DIY Herringbone Headboard

diy herringbone headboard

Today’s DIY herringbone headboard project definitely ranks as one of my very favorite projects ever. You saw a peek of it in this post where I used it as the backdrop for some photos of Hattie. We started it back in October (which I was surprised to learn when I was looking back through the photos – time really does fly), and finished it just before Hattie was born.

diy herringbone headboard

Isn’t it pretty? I really love it. A lot. It’s exactly what I had pictured in my head.

diy herringbone headboard

Joel drew up the plans for the herringbone pattern, making sure it would all be symmetrical, and we worked together to put the headboard together. I even did the nail-gunning, which is out of my normal comfort zone. I usually leave the power tools (other than the sander) to Joel, but with him cutting boards while I nailed them in place, it went together pretty quickly. As you can see, we attached the pattern to a plywood backing that Joel attached the legs onto.

diy herringbone headboard

Joel trimmed the edges flat and added a border around the headboard, and then we brought it inside for a few months. The boards were damp when we bought them, and we wanted to make sure the cedar was really dry before it was stained and painted.

diy herringbone headboard

Once I could convince Joel to haul it back out to the garage for me, I stained the headboard dark walnut so that when it was distressed the dark would show through.

diy herringbone headboard

Next I covered the stain with white paint. I kind of liked the look after one coat, but decided to keep going. It took about 6 coats in all with our paint gun, I think, to get the coverage I wanted.

diy herringbone headboarddiy herringbone headboard

To give it an aged look, we distressed it by hand with sandpaper, bringing the dark stain back through the white.

diy herringbone headboard

The headboard was finished off with several coats of satin Polyacrylic to protect it.

diy herringbone headboard

I had been looking for some bedside tables for quite some time, and was excited to find these little gems at Ikea one day recently. The lamps are also from Ikea, which I bought a couple of years ago.

diy herringbone headboard

The bedspread is from Target, which I bought mostly because it was on clearance for $30, regular $100. I thought it would just be an extra for when we needed one, and didn’t realize how much I would actually love it until I put it on my bed! Now it’s my favorite.

diy herringbone headboard

I couldn’t have been happier when we finally got the headboard back into our bedroom, and even happier that we got it done before Hattie came along.

diy herringbone headboarddiy herringbone headboardUpdate: My husband drew up the plans for the headboard in SketchUp, and here is a screenshot that shows measurements for placing the herringbone pattern correctly. This is for a king sized bed. If you make a DIY herringbone headboard of your own, I’d love to see how it turns out!

DIY Herringbone Headboard


  1. I love this so much!

  2. This is incredible Abby! I love how it looks in your bedroom. I think it’s so fun to work on projects with my husband, too!

  3. Can I just copy your bedroom? thanks. ;) I love it all! Especially that headboard. I need it in my life.

  4. I love everything about your room! and I want your bedspread!

  5. I love it! Great job! You have such great taste. Simple and clean. So nice. Congrats on Hattie by the way, she is a DOLL!

  6. This headboard is really impressive and beautiful.

  7. Great job with the headboard. love it!!

  8. This is GORGEOUS! I love that it has a rustic feel with a modern twist! Well done!

  9. Thanks for linking up to Take-A-Look Tuesday over at Sugar Bee Crafts – your awesome project was featured yesterday!!

  10. I LOVE this! The chippy white paint, the pattern and well…I just love everything about it! Thanks so much for sharing at The Makers! Pinned :)

  11. Hi Abby, I just wanted to let you know that this is one of the party features this week at The Makers! I hope you will stop by and join us again today or later this week :)

    Have a beautiful day!

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  14. Cheyenne says:

    What size boards did you use? 1X2s? What size bed do you have? Im trying to draw up the plans for a full size bed

  15. Can you post the plans he drew up for this?

  16. Love this headboard! Do you happen to have the dimensions of the finished product?

  17. Taylor V says:

    how long are the 1×4’s cut for the main pieces?

    • sewmuchado says:

      That’s a good question ;). If I can dig up any more of my husband’s plans, I’ll update the post with more measurements.

  18. Whitney says:

    How much did the wood all cost!?

    • Whitney says:

      And what size of wood did you use to frame it in with!?

    • sewmuchado says:

      I unfortunately can’t remember what the wood cost, but it wasn’t too expensive, especially compared to what we would’ve spent on a pre-made bedframe.

  19. Thanks so much for the inspiration. We used your post as a basis for making our own Bedhead and I can’t be happier with the results. We went with a lightly lime washed pine look.

  20. Looks great! How long are the cut (full) pieces you used to make the pattern?

  21. Can you use pallet wood too?

    • sewmuchado says:

      You definitely could, you’d just have to make sure it is free from any harmful chemicals that pallets sometimes harbor, and adjust your measurements to fit your board sizes!

  22. Heather Perry says:

    Can you tell me if all of the words were put together flush with each other Or was there a slight space between the boards? I can’t tell from the pictures if there is a space or if that is just darker stain.

    • sewmuchado says:

      Hi Heather! The boards were originally placed tightly together, but spaced out as the wood lost it’s moisture. :)


  1. […] from Sew Much Ado shared her DIY Herringbone Headboard and I love how it turned out, especially with the bit of distressed white paint. So […]

  2. […] from Sew Much Ado shared her DIY Herringbone Headboard and I love how it turned out, especially with the bit of distressed white paint. So […]

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