Headboards are a typical feature in any bedroom that can add style to your overall aesthetic while keeping your walls safe from a jostling bed. However, some people don’t enjoy the bulky, conventional headboards you attach to a bed’s frame, or they simply don’t enjoy the price. If this sounds like you, we have a brilliant alternative, use a room divider as your headboard!
In this article, we’re going to provide our top ten stellar tips for tossing out your basic headboard and upgrading to a room divider headboard instead. We’ll discuss factors you’ll need to consider, such as material, budget, and style, as well as things you can do with your divider headboard to make it a stunning accent piece that suits your tastes perfectly.
Table of Contents
- Have a Budget In Mind Before You Start Your Search
- Look at Your Room’s Style and Design First, Divider Second
- Use Your Bed Sheets As Inspiration
- Find the Size That Best Suits Your Room
- Consider Giving Your Divider Multiple Purposes
- Remember Material Matters
- Pick Patterns to Pack a Visual Punch
- Spruce Up and Personalize Your Headboard With Lights and Other Accessories
- Try Extending Your Headboard Vertically And Horizontally
- Flex Your Creative Muscles By Going the DIY Route
Have a Budget In Mind Before You Start Your Search
Before you run off and start gazing at the vast selection of room dividers you can choose from for your headboard, there’s one very important step you need to take first.
It’s extremely important to have a budget in mind for your room divider headboard, as this will guide your decision when it comes to choosing the headboard’s size, material, design, and other technical and aesthetic factors.
Room dividers can range substantially in price from a $50 budget-friendly and lightweight wooden divider to an $800 hand-sculpted and detailed metal divider. So, before you get your hopes up about what features you want in your room divider headboard, make sure you at least have a reasonable figure or price range that you’re comfortable spending first to keep you financially in check.
Having a budget can also help quickly remove the overwhelming number of options, so the time you spend searching for this headboard is more efficient and fun than a source of stress and frustration.
Look at Your Room’s Style and Design First, Divider Second
Once you have your budget in mind, the next step is to take a good look at the room your room divider headboard will be in and pinpoint the overarching style and designs present.
Before you purchase your room divider headboard, you need to decide what its role will be in the space you’re going to set it up. Ultimately, you have two options:
- Complement or match all other color schemes, designs, and textures already present in the room
- Function as a clear accent piece that stands out in the room without seeming out of place.
Regardless of which option you choose, this decision needs to be driven by the style and design elements that are already present in the room. This will ensure you purchase a room divider headboard that fits well with the aesthetic you already have, even if its role is to stand out.
For instance, purchasing a delicate, lacy, boho-styled headboard would look fantastic in almost any minimalist-designed room, as the designs will likely add texture to an otherwise flat space. However, if you placed the same headboard in a room with a more sophisticated aesthetic and decorated with metals and reflective surfaces, it wouldn’t be an effective accent piece because it would clash too much with the elements around it.
Allowing your room’s pre-existing style and design to guide your headboard hunt will, again, allow you to eliminate options faster and ensure everything works together for a cohesive look.
Of course, if you’re purchasing a room divider headboard for a new space, you have more freedom to either envision the room as a whole first or build your aesthetic around your room divider headboard.
Use Your Bed Sheets As Inspiration
There will inevitably be some people who love the shopping process and want to look at as many room divider headboard options as possible,a while there are others who are easily overwhelmed by options and just want to make a quick and easy decision. For these people, we recommend this tip.
In addition to using your room’s designs and style to your advantage, you can also use your bed’s sheets and comforters as inspiration for your room divider headboard.
You’d be surprised how many headboards can match the exact style, pattern, and colors of whatever sheets you have, and choosing one of these will guarantee that your bed space has a matching, cohesive look. Tying in these elements to other parts of the room, such as a floor rug or drapes, can really tie a room together and make it look like a professional job.
Worst case scenario, match the colors of your sheets and headboard. This is a very simple detail you can put into any filter that will reduce your options and at least ensure your color scheme is consistent even if the design or styles differ slightly.
Find the Size That Best Suits Your Room
Something many people might not consider when they start the hunt for the perfect room divider headboard is how large it should be.
You’ll want to know the appropriate size for your headboard before you search for one, as they can come in a wide range of heights and lengths. Choosing a headboard that is too small or too high unbalances the dimensions in your room and makes objects appear larger or smaller than they really are.
