Project Overview

Creating a timber bedhead is a simple way to rejuvenate your bedroom. This great looking bedhead will add style, colour and texture to your bedroom. And it’s so easy to make you’ll have it done by bedtime.

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Man spraying timber floor
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Belt sander tip

Belt sanders are powerful, effective machines. If you have never used one before, it’s a good idea to practice on an out of the way section of floor first. That way, you will have a feel for how the sander works before you get to the more visible areas.

Step by Step Instructions

1 Cut the wood
2 Mark and measure for the support struts
3 Build the frame
4 Check the frame is square
5 Attach the first tongue and groove board
6 Attach the other boards
7 Mark where the supports are
8 Putty the nail holes
9 Sand the putty
10 Plane the tongue
11 Cut an offcut to 45-degrees
12 Attach the sides of the finishing frame
13 Attach the top of the finishing frame
14 Stain or paint the bedhead
15 Move bedhead into place
  • Step 1. Cut the wood

    The first step is to make the frame for the bedhead. Our bedhead is for a queen size bed, but yours can be any size you choose. To make the job quicker, you can have all of the timber pre-cut at Bunnings. Here’s our cut list for this project:

    Bedhead frame

    • 70mm x 35mm x 1560mm primed pine x 2 (top and bottom)
    • 70mm x 35mm x 1010mm primed pine x 4 (sides and middle supports)

    Outer finishing frame

    • 110mm x 19mm x 1598mm Tasmanian oak or Hardwood x 2  (top and bottom)
    • 110mm x 19mm x 1010mm Tasmanian oak or hardwood x 2 (sides)

    Note: Make sure you have the ends of the finishing frame cut at 45-degree angles.

    Bedhead face

    • 108mm x 19mm x 1560mm Tasmanian oak or hardwood tongue and groove floorboards x 10
  • Step 2. Mark and measure for the support struts

    Take the longer pieces of timber and measure and mark for the supports – two in the centre as bracing and one on each end. Make sure you have three equally spaced bays, ours were at 520mm and at 1040mm. Place both pieces of timber for the frame next to each other, so that the marks are in the same place. Once you have marked where to put your supports on both long pieces of timber, use the 2mm drill bit to pre-drill the holes.

  • Step 3. Build the frame

    Lay out your supports inside the shape of the frame. Drill the 75mm screws to fix the supports to the frame. Use two screws at each corner of the frame to join the rectangular frame together.

  • Step 4. Check the frame is square

    Once you have built the frame, check that it’s square. Measure the opposite diagonals and if they are equal, the frame is square. This is important because if it’s not square at this stage, the boards won’t attach square and parallel. If one diagonal is longer than the other, place the longer diagonal corner against a wall and tap it with the hammer to close down the length.

  • Step 5. Attach the first tongue and groove board

    Take your first board and lay it at the top of the frame with the groove facing outwards. Use a scrap piece of timber to ensure the edges of the board are flush with the top edge of the frame. Then fix the board to the frame with a nail gun. Use a nail at each end so that you can adjust as you go.

  • Step 6. Attach the other boards

    Grab your next board and lay it on the frame. Tap the tongue and groove together, making sure all the edges are flush and line up. Use the nail gun to fix it to the frame at one end and then the other. Repeat the process until all the boards are in place.


  • Step 7. Mark where the supports are

    Once the boards are in place, make a small pencil mark on the centre supports so you know where to fix the tongue and groove boards. Use the nail gun to fix the boards into place on the centre stud supports. Use two nails on each centre stud.

  • Step 8. Putty the nail holes

    For a great looking finish, putty up the boards with a wood filler that matches your timber. We used plastic wood.

  • Step 9. Sand the putty

    Once the putty has dried, use the sander to smooth out the rough edges. We used 80 grit sandpaper for the first sand. We then used a belt sander to make sure all of the boards are level and to create a smooth finish. We used 120 grit sandpaper for this. Clean off the dust.

  • Step 10. Plane the tongue

    As the boards may vary in size, and have a tongue, there will be a little overhang at the top of the bedhead. Clamp the bedhead to your workbench and use a planer to remove the tongue and overhang. To make the job easier, set the plane depth to a minimum and remove a little at a time.

  • Step 11. Cut an offcut to 45-degrees

    An easier way to make sure the joins of the finishing frame are flush, take an offcut and use the drop saw to cut the end at 45-degrees. Clamp this piece of wood to one end of the bedhead so the 45-degree angle is flush with the end and level with the bedhead. This offcut is your guide to help you attach the finishing frame.

  • Step 12. Attach the sides of the finishing frame

    Apply PVA wood glue to the first piece of the finishing frame you need to attach. Clamp it to the side of the bedhead. Use a piece of wood and hammer to tap it flush with the offcut and level with the bedhead. Use the nail gun to secure it to the bedhead. Repeat this to attach the piece of finishing frame on the other side.

  • Step 13. Attach the top of the finishing frame

    Once the sides of the finishing frame are attached, it’s time to attach the top. Apply PVA wood glue to the timber and clamp it to the bedhead. Use the hammer and piece of wood to make sure it’s flush to the corners and level with the bedhead. Secure it to the bedhead frame with the nail gun.

  • Step 14. Stain or paint the bedhead

    Depending on your décor you may want to stain or paint your bedhead. We’ve used a great looking Tasmanian Oak so we’re using Cabot’s Cabothane Clear to stain the timber. To give it a professional look we applied two coats. After applying the first coat we waited for it to dry, lightly sanded it back and then applied the second coat.

  • Step 15. Move bedhead into place

    Job done, and it looks incredible. Move the bedhead into place, dress up the room with your favourite cushions and pillows and enjoy your handiwork!

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