Before & After: Headboard Re-Do Before and After Headboard Re-Do

Well, the shape of it was cute, the finish/color? not so much! It was very sturdy and exactly the shape and size I was looking for in the guest bedroom however, so here’s what I did for this headboard re-do and I’m thrilled with the results…

When we first bought our 100 year old house it had 6 bedrooms… well sort of, but not really. The one on the main level we use for the home office. The one on the third level, which was originally the maid’s room, we use as the craft/sewing room. That leaves 4 on the second level, but we took one and turned it into the second bathroom… That brings us down to three bedrooms.

If you’ve been following this blog at all, you know that we, (my husband and I) are empty-nesters with frequent visits and stays from mostly our grandchildren, but once in a while either my parents or our adult kids. So all that to say we needed at least one spare queen bed for sleepovers, right?

Of the 3 bedrooms, one is our master bedroom, the other is set up with a lofted bed for older grandchildren sleepovers, so the final bedroom is the one to be designated the ‘guest’ room with the queen bed.

I saw the cutest headboard on Ballard Designs with a high arch and tall posts on each side, and it had a carved bird sitting on the one side of the arch part. So cute, but way to expensive for me to justify buying for the guest room that primarily gets used for my 5 year old grandson’s naps a couple times a week. I knew I could find something similar, and after an exhaustive search every day, continually checking for new listings, for several weeks, (whew!) I found this on Craigslist: headboard before

The height of the posts are about 7′ tall… you can see how much taller they are compared to the door behind it, (door was another Craigslist find, but didn’t work out, so I just re-sold it right back on Craigslist ๐Ÿ˜‰ )ย  Anyway, the headboard is tall, solid wood and pretty heavy. The color was less than desirable… but that for sure isn’t a deterrent to me. As long as the purchase price is right, then I can totally justify spending a little time and money to paint it a color more suitable for my liking.

So with a quick coat of primer, and 2 coats of gray, this is the headboard now: headboard after primer and paint

The gray I used is from the same gallon of paint I used for the built-in buffet in the dining room. I love that color… I’ve used it in a couple of places through our 100 year old house now… it just seems to look beautiful with everything!

The headboard did not have any holes or brackets or anything to mount the bedframe to, so I just simply pre-drilled some holes, headboard marked for holes

and screwed the bedframe into the headboard posts: headboard attached

In this guest room, the woodwork was refinished at some point, way before we bought the house. This is the only room that doesn’t have painted woodwork, and I decided to keep it that way. Someone worked really hard to strip and refinish it. I’ve done that refinishing work in my life many, many times… so I appreciate the hard work and effort. Plus, it looks really pretty in this room! (a whole house of it would be too much for me, but one room is just perfect!)

Yep, all you young gals out there painting over wood furniture… one day you’ll be stripping it back off… I’ve lived through the 70’s when everyone was stripping off the colors they painted on grandma’s pieces in the 50’s… And you know what? I still paint over some pieces too… (but some I leave wood too) ๐Ÿ˜‰ย  Like this bed, the wood was nothing spectacular at all… the piece was not old and valuable and it looks so much better painted.

Funny story:ย  Many years ago, I shiver to think how many it was, but when my kids were quite young, I was working on a furniture stripping project for hire. It was winter, but some friends of ours had a heated barn/shop that I could work in, I just need to let them know when I was coming so he’d leave the door unlocked for me to get in. Well this particular day that I was supposed to go work at the barn, I woke up sick… (dang migraines!) I was too sick to talk on the phone, so my young son, Ben, who was around 5 or 6 had to call our friends for me, to let them know I wouldn’t be coming after all. The next day or so when I called my friend to ask them to leave the barn unlocked, for me to work on the refinishing project, they just laughed and laughed… “What’s so funny?” I inquired. Then they explained, when Ben called, he talked to the wife and asked her to give her husband a message, ‘Tell him my mom won’t be out to strip today.” End of call. ๐Ÿ˜‰ headboard before and after all done

This room is a lovely juxtaposition of warm and cool color tones. The wood floor and dark wood trim are very warm, so the cool light gray walls and gray headboard contrast that nicely. For furnishings, I have a mix of wood and painted pieces. This dark wood round cupboard table next to the bed in the picture is a piece I’ve had for quite a while. It’s been used in various rooms… and didn’t look like that when I bought it new. I added the burlap to the inside panels. Click here to see how I added the burlap to the table and what it looked like new.

So the moral of the story? I am convinced that if you are patient enough, and work at looking, you can find the perfect piece of furniture in a used condition for pennies on the dollar… as long as you’re willing to work a little to achieve the finished look you’re going for. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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This post is linked up at the following other sites:

DIY Dreamer

Cozy Little House

A Stroll Thru Life

Yesterday on Tuesday

Home Stories A to Z

The Scoop

Inspire me Monday

Between Naps on the Porch

Coastal Charm

DIY Showoff

Skip to my Lou

Inspiration Monday

Chic on a Shoestring

A Tray of Bliss

Friday Favorites

Inspiration Gallery

French Country Cottage

Handmade Hangout

The Charm of Home

DIY like a Boss

Vintage Charm

Posed Perfection

Dream. Create. Inspire

DIY by Design

Savvy Southern Style



Reader Interactions


  1. Mary-The Boondocks Blog says

    That was a funny story Liz! See how our kids can get us into trouble without meaning to. The bed looks beautiful in that color. But I was intrigued by what you said that in the 50’s it was all the rage to paint furniture and then later they stripped it. I remember in the 70’s it was very in to have all of that pine and blond wood. I guess everything does go in cycles. Also in the 80’s grey was very much in, but it was a cold grey not the warm tones that we use today. If you have a chance I’d love for you to stop by our new Sweet Inspiration link party that runs from Friday till Tuesday.

  2. brenda says

    really like this color. I think this is the color I want my kitchen cabinets I believe I will have the bottom this color and the really light shade on the sample card for the top.

  3. Nellie says

    Hi Liz,
    I just clicked on the icon where you left the comment and it took me to Lizdecoratingtips, I think it was, and
    that is evidently a google type sight. But when I went directly to this web site, I had no problems. Love this
    bed yall redid it is gorgeous……….
    Hope that expains the situation.
    Have a great weekend,
    Blessings, Nellie

    • Liz says

      Thanks for the information Nellie… I’ll have to check into that. I only use Google plus to be able to comment on blogger blogs, I didn’t realize it was using that for my website.

  4. Barbara says

    I love the bed. I think the detail in the raised edge stands out much better with the gray color than it did originally. It looks fantastic! Your guests will be very lucky people to stay with you and sleep in this beauty!

  5. Donnamae says

    Oh…looks lovely! Especially the contrast of the headboard and the night stands. I can appreciate the work that went into stripping the paint off those baseboards. I had to laugh at your stripping story! I stripped the old milk paint off of a 1940’s oak kitchen set…it was my parent’s. Took me weeks, because it was in every nook and cranny. I finally took it to a refinisher….he dipped it, and still had to pick the paint out with a dentist’s tool. It was gorgeous though, amd well worth the effort! Sometime you will have to show us the other half of the room! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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