DIY: Colette Upholstered Bed!

I know not many wives are begging their husbands to have another lady in their bedroom, but for the past couple of months I had been lusting after Colette.
Now before you click away from my blog let me clarify. For the past year or so my bed had been driving me nutty. There was actually nothing wrong it. It was in perfect shape and around 5 years old, but I couldn’t leave well enough alone.
The Colette bed from Crate & Barrel has been on my wish list for quite some time, but the $1,599 wasn’t really something I was lusting after.

So after a little begging and pleading Jon decided that making it was a great option! :)

It took two weekends to finish. One weekend to purchase wood, cut pieces and then assemble. Then life got in the way and we lived without the bed upholstered for two weekends and then this past Saturday we finished it.

For this project you will need the following supplies from Home Depot:
*This is for a Queen sized bed.

Qty 4:
1″ x 10″ fir boards. 2 of those boards will need to be 80″ long and the other 2 boards will need to be 61 1/2″. (These will be your sides and your head and foot boards)
Qty 4:
5/4″ x 4″ (aka five quarter board) fir boards that are 80″ long (These will be your side supports & center support)
Qty 1:
2″ x 4″ stud cut to 80″(This is part of your center support)
Qty 14:
1″ x 3″ fir cut to 60″ (These will be cross rails that your mattress will lay on)
Qty 1:
4′ x 8′ x 3 /4″ MDF sheet cut to 61 1/2″ wide (This will be your headboard)
Qty 2:
1″ x 4″ cut to 60″ (These will be used as lower supports)
Qty 2:
1″ x 3″ cut to 60″ (These will be used as lower supports)

The headboard is made out of MDF and with the help of a grid you can get the perfect curve. Jon made 6″ x 6″ grid boxes in order to check our curve. The grid is also helpful if you want to tuft your headboard.

First we used paper to create one half of the curve. This is done free hand so you can make it as extreme as you like.

Once you are happy with your curve cut it out with a razor blade. You have just created your template:

Then you lay it out:

Next trace curve with help of template on one half:

Then flip your template over to the other side and trace your template.

Make sure that the distance from the bottom of the template to the top of the mdf is equal on both sides.

*If your measurements are off then start again with the template, you want your curve to be equal on both sides.

To double check the curve with the help of the grid you can measure the points where the curve crosses the grid. This measurement should be equal on both sides.

Now the fun part. Take out your jigsaw:

And slowly cut along the curve:

You may get some rough edges so take out your belt sander and smooth them away.

Now that all of your pieces are cut it’s time to put it all together.

Take one 5/4″ x 4″ x 80″ board and nail it to one of your 1″x 10″ x 80″ boards. We nailed it 3/4″ above the bottom of our 1″ x 10″ so that our mattress would sit inside our bed frame. You will need to do this a total of 2 times. (These are your side supports)

Add liquid nails to the edges of the pieces you just created:

Now get your 1″x 10″ x 61 1/2″ boards (These are your head and foot boards) and nail them to your side pieces.

*Mount your 80″ side boards inside the 61 1/2″ head and foot boards.
**Your inside dimensions should now be 60″ x 80″ that is the size of Queen mattress.

To make sure that your frame is square measure from one corner to the opposite corner and then do the same of the remaining two corners. You will be making an X. If your measurements are identical you are good to go.

Flip your frame upside down and nail one of your 1″x 4″x 60″into the frame to support the head of the bed and then take your additional 1″x 4″ x 60″ board and nail into the foot.
Additionally take your 1″x3″x60″ boards and nail those evenly in the middle of the bed for added support.
Flip the bed back over and grab your remaining 5/4″ x 4″ x 80″ boards and your 2″ x 4″ x 80″ stud. Lay your 2″ x 4″ x 80″ stud flat and butt a 5/4″ x 4″ x 80″ board to side standing up and nail together. You should have a long U shaped support piece. Flip it over and lay it down the center of your bed. The center of your U shape support should be at 30″. Pictured below in the center:

In order to support your weight you must screw U shaped piece from the head and the foot of the bed. Now you must flip it on it’s side and screw your center support into your lowersupports:

In the lumber section at Home Depot you need to pick up 4 heavy duty top plates. (Pictured below) Along with 4 legs of your choice. Screw the heavy duty top plates into the corners of the bed and screw your legs into them.

We re-used the cross-rails from our original bed, but if needed here is where you would use your 14- 1″x3″x60″ boards. Lay them evenly across the entire length of the bed and secure them with nails.

Voila bed frame and headboard are finished. This took us one weekend, but not the entire two days. While there are a lot of steps it was a pretty easy project.

Now to make it upholstered. We used a queen sized mattress pad (Around $19 at Walmart):

Go around and wrap and staple:

For the base of the bed we purchased two twin sized mattress pads ($9 a pad) and cut them in half length wise. They don’t go completely around so there will be some seams, but under fabric it is not noticeable at all.

With your pieces cut you can just wrap and staple away:

Now you need to do the same with the fabric. We purchased 6 yards of neutral linen. We got it at a steal for $4 a yard!
* Because we didn’t want a seam the very bottom of the headboard is not covered with the linen. It’s up to you. Once it is screwed into the base you can not tell.

For the base you simply wrap and staple as well You do need to pay a little bit of attention to the corners. We wrapped completely down the side board and around 6″ past the foot board on both sides.

For the foot of the bed we simply folded over the edges of the fabric to give us a clean edge and stapled it down.
*If you purchase more yardage you could wrap the entire base with one continuous piece of fabric. Avoiding seams. We didn’t think of that till after we were finished. Oops!
**We didn’t cover the head of the base, because we were mounting the headboard directly on it.

To mount the headboard to the base we used books/magazines to prop it up to the height we wanted and measured to make sure it was equal on both sides.

Use the tape measure to also make sure when you are screwing into place you are going into the base and not your mattress! :)

For main support we used a 3″ nut and bolt to secure the headboard on the corners of the frame:

We put our bolts 8″ up from the bottom and 2″ in from the side:

This is what the bolt looks like inside the bed frame:

This is how it will look from the back of the headboard:

Once your sides are bolted into place you can use 1 5/8″ dry wall screws in the center of of the headboard for additional security. Again place all screws below 8″ so that you do not hit your mattress.

Now you are officially finished! If you know how to do upholstery then you can give your back of the headboard a finished look with fabric, but we left as is, because it is up against the wall.
You can now put everything back into place, make your bed, put on your jammies and go night, night.

Covering the bed in foam and fabric took between 4-5 hours.
We are so happy with it!

Now who is going to follow suit and DIY?

Estimated Cost:
$200 for wood, hardware and legs
$45 for foam
$25 for fabric

Total: $270 vs $1,599.99

Estimate Labor:
12-15 hrs. We split it up into 2 weekends, but it could be finished in one weekend.

***Writing this blog post took longer. It’s now almost 2 am and we are finally able to enjoy our bed and get some rest.

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77 Responses to DIY: Colette Upholstered Bed!

  1. Hamptontoes says:

    Isn't your husband just the sweetest one? He's always going along with your ideas! The bed looks great. Great team work!

  2. says:

    super tute! Your bed looks great, and I love how frugal you are!
    way to go!

  3. Karena says:

    I am so impressed!! Your bed looks fabulous and the pillows are perfect with the wallcovering!

    Art by Karena

  4. Kimmy says:

    That looks great! (and has also reinforced in my mind, that I need a jigsaw)

  5. Rachel says:

    Looks great!! My husband and I made an upolstered head board ourselves this month too. You can check it out here…

  6. Kate@TwentySixToLife says:

    Wow! This looks great!

  7. Scientific Housewife says:

    Wow, you are amazing! It looks great!

  8. Kristen says:

    loooove it! and yes, it is wonderful that your husband helps you :)

  9. sherry says:

    Holy Smokes! I will be the first one at your door with a casserole if anything should ever happen to you! [just kidding]. Your husband rocks!

  10. Jade @ Flip Flops + Pearls Design says:

    You have a saint for a husband!! The bed looks AMAZING!!!

  11. alanna rose says:


    Excellent job :)

  12. Shannon @ What's Up Whimsy says:

    Wow, I can't believe you took this project on! Now all I need is a cute little handyman husband and I'm all set to go!

  13. Liz @ It's Great To Be Home says:

    Gorgeous! (And I agree, your husband definitely deserves an award!!) :)

  14. Jennifer says:

    ya'll are SO crafty! it seriously looks awesome, Camilla! and the price difference says it ALL — hooray DIY!

  15. Janell @ Isabella and Max says:

    Wow, fabulous job! And adore the wallpaper!!!! Janell

  16. Flavia @ Estilo Home says:

    You two make such an amazing team! The bed looks like a look of work to do but it looks so great! I am very impressed.

  17. Haven and Home says:

    Camila look at you!!!! I think your Hubby wins the "Husband of the year award" for sure. LOOKS GREAT!!!!

  18. Splendid Sass says:

    Y'all did a great job! the bed looks just lie the Crate and Barrel bed.

  19. Stephanie Sabbe says:

    love love love it!

  20. K Dot says:

    I also made my own DIY Colette. Check it out. Do you plan to add nail heads?

  21. Sa-Sea Boutique says:

    I can't even tell you how much I LOVE this!!!!!!!! I have been dying to make a fabric headboard, but wanted more of a "master bedroom feel". THIS IS IT!!!!!!

