DIY Vintage Door Headboard. In just a few hours, you can turn an old door into a statement piece headboard with reading lights!
DIY Vintage Door Headboard
2019 Update: I posted this DIY over four years ago in 2015. Since then we have moved from Alabama to Germany to Charleston, SC. It survived the overseas move and I still love it just as much!
We’re still using the headboard, but our style has evolved a ton. Below is how this headboard looks in our current home in Charleston.
Keep scrolling for the original step-by-step tutorial on turning an old door into a statement piece headboard.
Our recent move was the perfect time to toss our super old mattress and upgrade to a King-sized bed (which has been on my wish list for years)!
We got a great deal on a foam mattress on Overstock and we even had a bed frame that converts from a Queen to King we were able to use.
But I felt like it looked sloppy without a headboard. This is how it looked before…
Planning the Headboard
We didn’t want to spend a ton of money and every King sized headboard we found was $400+. So I just kind of sat on the whole idea for a few days and then decided I wanted to turn a door into a headboard.
I also wanted reading lamps mounted to the headboard. We measured the bed to know what size door we’d need and then went “door-hunting” locally at an awesome store called Prattville Pickers (with a tape measure in tow!).
Since shopping with 3 kids in antique and “pickers” type stores is less than fun, my husband texted me pictures of the doors he found. I turned down a bunch and then he sent this one and I knew it was the one!
Door cost: $60.
Creating the Headboard
We sanded the door down a bit, cleaned it up, and distressed the white side even more.
I really wanted to keep the doorknob but it would have meant keeping the bed too far away from the wall, so we removed the knob but left the plate.
My husband measured the bed frame to determine how tall to make the legs and how far apart to space them.
Then he secured the legs to the door (using 2×6 lumber) and used heavy duty screws and bolts to attach the headboard to the bed frame.
Lumber & Supply Cost: Around $20
The door is really heavy and solid so it took two of us to install.
Converting the Sconces to Plug-Ins Lamps
The lamps were trickier than the headboard because lighting tends to be expensive, especially the vintage-style barn lamps. Most of the ones I found were $300..each! It’s also hard to find plug-in style sconces.
So we ventured over to Lowe’s and found these Allen + Roth Barn Light Sconces for just under $35 each!
We talked to one of the Lowe’s employees about converting it ourselves and learned it was super easy (and inexpensive) to do.
To convert the sconces to plug-in lamps you’ll need:
- Wire cutters
- Wire connectors
- Electrical Tape
- Needle-Nose Pliers
- (2) Base Switch Cords (The base switch cords have the on/off button on the cord so you can turn your light off/on without having to plug/un-plug)
- Two vintage-style light bulbs (optional)
Installing the Reading Lights
I was going to have my husband write up this part of the tutorial on how to do the actual light conversion but I Googled it and found this excellent post with a ton of pictures on The Happy Housie. This is the exact method he used.
Then he drilled a hole (1″) into the bed corners to pull the wire through so we could mount the lights.
And then it turned out the plug wouldn’t quite fit through the hole so he just disconnected the wires, pulled the wires through, and then re-connected them to the scone wires as in the method above.
Finally, we screwed the lamps into the headboard, added the shades (included in the box but it was not put together), and put in the pretty bulbs.
And now we can easily use the button on the cord to turn on our reading lamps. I think the bedroom looks so much more complete now!
Total time investment: 2-3 hours
Total Cost: Under $150
Dawn Nicole at Home
Check out more of our Charleston home and more with the links below!