How to Make a Wooden Headboard Frame

What You'll Need
5 pieces 2x6 (for a queen sized bed)
3 pieces 2x4
Sanding tool or paper
Nails or screws
Screwdriver or drill
Measuring tape
Carriage bolts, lock washers, hex nuts

Making a wooden headboard frame is not overly difficult. The tricky part is deciding what type of headboard you want to make, as there are many different options. This process will take some time as you will have to wait for stains to dry, so think of this as a weekend project or something to work on a little bit each day.

Step 1:  Measure and Cut the Wood

Get the wood and measure it according to the type of bed you have, as the measurement will different for a twin, queen or king sized bed. A headboard requires several pieces of shorter wood, though you can also cut up a longer piece according to your measurement. For a queen sized bed you will need five pieces of 2x6 lumber that is 77 inches long, and three pieces of 2x4 lumber that is 42 inches long.

Step 2: Sand and Stain

Sand all the edges and make sure the pieces are clean of debris and dust. Stain the wood to the desired color. If you are going to use multiple coats, make sure that the previous coat is completely dry. This can take several days, particularly if the weather is wet. If you want your headboard frame to look old then you can distress the wood using hard objects. Just strike the wood until the desired aging is achieved. If you want your headboard to be glossy, you will need to apply a coat of polyurethane and let this dry completely before you assemble the frame.

Step 3: Assemble the Headboard

Line up the five 2x6 boards face down and then lay the 2x4 boards perpendicular. One board is along the center and two others are about 2 feet away from this middle one on each side. Make sure they hang down so you can attach the headboard to a frame. Use deck screws to attach the boards together. To attach the headboard to the bed frame use carriage bolts, lock washers and hex nuts.

Step 4: A Lighted Headboard

You can also construct a fancier headboard than detailed above as you can create a highlighted or lighted headboard frame. Besides the boards you will need strips of fluorescent lights, wood glue and air compressor and trim if you want to add more decoration.  This type of headboard will go around your existing headboard and appear to light it from within. This is a great way to get more light at the head of the bed.

Step 5: C-Channel Frame around the Current Headboard

The measurements for this will be larger than your current headboard frame, as it will sit about 5 inches away from the existing headboard. The head frame boards are 8 inches deep. For this, cut wood for a batten and C-channel. Everything is then attached together using nails, glue and screws. It is important to reinforce all of the mitered corners. Fasten the light strips along the edge of the C-channel so that they shine light behind the headboard.

Once the light is added to the headboard frame, you can add any decoration you want such as decorative trim, stain, paint or more. You can also fill in any holes and sand the entire thing before finishing it to match your bedroom.