You are probably aware that an important element of bedroom design is the headboard on your bed.
What you may not be aware of are best practices for how to choose an upholstered headboard using criteria that include your budget, your style and how you use the room your upholstered headboard will live in. We’ll also share favorite designer sources for upholstered headboards starting with from DIY headboard options and up to favorite trade furniture manufacturers including Lee Industries, Bernhardt, Eastern Accents, Hickory White and Kravet.
Let’s start your discovery process by breaking down the options according to durability and quality. Answer this question: “Do you utilize your sleeping chamber primarily for sleeping, or do you spend a ton of time leaning up against your headboard reading or watching TV?”
Your answer to this question determines if you’ll need a durable solution or an upholstered headboard that can just sit there and look pretty.
For headboards in “sleeping-only” sanctuaries where utilization is primarily for decoration (AKA it doesn’t have to be ultra-durable) you have several options starting with budget-oriented solutions and moving toward more expensive custom options.
How To: Affordable Do It Yourself Solutions
Find a headboard shape that you like (don’t worry about the fabric, you’ll replace that!) at a local consignment store, Craigslist, Ebay, etc. Even a discount furniture website may do the trick.
Procure that headboard along with a few yards of a fun fabric. Remove the old upholstery and make use of your trusty staple gun and voila – you’ve got yourself affordable DIY upholstered headboard!
How To: Affordable Custom Panel Solutions
Here are some examples of different shapes of panel headboards.
These are common headboard panel shapes you can use to commission a custom upholstered headboard.
Commissioning a custom “headboard panel” can be a great solution and one that can actually be priced similar to or below many retail upholstered headboards you may find online or in a catalog.
A headboard panel hangs on the wall above your bed like a picture. It can also have leg supports that fold down and attach to your mattress frame.
This panel solution offers you many options for customization including shape and height, custom upholstery fabrics and even customized trim details such as tufting, welts and nail-heads.
When Durability Matters
Upholstered headboard durability is an important requirement if your bedroom functions as a hang-out space or if you recline against the headboard and upholstery. If you do, an upgrade in construction and materials quality is recommended.
A durable and beautiful solution is to commission a custom full-height headboard with feet that secure to the mattress frame. You can even add upholstered side rails to eliminate the need for a bed skirt if you like! This option is more stable because it’s solid all the way to the floor, and the upholstered side and foot panels give more “connection” points that stabilize the headboard.
Eastern Accents Headboard in a neutral with no trim floral upholstery
The SAME Eastern Accents headboard pictured above but in a blue / white floral with nailhead trim
Durable Options: Choose a Synthetic Upholstery Fabric
Choose an upholstery fabric that is composed of mostly synthetic content so that oils, dirt, hair products and cosmetics aren’t easily absorbed by your upholstered headboard. Over time these can cause stains and discoloration.
Durable Options: Buy Quality American Made Upholstered Headboards
You also have some great options when it comes to ordering an upholstered headboard or bed from “Made In America” furniture companies like Bernhardt, Hickory White, Lee Industries, and Kravet.
These upholstered headboard furniture manufacturers all have “graded-in” fabrics you can choose from and they also have a “customer’s own fabric” option that allows you to use upholstery fabric that you choose to purchase yourself from any source, anywhere and these furniture companies also enable you with the ability to use a mix of wood and upholstery on your headboard.