A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Build a Headboard Bench


Repurposing old furniture into new and functional pieces not only sparks creativity but also contributes to sustainable living. One delightful DIY project that combines aesthetics and utility is crafting a “Headboard Bench.” Transforming an old headboard into a charming bench is a rewarding venture that allows you to add a personalized touch to your living space while breathing new life into pre-loved furniture.

How to Build a Headboard Bench
Image Source: RuggyDIY

Materials Needed

Before delving into the step-by-step process, gather the following materials:

  1. Old Headboard:
  • Choose a headboard with a design that appeals to you. Whether it’s a vintage find, a family heirloom, or a thrift store discovery, the possibilities are endless.
  1. Wood for Seat and Frame:
  • Select sturdy wood for the bench seat and frame. Plywood or solid wood boards work well for the seat, while 2x4s are ideal for the frame.
  1. Saw:
  • A saw will be necessary to cut the wood to the desired dimensions. A circular saw or a jigsaw is suitable for this project.
  1. Sander:
  • Smooth out any rough edges on the headboard and the wood pieces with a sander.
  1. Wood Screws:
  • Use wood screws to assemble the frame securely.
  1. Drill:
  • A drill is essential for creating pilot holes and attaching the wood pieces.
  1. Wood Glue:
  • Apply wood glue along with the screws for added strength in the joints.
  1. Paint or Stain:
  • Choose a paint or stain that complements your style and existing décor.
  1. Foam and Fabric for Cushion (Optional):
  • If you want to add a cushion to the bench, get foam and fabric of your choice.

Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Prepare the Headboard

  1. Inspect and Clean:
  • Examine the headboard for any damage or loose parts. Clean it thoroughly to prepare it for the transformation.
  1. Remove Unwanted Elements:
  • If the headboard has unnecessary elements like finials or ornamental pieces that hinder the bench’s design, carefully remove them using a saw or screwdriver.

Step 2: Measure and Cut the Wood

  1. Measure the Headboard:
  • Determine the width of the headboard, as this will be the width of your bench.
  1. Cut the Seat:
  • Using the measurements, cut the plywood or solid wood boards to create the bench seat. If you prefer a wider seat, consider adding extra width.
  1. Cut the Frame:
  • Cut 2x4s to create the frame. The length of the frame should match the width of the headboard, and the width should match the depth of the bench seat.

Step 3: Assemble the Frame

  1. Create the Rectangle:
  • Assemble the cut 2x4s to form a rectangular frame. Use wood screws and wood glue to secure the corners.
  1. Attach the Seat:
  • Place the cut plywood or solid wood boards on top of the frame. Secure them with wood screws, ensuring a snug fit.

Step 4: Attach the Headboard

  1. Center the Headboard:
  • Position the headboard at the back of the bench seat, ensuring it is centered.
  1. Secure the Headboard:
  • Attach the headboard to the frame using wood screws. Make sure it is stable and well-aligned.

Step 5: Sand and Finish

  1. Smooth Edges:
  • Use a sander to smooth any rough edges on both the headboard and the bench.
  1. Apply Paint or Stain:
  • Choose a paint or stain color that suits your style. Apply it evenly, allowing it to dry completely between coats.

Step 6: Add Optional Cushion

  1. Cut Foam:
  • If you desire a cushioned seat, cut foam to match the dimensions of the bench seat.
  1. Wrap in Fabric:
  • Cover the foam with fabric, securing it to the bench with a staple gun. Ensure the fabric is taut for a neat finish.

Tips and Ideas

  1. Personalize with Pillows:
  • Enhance the bench’s comfort and aesthetics by adding throw pillows that complement your décor.
  1. Weatherproofing:
  • If the bench is intended for outdoor use, consider using weather-resistant paint or sealant to protect it from the elements.
  1. Distressing for a Vintage Look:
  • If you prefer a vintage or distressed appearance, sand the edges and corners of the bench after painting for a worn-in charm.
  1. Coordinate with Surroundings:
  • Choose colors and finishes that coordinate with the surroundings, ensuring the bench seamlessly integrates into your space.


Building a headboard bench is not just a DIY project; it’s an expression of creativity and a celebration of sustainability. By repurposing an old headboard, you not only contribute to a greener lifestyle but also craft a unique piece of furniture that tells a story.

As you embark on this DIY journey, relish the process of transforming a discarded headboard into a functional and aesthetically pleasing bench. With a touch of craftsmanship and a splash of paint, you can create a charming seat that adds character to your home – a true testament to the beauty of repurposed furniture.

Also read: How Often To Paint House Exterior

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