How to Build a Raised-Panel Headboard

Add layers of lumber and decorative trim to a plywood base to create the illusion of one solid headboard. Follow these step-by-step instructions.

Materials and Tools:

3/4" birch plywood
tin ceiling tiles
1x2, 1x3, 1x6, 1x8 lumber
wood glue
finish nails
decorative trim
crown molding
miter saw
220-grit sandpaper
wood filler
construction adhesive
tack cloth or rags
paint or stain


Note: The featured queen-size headboard is 62 inches wide by 54 inches high.

1. Cut the foundation piece for the headboard out of birch plywood and lay it flat on a work surface. Use wood glue and finish nails to attach two 1x3s perpendicular to each other to each side, creating fake legs.

2. Attach a 1x6 flat along the top of the headboard. Decide the position of each tile and trace around them. Secure a piece of 1x3 along the bottom to frame the tiles. Secure 1x2s for the vertical portions of the tile frames.

3. Use construction adhesive to hold the tiles in place, and then attach decorative trim with mitered corners around each to hide the edges.

4. Stand the headboard up and attach a 1x8 to the top using screws, leaving enough revealed to secure crown molding underneath it (wrap it around the two sides as well).

5. Sand the entire piece and remove the dust with a tack cloth or damp rags. Paint or stain the piece as desired and let dry.

Headboards are an easy way to custom-create a new look for your bedroom.

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