STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE

How to make a fairy light headboard

Interior designer Gordon Whistance takes you through the steps needed to make this beautiful headboard studded with twinkling fairy lights, that's guaranteed to give your bedroom that magical touch! Use white lights to create a relaxed atmosphere in a grown-up boudoir or opt for colourful lights for a child's room.

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How to make a fairy light headboard

You will need...

  • A piece of MDF 3ft sq
  • Fairy lights
  • Tape measure
  • Straight edge
  • Pencil
  • 5 3ft lengths of 2x1 baton
  • Angle brackets
  • Sand paper
  • Paint
  • Paint brushes


  • <b>Step 1: Mark your headboard</b>

    Step 1: Mark your headboard

    Using a tape measure, mark every 10cm across one edge of your headboard. Do this across the length of the board and join up the dots with a pencil and a straight edge. Repeat the process the other way. This will create a grid for you to work to so make sure you are accurate!

  • <b>Step 2: Drill the holes</b>

    Step 2: Drill the holes

    Using a drill with a wood bit the exact size of your fairy lights, drill a hole precisely where each of your lines cross. Do not forget to protect the work surface below the board using a scrap of wood.

  • <b>Step 3: Make the wooden return</b>

    Step 3: Make the wooden return

    Make a U shaped frame from the baton and after making pilot holes, screw them together. Attach the frame to the headboard using angle brackets screwed in at the back.

  • <b>Step 4: Attach the legs</b>

    Step 4: Attach the legs

    The legs should be the height of the matress on the bed 25in or 65cm. However, bed heights do vary so check the measurement before you start. To attach them to the headboard, first drill pilot holes to prevent the wood from splitting and then drill in your screws. Be careful they do not go through the front of the headboard.

  • <b>Step 5: Paint the headboard</b>

    Step 5: Paint the headboard

    Acrylic or water based egg shell is the best paint for the final colour as it has a tough finish, is easy to apply, dries quickly and is almost odour free. Use a mini roller and ensure you do not clog up your drill holes. Finally, carefully push a fairy light through each of the holes. Make sure you read the safety advice on the instructions.