  22. Erika at BluLabel Bungalow says:

    Speechless! Jon is the best of both worlds; hot hubbs AND handy with the tools. Fabulous job Camila and I just can't get over the wallpaper. Tres chic!

  23. DesignTies says:

    Good job!! And way better than spending $1600 to buy a bed!!

    Hubby and I designed and made our own upholstered bed too :-) It was surprisingly easy — I say this as the project suprvisor ;-) — and it came out great!! And it's much more comfortable than the store-bought bed we had before.


  24. casey at loft and cottage says:

    Absolutely awesome! I'm diy-ing a bed for a client soon and will be sure to share–you are an inspiration! BTW where did you get your inexpensive linen?

  25. LindsB says:

    omg, I'm obsessed!! I want one now!! Wanna trade your husband for my fiance for the weekend?? I promise to give him back in one piece, even after he's finished with my list of projects I need him to do :)

    LOVE this!! I think its one of your best projects yet!

  26. cassie @ hi sugarplum! says:

    You guys blow me away! Amazing…and so fun that you tackle the projects together. that bed is gorgeous!

    xoxo, cass

  27. Amber says:

    I have been coveting that bed too! That looks amazing! Thanks for the detailed tutorial!

  28. Kate {domestikatedlife} says:

    Quite the project, I love the final result!

    Your blog is dangerous — everytime I read a new DIY post it makes me want to head to Home Depot and buy more powertools!

  29. Centsational Girl says:

    Fantastic step-by-step Camila ! Love the final result, bravo!

  30. Bromeliad says:

    YOu are some kind of amazing.

  31. Nikki says:

    Oh my gosh! That turned out amazing! Where did you get the feet? What a Husband. Want to trade? Just for the weekend. Mine is an electrician so feel free to put him to work.

  32. Mrs. Chic says:

    It looks amazing – what a great project to work on with your husband!!

    Looks so amazing

  33. High-Heeled Foot in the door says:

    Thanks for all the sweet comments. Jon's is going to love all of the love coming his way. He is in for a surprise when he checks out the blog.

    The linen was purchased at a discount fabric place nearby. They don't have an online store. I don't always find what I need there, but for neutral fabrics I normally have my pick.

    The legs were purchased at Home Depot. They are in their lumbar section we had about 4 different styles to pick from.

    While the Colette bed has nail head trim we decided to do without it. With the busy wallpape and more pattern that we will be adding with fabric we wanted to keep the bed super classic and simple. It can be added on later if we want.

  34. Briar Oak says:

    Wow, what an incredible project. Your finished bed looks amazing! I love that you upholstered the box frame, too. It looks like it is from Crate & Barrel. I am impressed, I can't even upholster a simple chair seat!

  35. Mackenzie {Design Darling} says:

    You are a genius and your husband sounds like a sweetheart. Bravo!!!

  36. Tonia @Chic Modern Vintage says:

    WOW! Now that's what I'm talking about. Make it yourself!

  37. Sweet Nothings says:


  38. Julie says:

    That last photo is KILLER! Fabulous job!

  39. LiveLikeYou says:

    Another fantastic DYI!!! So impressed. Where can I buy the helpful,handy husband???

  40. Sofia Censoprano says:

    This was awesome! My next project is a headboard, but you took this to the extreme! Perhaps I'll have the guts to attempt this in the future. Cheers!

  41. jenna @ alittlebleu says:

    amazing! and your lucky to have a very handy hubby :)

  42. diane@onlinefabricstore says:

    Can I borrow Jon for just a couple of weekends? I'm sure he would enjoy a trip to San Diego. Nicely done guys

  43. Danielle Sigwalt says:

    And you know what…it is probably so much better made than the bed from C&B…great job!!

  44. Hello Lover... says:

    Umm I have been obsessing over this bed for a year now! This is awesome – there was someone on decorpad who did an amazing diy but her husband didn't and she wasn't super sure how. I even did a post including this bed yesterday – I think I am definitely going to have to put my husband to work on this one!

  45. Katie says:

    thank you thank you thank you! i really want the tate bed from c&b and decided long ago that the only way i'd get one is if i made it myself. i've been looking at various directions and tutorials online but this is much more similar to what i was thinking. it looks fantastic!

  46. liz @ bon temps beignet says:

    AMAZING! And it's funny you mention bringing another woman named Colette into your bedroom. Dont ask me how I know this but there's a swingers club in New Orleans called "Colette"… what a coincidence.

  47. paula says:

    wow. looks fabulous. you have one handy and willing man there.

  48. Danielle Oakey Interiors says:

    What an awesome diy project. Looks beautiful!

  49. Abbie says:

    Seriously. You two rocked this project!! It looks freaking awesome.

  50. my favorite and my best says:

    holy shit you made a fucking bed!!!!!!!!!

    as great as the bed is it is still super hard to look past that gorgeous wallpaper.

