DIY Bed Head

First of all you need a headboard for your bed. I was quite lucky in this respect as, although I was planning to make my own, the boyfriend's brother volunteered (or was volunteered) to make this for me. He's just finished university and has time on his hands so it's OK.

We have a divan type bed, I think, it's just a base and a mattress, but it does have fasteners to attach a headboard. The headboard is, as you can see, a rectangle of MDF the width of the bed (135cm) and about 60cm high. It has two slats running down to attach to the fasteners on the bed base.

I started by covering the head board in a layer of wadding to make it a bit softer, in case I bump my head off it. I am very clumsy, see the falling off the chair while sewing a duvet cover post for proof. (You could also add a layer of foam under the wadding if you want to make it super soft.) 

The piece of wadding needs to be about 10 cm bigger on each side than the headboard, to allow it to reach round the sides and onto the back. I attached the wadding with a handful of upholstery tacks, purchased from my local hardware store. Again, you could use a staple gun if you have one, but I don't.

It's best to start by tacking the wadding in the center of the short sides, pulling it tight, then the centre of the long sides, again pulling it tight. Because, I was adding a second layer on top, I only put a couple of other tacks in, just to hold the wadding in place.

Once the wadding was safely in place, I then covered it with the top layer of fabric. I used a remnant of patterned upholstery fabric I found in Hickeys, again about 10cm bigger all round than the headboard. As with the wadding, its best to start by tacking the middle of the sides first. Is also a good idea not to drive these tacks full in, until you are sure the fabric is stretched tightly enough and to make sure you have not pulled the pattern out of line. To keep the back tidy, and to stop the fabric fraying, I folded over the edges before I tacked them down, and, as far as possible, tucked the wadding underneath.

I had a bit of trouble working around the support struts. I cut a vertical slit in the fabric to about an inch from the head board, in the middle of each support, and folded the edges over so they could be tacked down. I've not made the neatest of jobs, and you can see some of the wadding sticking out, bit it looks OK on the front.
After about half an hour of stretching and tacking, I was all done and the headboard was ready to do back onto the bed.