Pretty Headboard Decorating Ideas


Add a headboard to your bedroom decor and you'll instantly kick up the style of any bed. As a bonus, headboards also make fab focal points. Here are some of our favorite headboard designs.

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Bold Contrast

What Goes With

A headboard is an opportunity to go big. Select a design that stands out from the rest of the elements in your room. Here, a crisp white headboard pops against midnight blue walls. And don't think the details are inconsequential—where would this headboard be without its oversize nailhead trim? Small additions like this are easy and inexpensive ways to dress up fabric headboards. You can even continue the look onto the trim of the slipper chair or the edges of the bedside table.

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Print Mix

Pattern Play

Let a pretty headboard set the style for your bedroom and you'll be on your way to decorating success. A fabric-covered headboard can help you make decisions about color, theme, and other furnishings in the space. In this bedroom, a blue-and-white toile headboard inspired the wall color. The patterns on the bedding are more graphic, allowing the delicate toile pattern to flourish even more. Using the same fabric on the bed skirt creates visual continuity and establishes the dominance of the pattern within the bedroom's design.

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Don't Fret

art and headboards

Headboard decorating ideas tend to demand the attention of the room. Instead, keep the look light with a fretwork headboard. The geometric design is suited to modern spaces and a white finish is the perfect accompaniment to colorful accessories. An understated headboard such as this allows for bold artwork to be hung above the bed without worrying about competing styles.

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Why Your Bedroom Needs a Headboard

If you think your mattress is fine sitting up against the wall by itself, think again. There are tons of design and functional-related benefits to installing a headboard. Plus, most headboards you can make either partially or entirely on your own. Watch and see what a headboard can do to improve your bedroom.

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Showstopping Headboard

Different shades of gray on the ceiling, trim, and walls create visual interest in this bedroom.

A beautiful shape, a gorgeous material, and unique details are a sure-to-win formula for a headboard. This one in a nubby chocolate brown fabric gracefully stair-steps symmetrically and is accented by cording. If you're investing in a headboard, choose one in a pretty neutral that has both a great shape and extra details. It will withstand changes in your decor and will pair well with new throw pillows or a new wall color. If a new headboard isn't in your budget, consider headboard covers, which slide over the existing frame and bring a brand new look.

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Matched Up

Decorating Gallery

If you find a fabric you love, why not use it twice? Here, a modern damask silhouette dresses up both the window shade and the headboard. With so many headboard styles and designs, it's best to choose one that works with the rest of your bedroom decor. After this gray and white fabric headboard was installed, the homeowner repeated the colors in the floor, lamp, pillows, and throw blanket. Pops of yellow and green make it a colorful escape.

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Two for One

Retro Revival House Tour

When it comes to headboard styles, iron headboards are a luxury to most, as they are commonly found in expensive antique shops and specialty stores. Luckily, there is a trick to getting the look without putting a large dent in your budget. Here, a pair of wicker headboards become fit for a bigger bed thanks to some clear fishing line, which secures the pieces together. Rich navy blue paint gives the vintage pieces current appeal and mimics the designs of an intricate iron headboard.

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Mixed Materials


Get the best of both worlds with a wood headboard that sports an ample upholstered panel. This headboard has traditional posts on both sides, along with fluted trim around the linen upholstered panel, which contributes a casual feeling to a beachside cottage bedroom. The fabric breaks up the white walls from the white bed frame, adding another layer of color to the pile of pillows. Elsewhere in the room, the taupe fabric on the headboard is repeated in the window coverings and throw blanket.

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For the Kiddos


Headboards aren't just for grown-up beds—they're an opportunity to add playful charm into a kid's bedroom, too. Here, matching double bed headboards in a red-and-orange ikat pattern pop against neutral walls. The pattern and simple headboard design will withstand the test of time. Now they are paired with kid-friendly stripes and polka dots, but they could easily be paired with more sophisticated patterns down the road.

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Sleek Design

Bedroom Color Schemes

Simplicity does the trick in this modern bedroom. Espresso-stained wood frames a taupe upholstered panel to craft a headboard that's understated, but not boring. When you have a basic headboard design like this, you have the freedom to go bold with our bedding. the rich color of the wood bed frame sets a good base for a bright red comforter and patterned pillows. A rug matching the fabric headboard ties the room together for a cohesive look.

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Headboard Plus


While a headboard can be a showstopper on its own, adding something a little extra can take it to the next level. Here, plaid fabric elegantly drapes down from above the bed, surrounding the headboard with tailored panache. To add even more drama, a metal crown tops the fabric to frame the head of the bed in the most regal way.

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Industrial Edge

Headboard, bedroom, lighting, ceiling fan

There's something about wooden headboards that give a room an undeniable warmth. Here, mixing a steel frame with handsome knotty boards yields a headboard ripe with industrial edge. Gray bedding blends with the metal frame and provides cool contrast to the warm wood finish. If you're making this frame yourself, don't feel limited by the height of the headboard. Build it tall for an even more dramatic look that could double as an accent wall.

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Vintage Charmer


You can find headboard styles to match any design aesthetic, including modern, eclectic, feminine, vintage, and beyond. Mimicking the look of paneling, this charming headboard suits a cottage-style bedroom. This paneled look is commonly found in white or other neutral colors. To give it the wood headboard makeover it needed, these homeowners painting it an unconventional color. The olive green color is earthy and soothing, while the gentle curve of the headboard design adds feminine grace. When a room makeover takes place in the future, it will be easy to repaint the surface for a brand new look.

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DIY Headboard

A fabric headboard can really make a bedroom shine. However, a good one can take up the majority of your bedroom makeover budget. Save on money and get the exact look you want by taking this project into your own hands. See how easy it is to make your own upholstered headboard with our step-by-step video!

