Friday, February 05, 2010
I’ve been saving this post to press into service as a splash of color at the greyest point of winter. As my family, friends, and long time followers know, I am a Solar Powered creature of Sun and Light. Although I enjoy a good old fashioned snowstorm as much as the next guy, SE Virginia’s Storm of the Season has dissolved into a wet mush of filthy ice and rotting vegetation, and we are, by all accounts, on the verge of getting pelted with about 12 hours of icy rain, so it’s safe to say I’m done.
For me, one of the biggest things winter has working against its limited palette. Color—not unlike myself—is an entity thoroughly dependent on light. Winter, by definition, is a Low Light entity, which means, by default, that the season isn’t going to impress anyone with a Prismatic Showcase.
I may still have a few followers out there who remember a little teaser post from way back in November when I promised to show you what I did with the fabric pictured above. Since I never got the post together before the calendar told us that we didn’t have time for projects that didn’t involve turkey, trees, or toys, I decided to hold onto it as a possible antidote for winter blahs.
I don’t know how it is at your house, but at mine, the master bedroom has traditionally taken all the awards for dutifully serving as the most underdeveloped room of the house. Even as a kid, I remember all of the hasty, pre-company clean ups consisting of gathering all the clutter and stuffing it into my parent’s bedroom—a habit I have tried time and again to keep from seeping into my own housekeeping rituals with varying success.
Inspired by my friend, Lori, who has all the good ideas, I decided to confront the dismal scene below by crafting a custom fabric headboard:
The beauty of this project is its complete adaptability. All you need to transform the sleeping area of your choice is a piece of plywood cut to the specs of your specific bed, cot, or mattress, pillow forms or cut foam, a bit of fixative, a staple gun, and enough upholstery cloth to cover same. Since my accommodations are king-sized, I decided to divide the space into thirds and display three coordinating colors. This decision proved fortuitous as I discovered that my local home improvement store carried pre-cut plywood in the exact measurements I needed to cover my space.
Patience was another thing that worked in my favor. I planned the project a full three weeks before executing, as I was holding out in hopes that the cloth I selected at 15+ dollars per yard would go on sale. In this, I also was lucky in that the very day I decided that I simply could not wait any more, the entire store went on deep discount. Although my original plan called for cut foam—that I also could have obtained at deep discount—I got lucky for the third time when I happened to find 3 pillow forms that just happened to be—you guessed it—the exact size to mount on my three cut boards.
Luck does not necessarily have to be on your side. Lori’s project was for a full-sized bed, and she found that a standard, uncut piece of plywood fit her needs perfectly. She also said that most home improvement stores will cut the board for free.
Once I got all the supplies home, I was less than two hours away from a completed headboard. I used brush on adhesive to fix the bottom end of my cloth and the pillow form to the plywood. I glued about 6-8 inches of cloth (top side down!) straight to the plywood,added some staples for added stability, and adhered the pillow form on top of the cloth and onto the plywood. The glue I used dried pretty quickly, so it was not long before I was able to wrap the rest of my cloth around the pillow form and fix the rest in place with a staple gun.
Originally, I planned to bolt the three finished panels to my bed frame, but once I set them into place, I realized that they were not going anywhere, so I declared the project done. Lori chose the option of fixing her single covered panel to the wall behind her bed, creating a completely different effect. She used cut foam for her panel, so her creation was flatter and sported cleaner lines.
I used my scraps to cover an old cork board to create a custom memory board for the wall near my bed. I also decided to add some shelves and fixtures in a white-and-silver theme. The end result? You get to be some of the first guests I’ve actually invited into my room: