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Madeline McGee, Advertising, Social Media, Photographer, Freelancer, Little Rock, Freelance

Madeline specializes in social media

strategy, advertising, and photography. 

She is based in Little Rock, Arkansas. 


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Madeline McGee, Suggested User, Instagram, Advertising, Social Media, Freelancer, Freelance, Advertise, Business, Google



Madeline is a advertising strategist, writer, and photographer based in Little Rock, Arkansas. She loves learning a client's vision and building their brand with creative content while working towards tremendous results. Madeline is available for freelance work and travel.   Read More...

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Dorm Decor- DIY Headboard

This is the easiest centerpiece for your dorm or room that makes a huge statement. I'm going to show you step by step how to make this pillowy headboard and deck up your dorm

Your home can say a lot more about you than just cleaning habits. Your home is a reflection of the memories that you treasure. I love looking around at paintings I took the time to do, small things like soda bottles that Austin and I shared together, or my grandmother's old Tiffany lamp that's half broken but still in a corner that lights up my room at night.

For as long as I can remember, I've loved decorating. My mom used to come in my room when I was 7 years old to find me cleaning, dusting, and organizing my room when it was past bedtime. Fast-forward 11 years and as most high school graduates, I was looking forward to moving out. However it was decorating my dorm room that I was the most enthused about. My past two summers were spent (as you can imagine) surfing Pinterest, preparing "the vision" for my dorm: painting canvases, thrifting and repurposing. Today, I'm going to tell you step by step how to make one of my favorite projects. This will make a big statement for little money and effort. Here's my coffee-sack headboard I made last summer.

COST: about $50

WHAT YOU NEED: plywood, fabric, mattress pad (optional), stapler gun, fabric glue, scissors

TIME: 5 hours

WHY YOU WANT IT: dorm walls are boring, this serves as wall decor/centerpiece, it's also functional as a cushion for studying/TV like a couch back for the time you're in bed

Quick tidbit, don't be intimidated by pictures of DIY crafts that you see on Pinterest. This was my "just finished" headboard picture that I took in my garage. As you can see it doesn't look near as cute here with its share of imperfections- but that's part of any DIY craft and all turns out a-okay!

STEP 1: Measure

To start with, you'll need measurements of how large you need the headboard to be. I brought a measuring tape when I went on a tour one day to get the dimension of the dorm bed. Start with how high you want it to go on the wall, then get a separate measurement of how high off the ground the headboard will need to be. Last, get the measurement of how long from just a little outside the frame of the bed you want the headboard to come out so you have a trim and not just a flatline.

STEP 2: Buy Supplies

I just bought plywood at Home Depot according the dimensions I measured, also I bought a few "plank" type pieces of wood to help prop/hold the headboard off the ground behind the bed.

As for the fabric, I chose to use burlap because of its durability and vintage look. I bought 2 coffee bags from a thrift store for $7 apiece and cut them in halves just piecing them together 'til I got the look I wanted. It's also a good idea to leave the trim or seam of the burlap that has more texture on the outside of the frame so you can show it off- it adds more character! If you go with the coffee bag/burlap look, I thought it was fun to buy totally different coffee bags, one had blue stripes, one had text on it so it added a little variety!


(OPTIONAL) You'll want to consider adding a mattress foam cushion (I used a full mattress pad $10 from ) to add some backing to your headboard. It seriously feels like a pillow leaning back on it and it gives some when you lean into it. If you decide to add this step, staple this to the plywood first wrapping the edges as much as you can around to the back after making sure the front is fully covered. Walmart

Next, decide just how you want your headboard to look. If your fabric has a certain text or print, lay it out on the (now covered) plywood and look at which direction you prefer the print to read. For example, my headboard would have had a different look to it if I had put the coffee bag label reading up and down instead of across.

After making your decision, do the same to the fabric as you did with the mattress pad. Don't worry about you being able to see the staples, no one is going to see the back with those showing... just be sure that you're stapling in the back of the headboard after stretching your fabric the way you'd like. To make sure the fabric was going to remain secure, in-between sides of the headboard that I was taking the staple gun to, I would piece small pieces of fabric tape to the mattress pad. This made sure I wasn't going to get any "bubble" looking parts in my headboard.

After this step, you should have one handsome headboard to pull your space together!

Want more ideas?

Learn how to make this a $20 fix in your room as a headboard-alternative.

Get this as your affordable headboard-alternative by reading my Deck Up Your Dorm post. For more decorating ideas, be sure to read my Your Interior, an Exterior of You blog post.

With love,