Ideally, the length of your room divider headboard should at least match the width of your bed, so it doesn’t seem out of place behind it. Pairing a bed with a small headboard will make the space feel off as if the bed is overpowering the feature behind it rather than them complementing each other.
Height is also something you’ll want to consider since room divider headboards tend to be taller than your standard bed-frame headboard. Remember to measure how high the ceiling is in your room, as adding a headboard a few inches below your ceiling can unintentionally make your room feel shorter and smaller. If the space is small to begin with, this is something you’ll want to avoid.
Length is a little more forgiving here. As long as the headboard is at least wider than your bed, you more or less have free reign in terms of how long you want it to be. It can extend to any nightstands you have, or it can even cover the entire wall behind your bed; the choice is yours. Just make sure whatever you decide on suits your space.
Personally, we recommend opting for a longer room divider since you can fold or remove extra panels if you find it’s too long versus purchasing a completely new headboard if the one you have is too short.
Consider Giving Your Divider Multiple Purposes
Using a room divider as a headboard is already a fun way to repurpose this basic piece of furniture to suit your needs, so why not take it one step further?
Not only do room dividers make good headboards, but you can also purchase a longer room divider to fulfill additional purposes, such as enclosing your bed and create a private nook that separates this space from the rest of the room.
While this might seem like an odd thing to do at first, we highly recommend it for individuals who live in studio apartments where space is already limited. Having this headboard and divider duo will help you create designated spaces in an otherwise open layout room.
This setup is also fantastic for privacy, making it an optimal choice for people, particularly college students, who share their bedrooms with a roommate.
Remember Material Matters
This might be one of the biggest decisions you have to make when it comes to choosing what features you want on your room divider headboard.
The number of materials room divider headboards can be made from is frankly shocking. The most common materials you’ll come across include:
In addition to these, there are some more unique room divider headboards made from mirrors, bamboo, and textiles for macrame.
Choosing the right material for your room divider headboard can be monumental, as this will often affect other factors, such as your budget and style.
If you’re looking at a metal room divider headboard, odds are, you have a decently sized budget as this is undoubtedly one of the most expensive materials you can choose. That being said, it is also one of the most durable materials that will ensure the longevity of your headboard far more efficiently than if you opted for a paper or plastic headboard.
Metals can be a harsh element in any room design, so it often suits clean, powerful, and elegant styles best, such as Art Deco, Modern, and Maximalist.
Paper, Fabric, Plastic, and Plexiglass
We’ve grouped these materials together because they are the most versatile and usually the cheapest options for your headboard.
If you really want prints, patterns, or vibrant colors behind your bed, your best bet is to buy a headboard made from one of these materials. Paper is usually the cheapest and least likely to last, whereas plastic is still affordable but has a tendency to either look really cheap or potentially rival the higher quality fabric and plexiglass headboards in both appearance and longevity.
With these materials, it’s more about what you’re willing to spend and the visual appeal you’re going for rather than a specific style, as you can usually find a headboard made from any of these materials that will match all styles.
A wooden room divider headboard is probably the most preferred choice, as this is a sturdy material that will last and provide an aesthetic charm without costing a hefty sum. That being said, high-quality wood can certainly give any metal headboard a run for its money as the priciest material.
While this is another highly versatile material, we recommend pairing a wooden room divider headboard with a Rustic, Modern Farmhouse, or Cottage styled room.
Cotton and Textiles
Out of all the materials listed here, cotton and textiles are the most comforting, charming, and culture-associated materials. These are the best options for rooms emitting a Scandinavian, Coastal, or Bohemian style for a more carefree and relaxed vibe.
In terms of cost, these materials usually lie somewhere between the cheapest options, like paper, and the pricier ones, like metals or high-quality woods. If you decide to purchase hand-crafted cotton or textile headboards with a lot of woven details, you can expect to spend substantially more, but you’ll have a stunning accent piece to show off.
Room dividers have deep historic roots that go all the way back to 4th B.C. China, so it stands to reason that a decent number of them are still made with bamboo and decorated with traditional Chinese art. As a result, this material is best for Asian, Chinoiserie, and Tropical styles.
If you want an authentic antique room divider as your headboard, A Chinese one made from bamboo is an excellent option. You’ll want to take extra precautions to maintain it, as bamboo is naturally durable but can quickly degrade without proper care, but the same could be said for the nicer wood headboards as well.
