How to Make a Leather Tufted Headboard

A bedroom often looks unfinished without a headboard, but they are expensive and take up too much space in an already cramped room.

An upholstered headboard is comfortable to lean against and adds decorative fabric to your room. This will soften edges and make it look like you hired a designer to decorate your bedroom. Leather is a great choice for headboards because it is sturdy and can be easily cleaned with leather cleaner and a soft cloth. Adding tufting gives a more polished and professional appearance to your DIY project. .

Apply bunting to front, top and sides of foam headboard using craft glue. Use more bunting for a denser, more padded headboard. Allow glue to dry completely.

Lay leather fabric, leather side down, on a flat work surface or on the ground. Make sure it is perfectly smooth. Lay the foam headboard on top of the leather. Cut the leather, leaving roughly 8 inches on every side of the headboard.

Fold leather over the edges of the foam headboard beginning with the sides. Pull tightly, smoothing any creases as you go. Staple the leather to the back of the headboard using a staple gun. Don't worry about exposed staples or messes on the back of the headboard. This side will be against the wall.

Turn the headboard over often to smooth lumps. Staple around every side until you achieve a smooth, finished look. Trim the excess leather from the back of the headboard so the piece will hang flush to the wall.

Using buttons and a needle, attach buttons to the headboard. Tufting will be created when you pull the button tightly against the front of the headboard creating a divot. Secure the buttons.

Attach picture hanging brackets to the back of the headboard. Hang your headboard on the wall a couple of inches lower than the top of your mattress.

Things You Will Need

  • Foam board cut to desired width and height
  • Bunting sheets
  • Leather
  • Staple gun
  • Craft glue
  • Large sewing needle
  • Thread
  • Buttons
  • Picture-hanging brackets


  • Foam board can be cut in any shape you like, but a rectangular or square shape will be easiest to work with when applying the leather. Leather is not the only fabric you can use; this project can be done with most sturdy fabrics.

About the Author

Lisa East Hunter is a consultant and freelance writer in Phoenix. Her background in marketing and technology led her to explore all avenues of writing. She is currently dividing her time between freelance writing and her consulting business. Hunter has a Bachelor of Science in management information systems and marketing.