Keven and I have the whole third floor/attic of our old house as a master-suite. But our bed is crammed into a tiny room on the back of that third floor. When Keven moved in he set up his light maple sleigh style bed. It’s nice, but it’s BIG.


Admittedly, this photo does not make the bed look BAD, the project wasn’t NECESSARY, per se…but that’s how I roll.

Anyhow, one weekend, inspired by some Pinterest browsing, I determined I would remove the old bed, replace it with a simple bed frame and then craft a custom plywood headboard that would require a significantly smaller footprint.

First step was to swing by the ’ol Furniture Barn on University Ave in St. Paul to find a bed frame. A mere $50, 8.5×11” carbon copy receipt and no-return waiver later, and we were on our way to a whole new bed!


My plan was simple. I thought if I could find a cool enough piece of hardwood plywood that has an interesting grain, then I’d pretty much just slap a big rectangle of that behind my bed.

I quickly made a plan.



I designed a simple rectangle that included 2 cutouts for the outlets as well as two built in shelves.

After the Furniture Barn, we headed to the lumber yard. I first tried trusty Menards but the variety of hardwood plywood was lacking. I wanted something with some character and was hoping to find a Hickory piece. We ended up at Siwek Lumber where I could literally flip through piece after piece of plywood until I found my new headboard. I ended up choosing a birch piece that has a unique twist of dark and light elements.




I also picked out a super great 1×6 chunk of walnut to use for shelves.

The great part about going to a lumber yard and doing some planning is that because of their pro level saws they were able to cut about 6 inches off the long side. Thus sparing me trying to cut a straight line with the circular saw when I got home.

Next, I mapped out where the outlet holes would need to go and cut those out using my jig saw. This meant first drilling a hole with a large drill bit and then inserting the jigsaw blade into the hole and continuing around the perimeter.


For the shelves, I had planned for them to go past the edge of the plywood by 4”, this allowed the shelves to be centered over the night stands I already had in the room.

After the basic assembly was complete, the rest of my time was spent sanding and finishing the wood. I chose a matte polyurethane. I applied two coats but in retrospect I could really use another light sanding and third coat. I also “installed” the headboard by simply resting it on the floor behind our bed. But think now it would behoove me to actually screw the frame into the plywood so it’s affixed to the bed itself rather than just leaning behind. Well, good winter project.



The final step was to install the two small light sconces I had on top of the plywood. The only challenge with this was drilling the correct size hole in the boards so that I could feed the plug through the hole and behind the new headboard.  Like? We do. Very satisfying.







Leave a Reply