Your headboard doesn’t have to just be a functional piece. It can also bring color and a sense of style to your bedroom. The one rule is that there are no rules. You can keep it simple or make it a statement piece. The choice is yours. If you feel that you should limit yourself to the standard type, think again. You’ll have a lot more to choose from than your grandmother’s hand-me-down set.

A headboard can take on new roles as a focal point or unifying element. It can do so much more than just keep your pillows in place. It can contribute the mood of the room to give it the look that you want your bedroom to have. Let’s explore some of the possibilities for making it a stand-out feature.

Design and Types

Manufacturer headboards come in a variety of styles, materials, finishes, designs, and upholstery. The combination of these features will create the look you want to get for your bedroom. You may be surprised to learn how many choices you have when selecting one, starting with the basic types.

You’ll find them either as standalone pieces or part of a set with a footboard. Having both lends a sense of completeness to a bedroom, but it certainly isn’t a requirement. Adding a second one will increase your cost if you’re on a limited budget. Likewise, consider the price that certain features will add to your bottom line. Remember simple doesn’t always mean less expensive.


You’ll see headboards in a wide range of styles to complement your existing furnishings. You can pick one that will fit without drawing attention to itself or go for one that will be the crowning piece of furniture. Your room’s style will influence your choice of other features. Keep that in mind when browsing for the perfect addition.


The base material is a major factor in the cost. Solid wood headboards, for example, look stunning but at a price. But it’s not the only one available. If you have your heart set on it, you can find less costly choices too. Other options include:

  • Manufactured Wood
  • Wicker/Rattan
  • Metal
  • Acrylic
  • Plastic

Your choice of material just scratches the surface for the final product. That’s where you need to think about the room’s style and its color scheme. Acrylic will work nicely in a contemporary style bedroom but would be out of place in a space in the Victorian look. Keep in mind the entire mood as you go through the different features.


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The next thing to consider is the finish for adding that splash of color. You don’t have to have a monochromatic room. You can branch out by choosing a pleasing harmony like complementary or analogous to add interest to your bedroom. And don’t forget the impact that design elements like contrast can bring to a space.

It’s important to consider the effect of color in a room, especially one where you sleep. White, for example, brings feelings of spaciousness and cleanliness which are desirable for this space. Red, on the other hand, evokes intensity and energy, things you don’t want to encourage when you’re trying to fall asleep.

Colors associated with relaxation and a calming environment include:

  • Gray
  • Green
  • Blue
  • Brown

Use these associations to your advantage with your headboard to create the ideal setting for the tranquility that encourages rest.


These factors also come into play with the overall design. You can let the style drive your choice. You might consider making it functional with added features like storage or shelves. After all, you’ll spend a lot of time in your bedroom with some estimates putting it at one-third of your life. The bottom line is that comfort is your main goal even down to your choice of a headboard.


But your choices don’t end there. Now it’s time to think about upholstery. Some options like vinyl offer a good fit for a style like modern. You’ll find a lot of variety. Other possibilities include:

  • Cotton
  • Linen
  • Leather
  • Jute
  • Microfiber
  • Faux Leather
  • Canvas

Upholstery adds texture to create a pleasant sleeping environment. It can bring a touch of class to the room with something luxurious like velvet. Think about how an upholstered headboard can enhance the mood of the room.

Other Options

Finally, you’ll see other features that can also complement the room’s style. A tufted headboard, for example, could act as the finishing touch for a traditional or contemporary style bedroom. Likewise, a headboard with a distressed finish is an excellent choice for a cottage or country style room. You’ll find headboards what attach to the bed frame as well as wall mounted options.

Work with the Principles of Design

You’ll find it helpful to consider the impact of the principles of design when choosing furniture for your bedroom. They’ll bring a sense of cohesiveness to the room’s overall style. They include:

  • Harmony
  • Hierarchy
  • Balance
  • Proportion
  • Emphasis
  • Contrast and Similarity

Using these design elements means the difference between a room that you’ll enjoy and one with a mood that doesn’t feel as inviting. They apply even if your bedroom leans more toward the eclectic or shabby chic style. And everything in the room including your headboard contributes to the overall effect.

You can use these principles to highlight certain features in the room with thoughtful placement or choices. For example, a black headboard in an all-white room makes a bold statement that brings a classic feel to a room. Likewise, one covered in suede will add texture and a welcome natural feeling to the space.

Keep in mind the elements of harmony and balance to create an inviting room. Things that contrast too much with the mood of the room foster feelings of discontent which is the last thing you want for a bedroom.

DIY Project

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Another thing you might consider is taking on the task yourself with a DIY headboard. It can work with any style to bring a personalized touch to a room. Remember what we said about no rules? Let your imagination be your guide to a unique piece. It doesn’t have to follow the cookie-cutter formula.

Turning Something Old Into Something New

An ideal way to carry it off is to repurpose something else into a headboard. For example, a fireplace mantel does have to stay at the hearth. It can stand in nicely while adding a bit of dramatic flair. Check out flea markets and antique malls to see what you can find. Other reclaimed treasures you can use include:

  • Old Doors
  • Salvaged Barnwood
  • Room Divider
  • Area Rug
  • Picket Fence

The possibilities are endless. With a bit of sanding and a fresh coat of paint, you can create a signature piece. It’s a great option for a farm or rustic style room. Repurposing something old adds character to a space in a way that a new piece can’t touch.

Make Your Own Furniture

Another thing you might consider is building it yourself from scratch using materials from pallets or old crates. You can add other features like shelves to make it a more functional piece. It opens up the opportunities to customize it. You put in framed pictures or display collections of favorite mementos. It will strike the perfect note for an eclectic style bedroom.

Thinking Outside of the Box

Your headboard does have to have the traditional form. The sky is the limit when it comes to creating something one-of-a-kind. For example, you can create your own set of upholstered, vertical panels with a fabric that fits in with the room’s color scheme. Or you can mix it up and have a mosaic of different shaped panels instead. You can even use throw pillow arranged in an attractive pattern

For something really eye-catching, you can hang a canopy behind and over the bed using drapery or curtains. You can achieve a similar effect using reclaimed wood that you can extend over the bed on the ceiling. Looking for something less permanent? You can opt to use peel and stick panels that resemble it.

An accent wall can provide a worthy substitute and bring new life to a bedroom. It’s a good option if you want to add a pattern to the room without all the hassles of wallpapering the entire space. You could also use backsplash to get the same look.

Another possibility is to create a focal point with framed artwork that matches the theme of your bedroom. You can make it a collage by adding textural pieces too. For example, you could hang seascape paintings and include a piece of coral or a few sand dollars to complete the nautical look.

You don’t have to settle for a plain old headboard. You can ramp things up with a piece that will add character to a room in a way that captures your signature style. After all, the goal is to make your bedroom a comfortable place that will help you relax and enjoy a good night’s sleep. A pleasing atmosphere is the best way to start.

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