  51. Michelle says:

    Fabulous!!just fab. Good for you!

  52. Jacquelyn says:

    I'm totally thinking about doing this….now…to persuade the husband!

  53. Cherish @ My Cup of Tea says:

    WOW! I wish my husband would help me like that. BEAUTIFUL! Great job!

  54. Elizabeth says:

    this is awesome! for christmas, i am asking for a diy headboard. i'm going to have to show him this so he knows it can be done. bravo!

  55. Tiffany says:

    wow! i am BEYOND impressed! love your wallpaper, too!

  56. Evie says:

    Oh my goodness, major props to you! I just spent 20 hours this weekend painting a hutch…and you made an entire BED in less time! It is beautiful, and I love how much money you saved!

  57. Kelly@ColorSizzle says:

    Very impressive, and what a wonderful outcome! How great that Jon is so handy. Makes me want to give my husband a project, too! Terrific blog!

  58. Tammy@InStitches says:

    Awesome ! Your step by step instructions were so great.

  59. Natalie says:

    I tried to talk my husband into making an upholstered headboard and I just got a dirty look. How sweet of your husband! Have you seen this one:

    It is a very different style, but similar idea.

    Thanks for sharing. Now on to shame my husband for not building one for me!

  60. Cristin @ Simplified Bee says:

    Wow, your bed looks great and you hubby is so sweet to do that! Can I borrow him for a project? ;-)


  61. designstiles says:

    I'm lucky if I could get my husband to hang up a frame. So cool, you got yours to make you a bed! That's awesome.

  62. Alex says:

    Wow! That's great! My husband and I did an upholstered bed for our 2 yro and it was soooo easy that I'm thinking of doing one for us.

  63. GRACE HAPPENS says:

    you and your husband did an amazing job!!! LOVE it! sweet dreams in your new bed:) xo grace

  64. simply seleta says:

    Unnnbelievable. Brought my husband over to read this post with me…we are both totally impressed!!!!!

  65. Morgan @ says:

    GREAT job! So impressed – love your new bed! I just finished a diy upholstered headboard but to build the entire bed from scratch – wow!

  66. Courtney @ Project Pretty says:

    You are AMAZING. That's all. :)

  67. Deb's mind says:

    Camila… are one brave and amazing women. Great job on the bed and it is just gorgeous!! And your hubby seems like a sweetheart!!

  68. says:

    Oh my gosh YES! I just emailed this to my husband. This is exactly what we've been looking for! Thanks so much, I'll be linking as well.

  69. kathy says:

    We are smack dab in the middle of a remodel – wood floors, new appliances. I so do NOT need another project.
    Our mattress sits inside a water bed frame. Which I have always disliked. The headboard is this squarish thing that you can place a bedside lamp on.
    I can see padding the frame and the cream linen wrapped around it. How many times have I stumbled into this box frame in the night? The cushioning alone would work wonders. This might happen. Simple enough with a staple gun. Great photos and inspiration.

  70. Stephanie@cre8tive says:

    Jon you ROCK! What a great bed you guys created. I was wondering about the tutorial, it was very detailed and instructional, and as I was reading it I thought, wow this post alone took her forever. It looks just amazing and the step by step instructions are priceless. Thanks for sharing and taking the time to do this post.

  71. Rue de Vamp says:

    Just shared your tutorial. I want to do it!!

  72. ghost chair says:

    Impressive undertaking! If anyone's not quite up to the challenge, here's a more affordable option —

  73. bed frame says:

    You did a great job on this one! I am really impressed with what you did with the bed!

  74. Jenny says:

    Thanks for the instructions! I recently build this bed, modified for the King size. Hope you don’t mind I linked your blog for instruction details on mine!

  75. Sheileen Carlotto says:

    I made this bed myself…..well I let my husband help a little, clean up and cutting the boards, wouldn’t want him to feel left out…..we love it so much. I must say I was quite pleased with myself and it only took me a day total. I spred it out over two, made bed one day and upholstered it the next. I cannot thank you enough for the post. I’d been dreaming of a new bed and bedroom set for a really long time, just not the $$ that comes along with it. I drove past a yard sale (yeah for me) found some wicked awesome (from MA (: ) early 1900’s furniture in excellent condition and took it home for under $200. ( two dressers, a vanity and two mirrors in frames). That night I scoured the web looking for ideas to modify the bed I had. What I found was a high heeled YOU! The next day I took the bed punge. All I need now is to figure out bedside tables…..thanks so much for the inspiration. Little did I know all I needed was a High Heeled Foot to my butt! :)

  76. Sophia says:

    Wow, bravo great job!

  77. Becky says:

    I’m so impressed! I am considering buying the Colette bed used or making this. I’d save so much money making it, but time/tools/etc. are a bit tricky at the moment…you did such an awesome job;) Kudos!

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