Saturday, August 4, 2012

Home Decor: DIY Headboard Tutorial

For the book lover in you, this tutorial for a simple headboard is perfect. Not only does it involve pages from (preferably) really old books, but you also get to play with paper-mache. 

What You Need:

  • A large rectangle of cardboard, (typically the long side should be the width of your bed.)
  • A large bowl (glass or metal work great, I'd advise against plastic)
  • Book pages
  • Flour and water
To make the paste, you need 1 parts flour to 4-5 parts water. You want the glue to be kind of thick and soupy. To whisk out all lumps, but don't make it too runny. Remember, you can always add more flour/water until you get it to the consistency that you want. 

Lay out your cardboard. I recommend using a tarp or plastic underneath so as not to make a mess of your floor. 

Choose your paper source. For this project of mine, I used the pages from a very old Philosophy book. Be creative though! You can use illustrations from books for this too, newspaper clippings, magazine photos, and lots more. As long as it's paper and you coat it well enough, it should do the trick! 

Now it's time to get messy. Use your hands to spread the glue mixture on sections of the cardboard. Lay down your pagers and then smear more glue over top to fully coat each piece of paper. You want them to be kind of soggy and sticking to the cardboard (and each other!). Make sure to overlap the first layer so you don't leave any cardboard showing. 

If you have any specific pages you want to appear on the top, save them for last and place them over the pages you've already glued down, smearing another coat over top these new pages. Then, set it someplace with lots of air flow to dry. A place where it won't be disturbed is best.

And you're done!

Other Tips:
  • You don't HAVE to use paper. Strips of cloth work well for this too. 
  • You can draw, write, or paint over the paper once it's dry. 
  • Feel free to decorate it with over accessories: flowers, pins, bows, etc.


  1. So funny, I just finished putting away my papier-maché! I covered an old body foam mannequin with the music sheets from Doctor Who. For the glue I actually used 1 part white clue 2 parts water, it gives it a glossy finish. ^.^

  2. Ooh I'll have to remember that formula then. I wanted kind of an old and vintage finish so I just used the flour/water mixture. But yeah....good tip!