MANHATTAN NEST HAS MOVED! THIS POST CAN NOW BE VIEWED HERE!
I bow down to your awesomeness. This is seriously amazing — you’ve really outdone yourself. It looks GREAT, Dan. Nice job!
For future reference, you need to know about this place:
(They have awesome customer service, so if you need help or have questions, definitely call them.)
Oh my gosh, that store! I need more projects now.
GAWD, you’re all FAMOUS now!!
that guy at the home depot WAS a total douche baguette
Awesome. This is what we in the soul-crushing corporate cubicle world refer to as “solutions-oriented.”
Good call on the army blanket. Looks great! I may just have to steal it for a headboard I’m trying to make.
You go right ahead. But honestly, if you got rid of the wood headboard/nightstand combo and didn’t send it directly to me, I’ma be pisssssed.
I think she did get rid of it…
You’re blog just keeps getting better. This idea is so good it’s ridiculous and you really pulled it off.
Amazing! Man, everytime I see posts like this it kills me that we don’t have Ikea (or even something similar) here in New Zealand.
Wow, you’re a bit clever you ain’t ya? I did consider the Grimen upholstered bed from Ikea as I’d seen it recovered in a recent edition of living etc. Unfortunately they didn’t do a superking size and as we don’t have wardrobes in our bedroom we wanted the biggest possible bed so me, the hub and bub could watch sat morning cartoons in bed with a brew (cup of tea). You already know what we went for in the end. Anyway the upshot is you are inspiring me no end. As a past uni student I liked a nice room but never went to the lengths you have. My interiors interest has only really come to fruition once I bought my first place some 8 years ago. Good for you for knowing what you love and being prepared to spend time and effort achieving it…I only wish I had 1/2 your energy. Can’t wait to see what else you get up to and just love the witty writings…your army store bit really made me chuckle.
this is AMAZING! You are amazing! I already liked the desk a lot and then you go and pull something more out of your hat like it is nothing. I mean everybody could have one genious idea but two in a short time? Seriously, how do you get so awesome ideas and how do you know how to make an idea in this amazing after?
I’m not sure which I love more: the bed or your completely amusing writing.
I don’t know what I enjoy more…you’re home decorating creativity or your narrative. You are hilarious. Looking forward to your next post!
Love you, love the bed. I can’t believe how many fabric stores we schlepped through and who knew, all we need were army blankets? GREAT writer. I am waiting for that piece you wrote to appear in the New Yorker. Get on it babe… in your spare time, of course.
That is so sweet, I did a bed along time ago wrapping a Modernica case study bed frame in White vinyl…. But I like your alot more… such a great idea. I’m new around here just started a blog yesterday..check it out, I will deff. be following yours
You have single-handedly made me want to rip my bedroom to shreds just so I can upholster a bed like this one. Especially since I already have an itchy wool blanket that I never use that would be perfect for this purpose. Damn, you’re creative!
I totally have a crush on you.
I’m a big fan of your amazing ideas and writting. Please, do write long posts, always!
Daniel (or is it Dan when you get to know someone?),
You do an adorable job with your blog writing. I am older than most blog writers and readers (one more year to my half century) and I SO CAN’T DO DYI.
This kind of stuff just did not happen in my youth and now the hubs makes enough $$ that I don’t have to. OK sounds snotty (I don’t mean to be), but it just happens to be true. (I keep it real too).
As a general rule, I snooze over those posts in my google reader. Mark ‘em read asap.
Very entertaining and a wonderful job!
All the best, Lynn
Oops looks like I can’t even spell do it yourself! DIY!! LOL. Lynn
Well done DK! I have to say that I think I’m to blame for this. If only I hadn’t introduced you to HGTV when I lived with you! You’re doing an amazing job! What happened to the little brace face 13 year old I lived with?!?!?! I’m sure you’re wondering what happened to your “live in big sister you never had”….3 kids later. Miss you and wish you were here. Listening to your dad on a business call right now!
Sky! Who knew all those hours spent communing with Suzanne Whang on House Hunters would really do me a solid later in life? I miss you, hope we can catch up next time I’m in LA. Say hi to the little ones, Ryan, and the dogs for me! Your kidlets are cute to the extreme.
I LOVED this post! I’m not even that into upholstered beds, but I couldn’t stop reading…First that to-die-for desk, and now this. What can’t you do? As a long time Australian reader of D16, I now have one more thing to thank Anna for. Your blog.
Woops, that last comment should read “one more thing to thank Anna for introducing me to…your blog”.
Awesome! With all those staples in it, your bed is probably now magnetic. Best be careful.
Also, the Home Depot woodcutting guys are always jerkwads.
it does look totally beautiful, and your inspiration was awesome. i’m going to get an olive aemy navy blanket for my orange creamsicle guest room.
man, you’re too freaking cool for words. That’s all I”m going to say. Keep up these absolutely mind blowing posts!
Love your blog….always like a good IKEA hack…but not as much as I like a good street find hack! I lived on the upper east side for several years and got all of my lumber for DIY from Century Lumber (or maybe it was Lumber Century?) anyway on 2nd Ave, btwn 96th and 97th. They are nice, will cut to size, and even deliver (though only curbside, and I don’t remember how much it costs) Looking forward to some more posts!
PS You really had me when you removed all of the telephone wires before you painted!
Thanks, I’ll definitely check them out! ALWAYS looking for ways to avoid the big orange HD.
TRAGIC UPDATE: Century Lumber has closed. If you’re in Manhattan, I like Prince Lumber in Meatpacking.
i’m not exactly sure how i came across this blog a few weeks ago, but i just wanted to say it’s (without sounding too cheesy) super inspiring seeing the things you make. i, as a male, have hit the age where i can’t help but stare at tools in store aisles and read a bunch of DIY blogs and whanot and imagine the possibilities. in addition, i haven’t the slightest clue how to make or build anything, but blogs like yours make me want to learn… this has become a daily stop for me, even if it’s not updated daily. so thanks!
Wow, I just reupholstered my FJELLSE bed too and was considering doing the sides and footboard too, but couldn’t find cheap enough fabric to make it worthwhile! I just may do it if I can find an army store by me!!!
Again, another fabulous DIY plus hilarious narrative by Dan! Thanks for this blog. Soon, you may replace apartmenttherapy altogether in my heart because 1. You’re way more funny and 2. I can actually afford to do the stuff you post.
I’m still sleeping on a twin mattress, on top of a bare box spring that’s lying on the floor. My pillow is made of hockey jersey material and my comforter is secretly the dinosaur sheets I had when I was like 4. I don’t understand how we’re even related, but I’m loving this stuff you’re doing to no end. Keep it up!
Your timing is perfect — I have to upholster a west elm platform leg bed because the platform is actually a killer shin attacker. Thank you for taking the time to share your awesomeness!
Unbe-f#*@ing-lievable. (I inserted symbols to protect your child-sized frame.)
You. Are. Hilarious. I can just picture your “skinny-jeaned, child-sized frame” entering an Army Surplus store (even though I have no idea what you look like) and the image makes my soul happy. I actually read this entire post- normally I skip the long ones and just look at the pictures. Good job holding my attention, sir.
Oh and the bed looks f*cking amazing!
Tucking, folding, turning-under?
Did you make a hospital corner at the top of the headboard
or did you cut the excess and fold the ends under?
Similar question about the footboard/rail junction.
Did you double the end of the rail fabric at the vertical junction
at the leg?
Oh gosh, I don’t really know too much about upholstery, I just sort of did what felt right. The top corners of the headboard are hospital corners (if you’re looking at the headboard from the side, the fold is like a 45 degree diagonal line from the top corner on the front of the headboard to about an inch down on the back). The footboard/rails: I stapled the ends of the footboard piece on both SIDES (just past where the legs meet the rails), then cut a slit on both sides of the legs and folded the fabric up– no staples on the legs themselves. Then I stapled the rails at the corner where the rails meet the legs (where you can see the seam in the pictures, the rug is at the end of the bed)– if you’re using a patterned fabric, you’d staple on the backside of the fabric at the corners. At this point, if you pulled the loose end of the fabric so the staples are exposed, it would go away from the footboard, so it’s pulled towards the back, doubling over the staples. So I think the answer to your last question is yes?
I know this sounds awfully confusing and it’s really hard to explain, but I promise it’s pretty simple. And that’s just the way I did it– I’m sure there’s more than one way. You could probably also sew seams on the front corners, but I thought the measuring and accounting for the stretch would be too difficult. I hope any of that made sense or helped you out, if not definitely let me know and I’ll try again!
Could you kindly tell me where you got your comforter?
It’s actually just a blanket and it’s from my Grandma’s house. It’s probably at least ten years old, but your comment inspired me to look into it. Oddly the company still makes them for a pretty penny: http://www.brahmsmount.com/cgi-bin/commerce.cgi?preadd=action&key=11M2
Thanks so much for the legwork. That is a pretty penny, but it’s a pretty blanket…
Hey Dan, great job on the bed, looks great.
I have the same frame and noticed that you used a wood stain on a part of the frame. I was wondering if you had to sand any of the wood to remove any protective coating before you applied the stain. It seems like there is a layer of varnish or something on there already that has to be sanded off first, but its hard to tell.
I did sand very lightly and also used two coats of stain. I’d say it’s a good idea to sand, however the Ikea site does say it’s untreated wood, so it might not matter.
What an awesome project, thank you so much for sharing. I am obsessed with upholstered beds, unfortunately I am having a hard time getting the husband on board with it. I’m sure if I show him this project he will be convinced. And your account of how you put it all together is hilarious, I was laughing out loud at my desk…my co-workers probably think I’ve lost it!
Well I freakin’ love it. Good work! I smiled when reading your plight to get the right fabric, for less than a months rent. I got my dark grey felt/fleece stuff (it’s felt, but is super soft) for $4 a yard, and had a 50% off. JoAnns drives me nuts (due to babies, and people with no shopping cart manners) but it was worth it in the end. My completed headboard is the kid sister to your DIY it seems:
This is amazing. My coworker just sent me your blog and I am going to bookmark it and hug it daily.
I also judge friends by their legs, but they do not know this.
You are a genius! Just to establish how awestruck I am
I never leave comment anywhere.ever.
I am a Bangladeshi living in Montreal(just to show I’m not even a regular designing-blog-reading-comment-leaving-crowd)
This is AMAZING! I would love to do this with white linen fabric but I’m not too sure it would come out as awesome as this. Excellent job!
How did you manage to pull the fabric so tightly by yourself? I’m considering doing it but am not sure if I should invest in canvas scissors or if those would damage the wool. Thanks!
I just used regular kitchen scissors and they were fine, but a fabric store could probably recommend something. About pulling– for the headboard, start by stapling once in the middle of each side, pulling tight (top-bottom, left-right). For the rails, I started by stapling each end and then stapling the top part of the fabric for about a foot (not really worrying about pulling, just making sure the fabric went far enough down so the staples wouldn’t be visible once the mattress was on it), then going back and stapling the bottom, pulling tight with one hand while the other stapled. Mostly I think it’s just about using a LOT of staples, like pretty much without any space in between them. It also helps if your stapler doesn’t have a safety button you have to push to use the trigger, it just makes it a bit more awkward to use. Good luck!
Love this post! You inspired me to read through the rest of your blog, and I’ll definitely be back to see what else you get up to!
Beautiful! I’m so impressed!
Thank you SOoooooo much for this great post! (I found you via Ikea Hacker) I’m in the market for a new bed frame and I think you just pulled me back from the precipice of paying $1,000 for one.
I have a Dalsev and I’ve been lazing around waiting for someone more motivated than I to plan out an upholstery scheme for that baby. I toyed with blankets but they rip. I never thought of a wool blanket from the A/N Store no less. Way to go. I’ll try this soon. Thanks.
Absolutely amazing! I’ve been looking for an upholstered headboard for a while and then saw your bed on ikea hacker. I’d love to do the whole bed frame like you did but we are planning on moving in about a year and I worry I won’t be able to disassemble it. Can you still take yours apart or is it there to stay?
No, I think the one downside to this is that the upholstery does conceal the screws that keep the bed together. To take the bed apart, I’d have to re-expose the front corners as well as the center of the footboard, but it’s possible I could just re-staple the fabric once reassembled. Otherwise, I might just have to replace the fabric on the rails and footboard (the headboard would be fine), but I think it’s a worthwhile trade-off– our lease is for a year so who knows, I might be moving again in a year too!
Dan, this is amazing. I usually hate personal blogs, but yours is quality. I stumbled across yours because I just moved and was looking for reviews of the Fjellse bed from Ikea – I was just planning to stain and finish it but you’ve inspired me to try something completely new! So thanks for sharing your beautiful bed with the world and for helping me jazz up my own room.
Great job — I second the electric stapler recommendation for any project requiring more than 10 staples. If you ever have the chance to visit one, Harbor Freight Tools is a discount tool/hardware place — generic tools that work just fine and waaaay cheaper than the Depot (but they don’t sell lumber, pipes, etc. just tools).
Your bed is great!
Wow! That’s an incredible bed! Fantastic idea to use the army blankets!
this is insane!! I have a similar frame from IKEA as well. Was going ot replace it but this is great! better than having to repaint the whole dang thing again. HA! my DH is even in the Navy…have to check with him about old wool blankets.