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Graceful Shape


DIY smarts are the driving force behind this fabric headboard's stylish looks. After purchasing a 5x8-foot piece of medium-density fiberboard, the homeowners drew the headboard shape—tracing a large, round clock to outline the top—then cut the shape out with a jigsaw. They affixed a same-size piece of 2-inch upholstery foam and added batting. When the perfect fabric was nowhere to be found, a duvet cover proved to be an ideal substitute for the covering.

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Headboard Geometry


In an ethereal or calming room, choose a headboard with minimal visual weight to maintain the simplicity of the design. The geometric lattice construction of this headboard grounds the airy grays and whites in the bedroom without being visually disruptive. A similar pattern, turned on a diagonal, splashes across throw pillows on the bed for a unified look. The black curtain rod and dark flooring make the whole room work as one for a truly calming bedroom.

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Selected Pattern

teal room

If an all-over pattern is too busy for your tastes, consider a pattern-blocking approach. Look for a fabric headboard that only has pattern in select spots. This headboard features wide stripes of solid blue fabric alternating with stripes of a pretty ikat pattern. If you're making a DIY headboard, sew together strips of solid and patterned fabrics to get the same effect. The break in pattern allows for other elements in the room to share the attention, such as the brightly-colored rug.

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New Heights

upholstered headboard in bedroom
Neimen Home Master Suite, Upstairs - Traditional Home Show House, Napa, CA

Keep proportion and room size in mind when choosing a headboard. A room with tall ceilings can handle a tall headboard, while a room with slanted ceilings makes an average-sized headboard look larger than normal. As seen here, this navy-and-white upholstered headboard adds scale to a small double bed. However, a too-tall headboard would dwarf the rest of the room or even run into the ceiling. Wall-mounted light fixtures flank the sides of the bed, matching the headboard height for a symmetrical look.

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Rock Solid

upholstered headboard in bedroom

A solid-color headboard can be just as dynamic as a patterned one, especially when paired with a pretty wallpaper. Consider wallpapering the wall behind your bed to turn the bed into a focal point, which will make a showstopping headboard the star of the room. If your headboard has a wood finish, match the stain to the other wood elements in your room, such as nightstands or chairs. If you choose a fabric headboard, match the color to the accented hue in your wallpaper design.

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Functional and Practical

upholstered headboard in bedroom

If you want the function of a headboard, but want a more subdued look, keep the shape of the headboard simple. A headboard the same color as the wall will also help the feature to blend in. Here, the headboard matching the off-white walls but has a little more sheen to it so the frame stands out enough to be noticed. Elsewhere in the room, warmer colors bring this elegant space to life.

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Nailed It


Nailhead trim is a popular detail on headboards and is usually applied just around the edges. The inexpensive material is an easy way to update an old headboard. This design uses nailhead to both outline the piece's border and to fashion a quatrefoil design in the center. Recreate the look by sketching a design on an upholstered headboard and adding the nailheads yourself. You can repeat the nailhead look by applying trim to a slipper chair or to the edges of a side table in the room.

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Graphic Design

blue bedroom

Overscale black-and-white patterns pack a punch on their own, but when set against an electric-hue wall, the combination is wow-worthy. In this bedroom, a large-scale hybrid damask-paisley print is paired with a vibrant blue wall. Not sure you can commit to a room done entirely in such a standout color? Use the hue on just the wall behind your bed, and paint the other walls a lighter version of the same color.

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Headboard Pattern Play


Complete your pattern mix with an upholstered headboard. Evaluate the other patterns in your bedroom and determine what scale of pattern might be missing. In this luxe glam bedroom, the mix needed more medium-scale prints. The sheets and pillows are small-scale and artwork on the walls bears large-scale prints. A cheetah print on the headboard bridges the gap between large and small and gives the room a final touch of pizazz.

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Creative Cutouts

Cutout white headboard, blue walls

All-wood headboards work great in some rooms, but in others, they can be visually heavy. Keep a headboard visually light by opting for an airy design, rather than a solid fabrication. Here, a white headboard provides the perfect contrast to turquoise walls, and the background makes the geometric design pop. The geometric theme continues in the pillows, artwork, and bright orange rug.

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Curtain Case


Here's one you've never heard before. Consider using a curtain panel as a headboard. It takes the room to new heights by extending the eye upward and adds a jolt of pattern to a blank wall. Simply install a curtain rod on the wall above your bed and hang a curtain from it, using decorating hooks for extra panache. To prevent the curtain from folding and getting stuck between the bed and the wall, cut the fabric so it sits just above the mattress surface. Pillows will cover the gap so it has the illusion of reach all the way down to the ground.

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Pick a Print

upholstered headboard in bedroom

With a plain bedspread and neutral wall color, the headboard can be a perfect place to add a print. Pick fabric that blends in with the wall tone and bedspread for an elegant look. Or for a bolder statement, try a bright contrasting color. The large print in the fabric here breaks up a serene, monochromatic taupe palette. Once the headboard is installed, be brave and go for large patterns in an area rug or upholster a matching side chair in the reading nook.

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Daybed Decoration

Child's Room Design

Upgrade a dull daybed to the status of a beautiful focal point with a fabric-covered headboard. The headboard here brings attention to the comfortable seating area—one that may have gone unnoticed if it weren't for the contrasting teal and red prints. The printed fabric matches the colors of the pillows, creating the perfect retreat for an afternoon daydream. This simple addition kicks the style up a notch in any room.

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Clean White


For a clean, crisp look, white is a good option. This headboard picks up on the bedspread color and frames the bed, but its main purpose is to let the green and magenta accents stand out. When you have a simple color like white, feel free to raise your headboard a few inches. The extra height won't feel too overwhelming when it's dressed in a neutral.

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