This post would be more aptly named “How to entertain family and friends while attempting to build a bed without the proper tools and time” or maybe “20 household items that can be used in lieu of construction clamps” or even “How to trick your man into DIY-ing on movie night”.
We have had the same bed frame for the past 10 years and I have been wanting to switch it up, but you already knew that because I have painted it twice now trying to get a new look. Paint just wasn’t quite cutting it so when I saw a bed in Pottery Barn that was part upholstered/part wooden bed frame – it got my wheels turning.
In theory this is really a simple project, you know, if you decided to gather the proper tools to do it, or did any research rather than just winging it – but hey that’s what you have me for right? Research done! I can now tell you the best way NOT to do this…but also what worked too.
The first step is easy enough; measure the back portion of your headboard (and your foot board too if you have one, you will need to put one panel on each side) to figure out what size you need the panels. Then head to Lowe’s and get the thinnest/lightest plywood they have cut to fit. The thin light thing will be very important later…trust me!
Next grab your fabric, batting, and staple gun. Attempt to upholster your boards. Realize upholstering such large boards is more a 2 person project and call your amazing mother in law upholstering extraordinaire (I apologize if you don’t have one of these handy, but I’m not sharing mine!). One stapled finger and thankfully no tetanus shot later (hopefully you can avoid this part) you will have your boards done.
I also added this pretty nail head trim to disguise the fact that I had to add to extra pieces of fabric to the end of my board. The fabric was just 1 inch too short (this should have indicated to me right off the bat that this project was not going to go smoothly).
Now here is where the thin and light plywood part comes in handy – after much deliberation about how to attach my upholstered panels I decided to just use liquid nails. That’s right no drilling, no nailing, just good ole glue (would you expect anything less from the laziest DIY-er on the planet?). Pop your panels right on and voila…
Well, yeah no not really. I didn’t think about the whole drying time involved…
I started with the foot board and naively thought if I watched some Dora with my 5 year old we could just lean up against it together (yes I’m not above child labor over here) and in no time it would be stuck…which would have worked if my little girlie didn’t bail on me after 5 minutes to go color.
Now imagine with me if you will, me gathering up anything and everything heavy in my house and trying to prop the panels up. While you are at it, imagine me in my best contortionist act with both hands and feet on the panel trying to hold it up. This was a fail too, apparently I need to hit up yoga class more often.
Finally I resorted to calling my neighbor down the street who has every tool imaginable (why I didn’t start here in the first place one will never know) who indeed showed me he had no less than 300 million different types of clamps. (Thanks Bill and Arlene!!)
By this time the Mr. came home to see liquid nails everywhere, all my makeshift clamps, the real clamps fresh from the neighbors and my children running around like Lord of the Flies…
I think he might have temporarily lost faith in me and my DIY abilities (and possibly my parenting skills!). We got the kids in bed, clamped up the foot board and hooray it was working! Story over, we all sleep happily ever after right?
Well no, then we got to the headboard – the clamps would not fit over the thicker trim of the headboard. So picture this contraption I rigged up – just our box spring on the bed covered in 1 x 4 boards, then my grandmothers chairs on top of the boards, with me and the Mr. sitting in the chairs in our pj’s (the Mr. respectfully requests you not picture the him in his pj’s part) leaning up against the panel for 2 hours waiting for the glue to dry.
I say romantic movie night right? Not so much, but we got it done! It is still standing several weeks later, we have not been concussed in the middle of the night by an upholstered panel falling on our head and most importantly it looks pretty!
So now you are thinking either:
A. Who is this lady and who let her give out DIY advice
B. I can’t wait to try that, so glad I let Kelly make all the mistakes and I will do it the right way
C. Her husband is a Saint
or D. all of the above…
I think we all know the correct answer…
I’m working away on redoing this room so stay tuned for more changes to come! Here’s a little sneak peek –
Don’t forget about the Summer Showcase of Homes I’m participating in this week here are the amazing bloggers that are sharing their homes today – be sure to check them out Atta Girl Says ~ The Happier Homemaker ~ Rain on a Tin Roof ~ Better With Age ~Top This Top That
I’m up Wednesday so stop back and see me :)
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