Bamboo itself isn’t overly expensive, but it is often used for artistic room dividers, so you might have trouble finding a cheap option that still has the same visual impact.
Our final material is probably the most uncommon, but you still see it from time to time. Mirrors might not be the safest choice as your headboard, considering one bad smack could crack the glass; however, they can be good accent pieces, especially in rooms with darker pallets, straight lines, and an emphasis on elegance.
Another benefit of mirrors is that they tend to help smaller spaces feel larger, so if you’re in a studio or a particularly small bedroom, installing a mirror headboard might help it feel less cramped.
The cost of this material varies substantially as it does with wood. You can find cheap, small mirror room dividers, or you can find larger, more expensive ones that are accented with nice woods or metals.
Pick Patterns to Pack a Visual Punch
Buying a new room divider headboard is the perfect opportunity to add eye-catching elements to your room that will elevate its design to better match your aesthetics, and the easiest way to do this is with patterns.
You can purchase room divider headboards in an array of patterns from florals to stripes to check boards and so many more. If your room’s design is overtly minimalistic or seems to lack flair, we highly recommend purchasing a patterned room divider headboard, as it will add energy, contrast, and creativity to your space.
Purchasing a fabric or plastic room divider headboard that has a pattern printed onto it is a nice budget-friendly option. However, if you have the funds to spare, consider upgrading these low-quality headboards for ones made of quality woods, metals, or even bamboo where geometric shapes and other patterns are carved or sculpted into the material for a spectacular accent piece.
Choosing a patterned room divider headboard is also a great alternative to wallpaper as it can pack the same visual punch and even extend to the length of your bedroom’s wall for a fraction of the time and money.
Spruce Up and Personalize Your Headboard With Lights and Other Accessories
Even with vibrant colors and interesting patterns, room divider headboards can fall a little flat for homeowners, especially if they aren’t fans of clean aesthetics.
A great way to spruce up and personalize your headboard is by donning it with a simple string of twinkling lights or other accessories, such as tassels, charms, and photos.
This can add that extra element of whimsy and character you’ve been searching for to make it feel more like it’s a part of your space and a reflection of you as a person.
If your room divider headboard is wide enough, you could also consider placing objects on top of it as a sort of makeshift shelf. While most aren’t wide enough to hold a plant pot, for example, you could balance a chalkboard with your name on it or other personalization. Alternatively, if you stagger your panels, you could potentially lay a board along the top of them (if the headboard is sturdy enough) and use that as a shelf!
For the budget shopper who could only purchase a cheap room divider headboard they weren’t a huge fan of, consider draping a nice tapestry or blanket over it that matches your room’s aesthetic.
Try Extending Your Headboard Vertically And Horizontally
Usually, when people search for a headboard, their vision stops at the space directly behind their bed. However, door panel headboards are highly versatile pieces that can extend far beyond the confines of your bed’s width for even more visual impact.
Extending your headboard vertically or horizontally in your room is a great way to add texture and create an even larger accent piece to captivate you as well as guests.
You can either extend horizontally to run along the head and side of your bed if it is located in a corner, or you can extend it vertically up to the ceiling. There are even some examples of room divider headboards that run along the ceiling directly above the bed.
This tip works best for headboards made of wood or metal rather than those printed with patterns on fabric or other materials. An especially good choice to make here is to choose a patterned wood or metal headboard that has some openings or transparency, so it blends in better with the room’s walls.
Flex Your Creative Muscles By Going the DIY Route
The vast majority of room divider headboards are going to cost at least $100 if you don’t want to purchase the cheapest option on the market. While this is usually much cheaper than the standard headboard, it might be more than some people are willing to spend. Alternatively, there’s always a chance that you could spend hours searching for that perfect headboard that matches your vision and never find it. In these situations, we recommend going the DIY route.
Creating your own room divider headboard is incredibly easy and one of the cheapest ways to get these unique pieces in your room or create one that is exactly what you’d been searching for.
You can arguably make a room divider headboard out of anything you have laying around your home, such as leftover wooden boards, bed sheets or blankets, wax paper and spray paint. The list is endless.
If you’re particularly crafty, you can even paint your preferred design onto whatever headboard you make. However, if you aren’t confident in your crafting skills, don’t worry; there are countless YouTube videos and article tutorials online that will show you exactly how to make these headboards all by yourself using affordable resources and tools.