You turned a headboard into WHAT?! (Project #23 done)

Last week I shared a list of 24 projects with you that I seriously need to finish. Or else. I’ve put these things off for far too long, and I just need to get.them.done. once and for all.

Monday I showed you my finished Project #10 (pictures for piano room), and today I’m happy to report that I’ve checked another project off the list!

Which project did I tackle next?

Why, it’s Project #23: Finish the King Size Headboard project.


I haven’t been THIS EXCITED about a project in a very long time. It took me several months, but I’m so thrilled to report that this top-secret-project I’ve been hiding up my sleeve turned out better than I could have imagined.

Are you dying to know what on earth I did to this bookshelf headboard?

I turned that bad boy into an extra-long sofa table! squeal!!!


Is it seriously fabulous or what?! I still can’t believe I actually even thought to do this with a headboard.


Let’s just take a minute and back up a little…

The headboard started like this:


I’ve had this headboard (and matching 3- and 6- drawer dressers) for 11 years. The set was my grandparents and I was the fortunate granddaughter that inherited them.

When I was 20, back before I had a clue what I was doing, I received this set and attempted to strip them down and refinish them. They were originally a light cornmeal yellow and were obviously straight from a department store circa 1950.

Here’s a great view of the original color before I attacked it with cherry stain:


I was thrilled to have the bedroom set, but honestly, I have never loved the headboard. (I do adore the dressers though.) I did a terrible job on the refinishing; the color was awful, and the pieces are covered in sanding scratches (I didn’t use a fine enough grit and it shows).


Here’s the entire headboard, not obstructed by my mattress and embarrassingly ugly bedspread.


Like I said, I have never loved this headboard. It’s too short, not substantial enough, and is a magnet for junk while we lay in bed (alarm clocks, books, ponytails from my hair, jewelry, etc.) It was my grandparents though, and I’ve got some sentimental attachment to the set, so I’ve never been able to stomach getting rid of the headboard (even though I hate it).

One day, it just hit me… What if I put the headboard behind the couch to act as a sofa table? I’ve wanted a table behind the couch for a year now, but we need one that is very narrow (check!) and very long to accommodate the long sectional (check!).


I was giddy when I drug it around back and realized it was the perfect size; not the perfect height, but the length and depth were spot-on.

I let it sit behind the couch as-is for at least 3 weeks, maybe longer. Every single person that saw it thought it looked ridiculous (which it totally did). I would explain my vision, and I kid you not, every person but Ben (love him!) thought I was crazy and that it would be hideous.

How come after 31 years of being crafty and doing projects all the time, PLUS having a popular home blog, do my friends and family still have zero faith in my vision? It’s insulting, honestly.

Finally, I’d had enough justifying to every person that came to my home, and I tackled the headboard-turned-sofa table-project. First, I measured how much shorter I wanted the table to be.


Next, I tipped the table on its side and measured how much of the leg I needed to hack off. I ended up cutting off 9″.


I used a yard stick to draw solid dark lines around the legs of the headboard.


And then I busted out my new awesome DeWalt jig saw that Ben and the kids surprised me with for Mother’s Day.


This was my first time to get to use the jig saw, and I was really excited! It was so easy to use, and I had all my cuts done in a matter of about 10 minutes.


* If you decide to use power tools on your carpet, do so at your own risk.


It made a decent sized dusty mess, but nothing my dyson couldn’t take care of. 🙂 (Because, you know me, I’m way too lazy to drag the table outside where it would be easier to cut.)


I stood it up excited to see what it looked like (and nervous that I may have cut too much off). Oh-meeee-gosh, I lurve it. Lurve it, lurve it, lurve it. Except for one little thing that stuck out like a sore thumb…


Much better! Next I prepped the area by covering the carpet and couch with plastic and propping the table up on some 2×4’s so it would be easier to paint. Prep work is no fun, but it has to be done! I gave it a good once-over with a sanding block, then wiped it down with some TSP.

headboard_sofa_table_16  headboard_sofa_table_17

Then I primed the hell out of it. Literally. I think I gave it like 4 coats. Usually I use zinsser but I had some Sherwin Williams water-based primer in the garage, so I used it and it did a great job.