Good for you, Dan! I’ve been thinking of doing an upholstered headboard for a while, so here are some thoughts on tufting that I think will work. What do you think ?
Drill small holes in the desired tufting pattern through the plywood backing before the construction and batting process. ( I’m also thinking of adding a layer of high-density foam under the batting.) After the upholstering step, make covered buttons out of the same fabric. There are different-sized covered button forms at sewing or fabric stores, but you have to experiment to see whether your fabric is too thick or not. Otherwise, buy a small amount of thinner wool or fabric (such as linen) of your choice for the buttons. Or use actual buttons, as you said, but I think it would defeat your tailored look. Stick a long needle with a large eye threaded with multiple strands of a strong thread such as linen from behind the plywood through all the layers, loop through the button and back out through the hole and pull tight to create the tuft. Wrap the strings around a thin nail placed horizontally across the hole behind the plywood and tie off. Voila!
In the different strokes for different folks category:
One could cut down the height of the legs for a better proportion. Also , a variety of replacement legs in many styles are available at upholstery shops or online.
One could paint the legs a matching color for a more unified look, or upholster them too.
Some one else (like me, for instance) might consider framing the headboard in finished hardwood. Adds to the expense, though, and more carpentry, wood finishing,and fiddling.
You da man, Dan!
Thanks Sharon! My big plan for adding tufting (which, to be honest, I’m not sure will ever happen… I kinda like the bed without it) was to figure out where I want the buttons, mark the spot on the back of the ply (remember, the back is all exposed), and drill two holes to either side of the mark, leaving about a half-inch in between. Then stick the long needle through from the front so that loose ends of the thread come out both holes in the back and then tie them tightly together. I’m probably offending anybody who knows anything about upholstery. Your way is probably much better…
Oh, and be careful with the foam– for this particular bed, since I added the plywood to the front of the existing headboard and then batting on top, it does give the mattress a cozier fit in the frame since I lost about an inch with the additions. So make sure you consider that, you don’t want to pad the bed to the point that your mattress doesn’t fit! Speaking for myself, the batting is quite cushy enough, but it’s a matter of personal taste. Also, about the legs, it’s true that you could swap them out but there’s a center support beam with three legs that would need to be changed accordingly. Not a big job at all, just something to keep in mind. And wrapping the headboard in wood… mmmm yes please.
So awesome. But I have a pre-upholster question for the frame…
After buying said FJELLSE frame, I put it together to make sure I had it right before attempting the upholster DIY.
Thing is, my mid-beam seems to be “mobile”. Just sitting down to fast on one corner of the bed causes my mid-beam to swing/bend to one side and the whole bed kind goes off kilter.
Did you notice this? Did you find the holes in the midbeam sized properly to the screws? Or did you use a driver to stick these screws in? I am scared to even toss and turn while sleeping in fear of the FJELLSE frame giving way. I’m on the petite side but am confident I have the strength to put together my Ikea products.
Anyway, I need to sort this out before I can eve attempt to your uber-cool upholster. Any feedback would be great.
Hmmm. I don’t really have any problems with the mid-beam on mine, although I do remember those particular screws being the most difficult part of the assembly just because of force required to get them really tight. Are you positive you used the correct screws for that part? Mine is still a little moveable (you can kind of turn it back and forth a bit), but it definitely doesn’t move to the degree you’re describing or affect the rest of the frame.
If your whole frame is going off kilter, it sounds to me more like the side rails need to be tightened more than the mid-beam, which I think is really there more to support the slats. I didn’t try to find a drill bit (I did the whole thing at like 2 in the morning, hardware store was closed) so I used the little ikea allen wrench, but the best advice I can give is to get those screws as absolutely tight as you can make them. If the mid-beam is still giving you problems, you might try drilling two holes on either side of the existing screw and driving some wood screws into those since more than one point of attachment won’t allow it to move back and forth. Hope that helps and good luck!
That looks amazing! If we hadn’t just redone a bed for our room I’d follow your tutorial in a heartbeat!
I love this and plan on making a version of it myself. Did you have to buy just one blanket? What size was it?
The blanket was marked 62″ x 80″, but it was actually several inches larger in width and height, so I only had to use one! I think that’s the standard size for these. Of course, I also left the back unupholstered and I have a full bed, so you’ll need to adjust if you’re going to go about it differently, I had almost zero leftover fabric. Good luck!
This is Fantastic and you are hilarious. I am so happy to have found this article during my countless research hours on how to upholster a bed frame. I am about to attempt this process on a sleigh bed frame, Wish me luck!! or call me crazy. Here is a link of the $4,500 bed that I will try to recreate (minus the tufted buttons, that’s too much work and not enough experience):
I love your creativity. If I can pull this one off then I might try to build a desk. Just kidding.
