Happy Thursday! Can you see the weekend in your sights yet? I can’t believe we are already in the last month of June. I think I say this every year, but where have these months gone? Next week is the 4th of July & my 12th wedding anniversary. Craziness. Back to the point of this post. I made a headboard yesterday! It is a style that I have seen on Pinterest for years and have always wanted to do myself. I bought some 8 ft cedar boards last month when they were less expensive than they normally are. They were peach & golden & gorgeous. I knew I would figure out what to do with them eventually, four wood accent walls are enough for one house. Right?
If you are working with wood, make sure that it is completely dry before you start on your project. Sometimes it rains in transit or if the wood is outside the store where you got it from. That way you won’t have to worry about it drying and warping later on. If the wood wasn’t completely dry on this headboard, it might dry and shrink down the line and gaps would appear between the boards. I’ve learned the hard way with my impatience. Like I said, I have had these boards since last month so I knew that they were completely dry.
I went and bought a 4ft x 8ft piece plywood that was 3/8 of an inch thick. It was $17 and some change. There was a slight warp in it but it didn’t have the heft of the thicker pieces. I knew that when the headboard was finished it would shore up and there would be no issue.
Cedar Boards – I used 12 of my 8ft boards
Water Based Polycrylic
Finishing Nail Gun
6-ish hours. Not including dry time.
It is HOT here in Austin, it was 97 degrees inside my garage so my brain wasn’t at full speed for parts of the build
$70. I needed new poly $17 – Plywood $17 – 12 boards that were around $3 = $36
I decided on a making a queen sized headboard because they are easier to sell. I didn’t use my table saw because it wouldn’t handle the cut off. I measured the plywood at 62 inches. A queen sized mattress is 60 inches but I wanted there to be a little play on either side. My husband bought a chalk reel a few years ago and it’s so much easier than getting a long enough straight edge when you are doing bigger jobs. You put your mark on either side of the board and stretch the line out and make sure it is lined up with your marks. Pull it tight and then bring the middle of the line up and release it, snapping the chalk down. We usually do it twice to make sure the line is clearly visible. This way you have a direct line for your circular saw.
I made another line with the chalk reel down the middle of my plywood so I could have a clear center mark to work off of. I made the cuts for my first two boards and put them into place. They are the most important and need to be as exact as possible so you will be able to have symmetry for the rest of the pieces.
I finished the rest of the pieces for the triangle. Lining up both sides before gluing and nailing them into place.
Lots of glue! I didn’t want to go overboard on the nails, even though they are finishing nails I wasn’t going to use wood filler.
See the nails are barely visible.
I finished each side above the triangle. I was able to complete both sides in half the time of the triangle.
Ta-Da! I sanded this before I started on the border. This way I won’t have to fight the edges and I get a smooth surface.
Next up was ripping four boards 1” thick so I could wrap the outside of the headboard.
I made the side pieces longer so that it would be a solid piece when you look at it from the side.
I ripped the front pieces at 2 ½” to give it a nice border.
I cut the corners at a 45 as well because it would look off from the style using a straight cut.
Now to finish sanding and apply my first coat of poly. I chose a water base because it is quick drying even in humidity, and it doesn’t mess with the color of the wood. It is in my opinion a true clear coat.
I momentarily got nervous about how dark the wood looked, but it was 10pm by the time I got started. It’s so pretty!
It just enhances the beauty.
Here it is this morning after the first coat was completely dry. It lightened up a lot.
I’m so happy with how it turned out. You don’t always need to buy expensive wood to make killer looking furniture. Just look for what appeals to you. The extra sanding is worth it in the end. Here’s my little Vanna White helping me show off the finished product. Thanks for reading!