the party! I am STILL getting visitors to my blog from the party last fall, so thank you! :)

  13. I would definitely check out LGN's tutorial on tufted headboards at She tufts first and then attaches the edges. With using staples I would be concerned that the fabric will eventually rip through but looks easier than the traditional sewing!

    1. aww that page is gone! (am using Melissa's technique to tuft a stool for the end of the bed!)

    2. oh pfft missed a couple letters copying and pasting, it IS there.

  14. melissa*320 sycamore1/8/14, 5:58 PM

    I have nailhead trim on a roll! I may just add it...thanks for the suggestion!

  15. melissa*320 sycamore1/8/14, 5:58 PM

    That is a great idea, Abby. It might even things up a bit, huh? Thanks for the thoughts!

  16. melissa*320 sycamore1/8/14, 5:58 PM

    Let's hope?! Thanks, Heather :)

  17. wow, i Love tufted headboards like this one. It's very simple. I would have used a bold color like dark pink or orange, or lime color.

  18. Stephanie@cre8tive1/16/14, 10:28 PM

    Oh darn, I hate when that happens! But I think if you just pull back the fabric that you glued along the top portion you could easily pull that top row of tufting out. Oh wait, you glued the buttons on, darn, maybe the nail heads will work. I cheat my tufts the same way! Great minds think alike! I also glue my buttons on, smart aren"t we?
    I am going to rember the peg board trick you thought of, another great tip.

  19. Not too bad for a first time though! Maybe adding a frame around it would also add to it? I still have to attempt making one myself!

  20. Kristen@fit2feelbetter1/16/14, 10:43 PM

    I think it looks great.  And for under $40?!  You can't beat that.  You know that if you spent more time and more money it is inevitable that someone would get something on that pure white beautiful headboard.  As for the buttons on the top, would it make a difference if you turn it upside down?  Can't wait for your party!

  21. melissa*320 sycamore1/16/14, 10:44 PM


  22. Victoria Smith1/16/14, 10:44 PM

    Always good to know you are not perfect! ;)  I think your headboard looks good! I see what you mean about not starting so close to the top but overall I think you have a good product and  I bet you will like the finished product.

    I laughed at your "genius, gorgeous, tan and skinny" comment cause I thought you were all those things!  Now I'm all disappointed. ;)

  23. Lori Bernstein1/16/14, 10:44 PM

    The price is right and it looks pretty darn good! Kudos to you for sharing the good and the not-so-good and keeping it real for your readers.

  24. melissa*320 sycamore1/16/14, 10:44 PM

    The mirror above the headboard! Can you imagine my husband's face if I attached a mirror to the headboard?? Maybe I should just to see :)

  25. L. I. B. !! That is right up my alley! I am inspired and uplifted that something so 'classy' can be accomplished in an hour with a staple gun and some crap from the garage! I'd never have the patience to cover all those buttons so I'd have used pennies on old burlap or something. Darling! Thanks for tackling it without being too fussy! Faithfully following!

  26. Patty Brenner1/16/14, 10:46 PM

    I just found this through someone's pin (and I plan on pinning it as well :-) )  I have on my summer bucket list to make a tufted headboard for my bedroom - I also have saved up foam sheets (from a discarded mattress of all things, lol) and had originally planned on plywood, but was dreading all the geometry of planning and drilling the holes (and I was a high school math teacher for years!).  You have brilliantly solved my problem, thank you so much!  Now to go waste spend more time cruising pinterest :-)


  27. I think it looks great!  I wouldn't ever attempt such a thing, so you're braver and more ambitious than me:)

  28. I like the idea of staples + hot glue - seems soooo much easier than "real" tufting. Can't wait to see the room come together!!

  29. I think it looks good! The only thing I would add is one more "tuft" in the third row from the top at the very right of the picture - so that the new tuft lines up with the one on the end of the top row.  And maybe two tufts on the left ends of the 2nd and 4th rows (if that makes sense?) The top row wouldn't look so close to the edge if it was intentionally like that on the sides too!  Just my thoughts, but it does look great and so impressive on a budget!

  30. Love it - not too bad, not too bad at all.  If you think you started too close to the top though - couldn't you just flip it around and the bottom be the top and the top be the bottom?  Just a thought.

  31. I think it looks pretty darn good!!

  32. melissa*320 sycamore1/16/14, 10:47 PM

    I was concerned about it ripping too, but I pulled on those staples and pulled and they would not come out. So, I'm hoping it stays? We'll see... Thanks for the tips and the link :)

  33. I think you did a great job, Melissa! Genius to use pegboard, too. I'm sure it would make tufting with sewn buttons so much easier.

    Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions

  34. Dawn @ Creativecaincabin1/16/14, 10:48 PM

    That is the coolest idea:)  I would have never thought of that.  Thanks for the tip!!

  35. keepingbusyjt.com1/16/14, 11:04 PM

    Thank you. Great tutorial and über easy. My kind of DIY. I'm with you, next time I'll take my time and be skinny and brilliant and ..... Ok back to the projects. Thanks for sharing!

  36. I think it looks fine for a first time. It's functional and with pillows it willbe mostly hidden. If it really bothers you I would remove the top buttons and add some nailhead trim around the whole thing. You could get it at Jo-Ann's with a 40% coupon off as well and it would finish it off nicely.

  37. I think it looks great. My daughter made me a padded headboard. She used plywood for the backing, hot glued on the foam, placed the material and stapled it onto the underside. The plywood went down to the floor and was screwed onto the end of the bed frame. She also had some trimming and used a heavy brocade material. It turned out nice


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