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DIY Farmhouse Headboards for only $25

April 12, 2017

A few months ago I wanted to revamp Eloise and Henri's room. They had these broken toddler beds that were different colors that I intended to paint to match and then never did. Plus they were getting bigger so I decided to rearrange their room and give them some new twin sized beds.
I priced headboards and bed frames at all the cheapest places I could think of Walmart.com, Overstock.com, CRAIGSLIST! But came up with nothing I liked in my price range. So I decided to just try and make them myself. I found this very simple Ana White Brookstone twin headboard plan and got to work. Each bed took only two hours to assemble once all the wood was pre-cut at Lowe's.
Total cost for headboard wood: only $25 per bed! Buffalo check bedding from IKEA: $40 per bed. Got the metal mattress frames for free off Craigslist. So only $130 total for this project! If I bought the headboards retail it probably would have been $130 for just one headboard.

I didn't take any pictures of the process because you can get all those from the Ana White plan. However I do have  A LOT of advice. Also I included a cut list for double the wood if you are also planning on making two instead of one.

Ana White's plan has a mistake in it I believe. She has listed two 1"x3"x8' strips cut to 38.5". I replaced 2 of the 38" pieces with 41.25". Some of my measurements are different from Ana White's plan. I think its because I used furring strips which are slightly smaller than their advertised size (usually half an inch smaller in width and thickness). If you use better quality wood I would measure to make sure you are having them cut the right size. I found the furring strips to be cheaper at Home Depot but I linked to Lowe's below because in the past Home Depot has charged me for cutting the boards. But if you cut them yourself you could save some money. Here's the price list for furring strips at Home Depot.

CUT LIST FOR TWO HEADBOARDS

-Eight 1"x4"x8' furring strips cut down to 31" for a total of 24 31" -pieces
-Two  1"x4"x8' furring strips cut down to 38" and 30" each for a total of 4 pieces of wood. The 30" pieces will be the wood you use to make the two angled cuts in the front so you will have to cut those to size yourself. I estimated 30" which is more than you'll need.
-Two 1"x4"x8' furring strips cut down to 41.25" each for a total of 4 pieces of wood.
-Two  1"x4"x8' furring strips cut down to two 38" and two 26" and two 30" for a total of six pieces of wood. The 30" pieces will be the wood you use to make the two angled cuts in the front so you will have to cut those to size yourself. I estimated 30" which is more than you'll need.
-Two 1"x4"x8' furring strips cut down to two 41.25" and two 45" for a total of four pieces of wood.
-Two 1"x2"x8' furring strips cut to 47" each for a total of four pieces of wood.
-Two 1"x3"x8' furring strips cut to 47" each for a total of four pieces of wood.
-One 1"x3"x8' furring strip cut to two 44" pieces for a total of two pieces of wood.

I had Lowe's cut all my wood in the store (Except for the mitered front pieces. I cut those angles at home). They didn't even charge me for it. If you do have Lowe's cut the wood for you remember to label their measurements with a pencil on each piece as they cut the wood. That way you don't get home and have to sort and measure all over again. Of course if you have your own chop saw you can just do all the cutting at home to be sure. It's just such a pain in the butt AND we don't have a heated garage so it's FREEZING in my "workshop" and I hate working in the cold. I assembled the headboards in our finished HEATED basement the way I'd put together a piece of IKEA furniture.

I also used the cheapest wood and it still worked well. The cheapest wood is usually referred to as "furring strips". The only catch is that you have to sort through the stacks of wood for straight pieces. And at the Lowe's I went to only about 10% of the pieces were semi-straight so THAT was tedious. But in all I only spent $25 on wood per headboard so for me it was worth it.

They were beyond easy to make because you didn't need to use screws or a kreg jig. Just a brad nailer and wood glue. You can use just regular nails and a hammer too but it's going to be a bit more tedious. If you don't have a brad nailer I DO recommend getting one. This is the one I use and I like it because it uses a lithium battery and not a compressor.

As for the whitewash finish all I did was take regular white latex paint and mix it with water 50/50. I put on two coats and that was it! It's nice because you can still see the wood grain through the paint but you still get that crisp bright white look.

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