My latest dilemma was trying to design a headboard for a client who had a bed in a room in which a window took up part of the space where the headboard should be. Because of space restrictions, the bed was pushed up against the wall and into a corner. Yet my client, whose impeccable style clearly was retro, needed some type of headboard to complete this room. The Solution: Wrap-around headboard In this case, the bed was pushed up against a wall without windows or other barriers, so I decided to make the headboard wrap around the bed. I designed a headboard that would be fabricated in two parts, then assembled on the job site.
The headboard was designed to occupy approximately 75 to 80 percent of the head of the bed and an equal proportion of the side. For this queen-size bed, I used the following dimensions:
Head: 36 inches high by 48 inches wide
Side: 36 inches high by 60 inches wide
Before You Start:
Make a good paper template of each section of headboard. You will have to measure from the top of the mattress to the floor to allow for the headboard's legs. These templates will become the pattern for cutting the wood.
Tape these templates onto the wall (using drafting tape so that the walls won't be damaged) so that you and the client can determine whether the headboard dimensions are correct.
If you are going to cut your own headboard, you will need a full sheet of plywood. Or, if you use a workroom, you will need to send them the template with a rendering of the headboard so that they can offer an accurate quote.
Fabric required: four yards for base fabric, and four yards for rolled edges and welt.
Fabricate each section as you normally would, treating each section as an individual headboard with the following exception: End the rolled edge as shown.
You may choose to cover the headboard without a rolled edge, or embellished with buttons or trims.
Connect the two-piece headboard using three three-inch L-brackets. Mount on the outside, positioning one bracket approximately six inches from the top of the headboard, another approximately 36 inches from the top and the third about six inches from the floor.
After you have your freestanding headboard, you need to mount it to the bed frame at the corner leg. The side of the headboard will not be attached, but will be supported by the wall.
Pam Damour is an award-winning designer and author known for her willingness to share her fabricating secrets with competitors and consumers. She travels extensively lecturing at both consumer and trade shows and has produced two step-by-step videotapes. Damour also offers consulting and in-house training to the trade.