How to Build a Headboard Bench

When you are in the business of buying furniture and other items to recreate sometimes you can find yourself with too much stuff! The easy projects seem to always find their way to the front of the line while some of the other random cool pieces get pushed back to the back of the shop. So I have been on a mission to go through my shop and finish all of the projects that I have accumulated before I buy anything else.

So this next project is the product of my cleaning out. I got this beautiful headboard at an auction. It was just the headboard, nothing else. But it was so pretty I could not pass it up. The footboard that I paired it with was from a completely different bed. I think someone must have gave me that because I don’t remember buying just a footboard. This is what happens when you have random piles of stuff, you forget where it came from.

The logical thing to do with these beauties was to build a bench. After I pulled them out of my pile, I started by cutting the footboard in half to create the sides. I just measured it to the depth that I needed the seat to be. Usually around 18”- 20” deep.

Once I had them cut down I used my clamps to hold them in place. That gave me the opportunity to make sure everything looked ok before I attached them.

To attach the sides I simply screwed them in from the back.

Once I had my sides attached I put my seat boards on just to see how I liked the height. The average seat height on a bench is anywhere from 16”-18”. This one fell just at 16” but it just felt a little short when I did the sit test. You can see in the picture that I had plenty of help while testing it out.

In order to raise the seat height just a little I added a 1×2 on the sides where my seat boards will lay. This boosted it just enough.

The next thing I needed to do was add a front support. I used a simple 2×4. I used my Kreig Jig to add pocket holes so it was easier to attach and I did not have to worry about filling holes. I did go ahead and add stain to my 2×4 so that way when I painted it the paint would have the same color as the rest of the project.

All that was left to do was add in some 2×2 pieces that I could use to attach the seat to the frame. I used my Kreig Jig to attach these pieces too. This way I would not have to worry about screwing down through the top of the seat boards. If you are thinking about adding another tool to your collection, I would really consider the Kreig Jig. You will be shocked at how often this little tool saves you so much time.

And that’s it! I gave it a nice base coat of turquoise then went over the entire piece with a dark glaze to really give it that aged look. I left the boards that I used for the seat stained. That gave it a nice contrast. As usual I like to finish off all of my pieces with Polycrylic. It really makes the piece easy to clean. I love a beautiful piece of painted furniture but if I can’t take a magic eraser to it when the kids color on it, it’s no good to me! So everything must be scrubbable (not even sure this is a word)!

I hope you enjoyed the build. If you have tackled a similar project please post your pictures in the comments. This is another example of turning pieces that would have otherwise been discarded into a beautiful, functional piece of furniture.

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