First off, I wanted to say I LOVE your blog. Thank you so much for all of the wonderful decor ideas.
I loved this post so much that I was inspired to upholster my own IKEA bed.
Yours looks much nicer though.
Here’s what mine ended up looking like:
Thanks Joy, it’s super cool for me to see somebody take this project and make it their own! Good job! Super smart with the two pieces of wood, btw.
But now that i took MY bed apart…I dont know HOW to put it back together!!!
Do you have the instructions for this thing?
LOVE WHAT YOU DID!
You can see the assembly instructions for the Fjellse by going to this page and clicking the Fjellse link! Good luck!
Oh my god you are amazing! I’m buying the Fjellse too, but had only picked it because it was the cheapest thing I could find (poor college student, what can I say). When I googled Fjellse your bed was the first image that came up – you make it look soo good! Although I’m not handy at all, you have given me inspiration. Maybe after I get through the initial hurdle to building the bed I’ll try to spruce it up. I will defs be stalking your blog from now on
This is really great! Thanks for sharing this….and the blanket idea, brilliant. Upholstery fabric is so expensive and this is an excellent idea. I love seeing things re-purposed things creatively!
Just wanted to mention that after I saw a picture of your bed on a friend’s blog (and commented back in August) I was inspired to do something similar in our guest room. You may have already seen that I linked back you your post a couple times, and I wanted to let you know that I’m guest blogging sometime next month and will be including another link to this fabulous redo in that post as well.
You may already know this, but Kate Pruitt from Design*Sponge has a post on Currency today and linked to your bed if you click on the part that says Bedroom 3! Go you! https://getcurrency.com/blog/customizable-and-budget-friendly-bed-frames
Holy crap, I am so impressed by you. Awesome blog.
Also, I have that same round side table. Love!
This blog really motivated me to step up my bed from living on a box spring.
So today, I went out and bought the bed, and all the items needed, and 14 hours later.
Got it all done.
Thanks for the great step by step. Really enjoyed building this whole thing.
Oh my god, look at that!! Cool! Excellent job, sir. Isn’t the best part of this project that when you’re done, you can wipe the sweat off your brow and go to sleep in it?
That truly was the best part!
Thanks again, i think it was the wit in your copy that made it seem quite possible, and so it was.
Thank you for being a piece of what makes the internet cooler. I am totally doing this. I kchunk my staple gun in salute of your ingenuity and generosity in sharing.
You have continuously inspired me, I have been building stuff for our home, and I am sending a link to my 2 older sons who are students in london, and like to be clever with their space, but who also don’t have a lot of cash… your mother must be soooo proud of you!
Love the look! Was considering buying the same frame from Ikea too. So I Googled the name of the bed frame and saw your nifty blog :).
Hopefully I can do something similar but maybe I’ll use velcro. I have the Karlstad sofa which looks chique and minimalist and they used velcro which seems to hold fine.
I love the fabric you used. Looks very sleek with the batting puffing it up. I’m considering doing the same thing with the headboard but my only concern is any warping of the plywood in the summer I guess. Other than that it looks lovely, kudos!
Thanks for posting the tutorial, Daniel! I was totally inspired to redo my Fjellse bedframe and followed your tutorial on building the add on to increase the height of the headboard. I blogged about it here [where I also blogged about your post and included a pic of your finished bed. hope you don't mind ]
Great job!! And thank you for letting me know, I LOVE when I see people make any of these projects their own! Well done, Trinh! (oh, and I don’t mind at all! It’s only bad when people use stuff without credit/links, otherwise you’re just making me blush.)
This is amazing. Thank you for inspiring me!
I have one question though. On the IKEA website, it recommends buying the slatted bed base ($30 full, $40 queen) in addition to FJELLSE. Did you do this? If not, do you think the side beams & mid beam provide enough support?
Hi, I’d been thinking about upholstering an old cane lounge suite that i have in grey wool blankets and started googling and found this post. I loved the bed idea so much I’ve gone back and read from the beginning (Stalker much?) Your style is nice and crisp and colourful – even in your prose. Looking forward to seeing the apartment evolve.
Just in case your a nosey parker like me the suitelooks like this but MUCH nicer http://www.trademe.co.nz/Home-living/Lounge-dining-hall/Lounge-suites/Suites/auction-333656586.htm
What do you think a tailored look in grey wool or a crumpley beige linen?
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