It’s amazing what can be created in a relatively short span of time with your own two hands. Little more than a week ago, I had some blue sheets that were the ugly duckling in my guest bedroom. They just didn’t belong, and I was kicking myself over the purchase, wishing that I had thought better of them before I’d given them their first wash and generally ruined their chance of being returned. Good bargain or not, I do like for my house to like nice — especially for my out-of-town guests! My little munchkin turns 1 this week, and that definitely means a house full of guests, and it put my little blue sheets on a serious time table for somehow finding a way to fit in. Here’s how we came to our finished work. (I consider it to be art, but I’m a little biased).
Where I left off, I had a nice headboard sitting in my kitchen, just waiting for a little bit of attention. I really am blessed with a very nice neighbor who came over to help me manhandle the headboard so that I could do my end of the deal: the upholstering. If you don’t know your neighbors, call them over for a glass of wine or coffee ahead of time. You never know when some storm will hit, literally or figuratively, and you’ll be glad that you have a friendly face looking out for you right nearby. But I digress…
I had briefly mentioned before that I was going to purchase a fabric shower curtain to do my upholstering. I have a sewing machine, and I actually use it from time to time, but I was concerned that I would have a piece of fabric that wouldn’t be quite the right size, and I didn’t want to have a seam running through the middle of my finished piece. Also, being on a tight schedule (nothing quite like your in-laws coming to light a fire under you and your project for some serious motivation!), I didn’t want to have to fiddle with all of the time involved for sewing the pieces together. The only tool I really wanted to use is my handy dandy staple gun. Thus, I knew that something along the lines of either a shower curtain or a bed sheet would be within my budget and give me plenty of fabric to cover the front of my 62″x39″ headboard and still leave plenty for wrapping around and tacking onto the back. I ended up with the following shower curtain:
As you can see, it’s listed as 100% polyester — you clearly do not want a cheap plastic shower curtain for this type of job, and you want something that will hold up well not only as part of the headboard, but won’t tear too easily when it has a staple shoved into it. I got this beauty at Bed Bath & Beyond on sale and with a coupon (oh, how I love my never-ending pile of BBB coupons!) for $24. I like how it’s more than one type of fabric. It will make my headboard interesting without the added work of having to sew different fabric types. This is one of the benefits of working with a shower curtain rather than a sheet. I decided that I would have a bit of the blue trim show at the top so that it gives a bit of a border to the overall design. For the batting, I found a great big piece of high loft quilter’s batting. It’s 110″ square, so I decided I would overlap it about 2 1/2 times. This makes the headboard a little more cushy and provides added thickness at the top (versus down behind the mattress and springs where no one will notice).
I wrapped the batting around the front first and stapled it down. On the corners, do as my neighbor kept telling me, and “wrap it like a present.” It ensures that you have tighter corners that won’t bunch up too much with all of the extra fabric/material. I was also careful to not have fabric where my husband would later have to screw on the legs. We outlined where they would go so that I would better know where not to staple. In any case, with the batting on, it was time for the shower curtain. Staple, staple, staple, and here you have it!
I chose to not cut the fabric in the back and to use the extra length to cover some of the wood to prevent it from rubbing too much on the walls. With a little batting of my eyelashes when my husband came home, I convinced him that we needed to finish the project that night. I love that man. So, up the stairs it went. We waited until we were upstairs to drill on the legs to make it a little easier to navigate the stairwell without pieces sticking out.
Here you see it laying on top of the bed with the legs affixed. You can also see how I brought the material up in the back to cover some of the wood. We were at the homestretch! It may have seemed like an easy sprint, but we found one more hurdle… We discovered that some of the holes on the legs were not quite lining up with the metal frame. It happens. So out came the drill and the vacuum. My husband added some new holes, and I vacuumed my heart out getting the pieces of wood off the carpet. Finally, we were able to attach the headboard to the frame with some nuts and bolts, and ta-daaaaa!
My ugly duckling became a beautiful swan! We are so excited with how it turned out. It can be kind of hard to compare the before with the after since I made several other changes. I flipped the comforter to the solid gold side, swapped in some ivory pillow shams and dust ruffle, and added in this cute knotted pillow I found on clearance to go with our nautical theme. Overall, we’re so happy with how it turned out, and we can’t wait for our guests to enjoy their new suite!