Yay, finally time to paint! This should be fun. It’s exciting to paint because you can start to see the final results. I chose Haystack by Martha Stewart and I couldn’t wait to get ‘er done.


Three coats later…


If I were painting a table for a baby nursery, I would have been SPOT ON! But, OMG, this yellow looked anything BUT fabulous, and I even gave myself two full days of staring at it to try to will myself to like it. Not happening.

So I hoped that maybe if I added some white accents it would magically look better…

Ya, that might be the ugliest thing I’ve seen this year… This vision of mine is getting totally de-railed very quickly. I need to redeem myself or all my friends and family will tell me “I told you so!”


Getting desperate, I painted all of it white, then I busted out my trusty Slate by Restoration Hardware… (night picture, I’m sorry)


The grey/white combo is definitely better, but those “wings” on the side just look silly… So I painted them white too.


Ahhh, finally. It finally looks dare I say it? … Good?!


Just try really hard to ignore the massive piles of crap in my living room. I tried to push them all out of the way. 🙂 Kids…


And now, I will bombard you with every angle of the table that I could manage to snap a picture of.






And that, my friends, is the story of how I turned an ugly, outdated, book-shelf style headboard into the most fabulous sofa table that was ever created.


The End.


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  1. stunning! i love it!

  2. Wow that’s really fabulous! Great job;. 🙂

  3. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!!!!!!!!!! Awesome job!

  4. Definitely love the white! How wonderful that that special piece of furniture can be used and loved everyday now!

  5. I think it looks great! I love it white! Way to repurpose your headboard!!

  6. I absolutely love your idea! I think it looks great! It looks like it would be great behind a loveseat too! We have some wierd shaped rooms in this house we’re in and it would probably help define where one room ends and another begins 🙂

  7. Brilliant!! It’s beautiful. I am laughing at the fact that you paint inside your house and cut inside your house, too! You are crazy! But, it looks super!

    Becky B.
    Organizing Made Fun

  8. I have to admit – this is one of my favorite things you’ve done to our house so far. It looks soooo good!

  9. Wow, you did an amazing job! It looks great. You are so creative!

  10. It looks fantastic! Great job! I would never have thought to do that.

  11. That is so freaking awesome! I just made hubby come and look at it and he’s super impressed too. Way to go! I love it!

  12. great job!! I can’t believe you are going to tackle all those projects! sounds like a lot of work. can’t wait to see what you do.

  13. I am very impressed. I love doing this type of repurposing.

  14. A-MAHHHHHHHHHHH-ZING! I love it!!! Way to go!

  15. I just love that. You are so clever to think outside the box like that!

  16. Ohhh now THAT is recycling at it’s best girl! Bravo! Now you’ve got me thinking about the old headboard I have similar to that with the sliding doors on little cubbies. You are goddess of inspiration my dear!

  17. It looks wonderful!! So creative! What a great idea for a narrow space. Definitely prefer the white over the yellow.

  18. Well so cool!!!! Wow! Fabulous and I love seeing pics of the process!!
    Well done girl!!

  19. Squeal is right. What a fabulous transformation. Love repurpose projects like this. Well done!

  20. Love the accent color with the white. It turned out awesome!

  21. Wooooweeeeee!!!!! This is gorgeous!!! Gotta love it when others don’t see the vision! We had faith in you all along! Good to know you have your hubby and other DIYers to tell you how amazingly fabulous you are!!

    xoxo, Mallory

  22. This is an amazing transformation!!! I never would have thought to do it and it’s PERFECT!!! You should be very, very proud of yourself.

    Thanks for the inspiration…once again 🙂

  23. Looks fantastic. Great eye for finding something and thinking outside the box for its next use!

  24. Wow, very cool. Great Job.

  25. What a great idea! I love your creativity in repurposing that headboard.

  26. Such a fantastic idea! Great transformation!

  27. Love this! Something like that just might fit behind my sofa!

  28. Great post ! it is perfect as a sofa table and accents your fire place and the large frame above. Great Job !!!

  29. Fabuloso!! Really!

  30. Wow, looks great! Such a good idea for a sentimental piece of furniture! Always a pleasure to read!