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DIY Headboard Alternatives: 3 Bold Ways to Break Tradition

A bed without a headboard can have minimalist impact -- or, depending on the space, it can leave a large wall looking very empty and a bedroom uninspiring. Some bed frames simply don't come with headboards, but that doesn't mean you have to live with the look. We asked interior designer Amber Lewis of Amber Interiors to dream up three DIY headboard alternatives that you can achieve on a small budget -- and with little effort!

Amber Interiors Headboard Alternatives
Interior Design: Amber Lewis

Do you feel like your headboardless bed is just ... missing something visually? "The fun thing about not having a headboard is you can easily update your look whenever you feel like it." says interior designer Amber Lewis, who actually considers the dilemma an opportunity to get creative. Though a large piece of art is an obvious solution to an empty wall, it can be a pricey way to go. Here, Lewis offers several unique and budget-friendly DIY headboard alternatives for creating visual interest in the bare space above your bed.

Amber Interiors Headboard Alternatives
Interior Design: Amber Lewis

Hang a Textile

If you’re bohemian at heart, this is the easiest and most budget-friendly way to create a statement behind your bed. Simply pin a large, patterned textile that you love to the wall. If you’re a perfectionist, you might want to hang it with a curtain rod instead.


New or vintage textiles work equally well, as long as they're at least 3/4 of the width of your bed. Vintage suzanis and Moroccan wedding blankets (traditionally used at the foot of a bed) make excellent options for wall hangings.

Amber Interiors Headboard Alternatives
Interior Design: Amber Lewis

Make a Mirror Cluster

A cluster of decorative mirrors can be arranged in any shape or composition. For instance, use rattan mirrors for a more laid-back coastal feel, or metallic sunburst mirrors for a more modern look.


You can use a single large mirror, or a cluster of smaller ones arranged in a cohesive way, with proper spacing between each one (remember, measure twice, hang once). If used properly, mirrors can also trick the eye into making the space appear bigger and more luminous. Safety alert: Mirrors tend to be on the heavy side, so make sure to properly secure them to avoid a rude awakening!

Ace Hotel Headboard Alternatives
Photography: Nicholas Stockton, Wall Hanging: Sally England

Make Your Own Macrame Weaving

If it's good enough for the Ace Hotel, it's good enough for your bedroom. Do as artist Sally England did for this popular hotel's guest bedrooms and hang a macrame weaving. (If you told me a year ago that I would be promoting the use of macrame in decor, I would never have believed you.)


Macrame, originally made popular in the '70s, is back in a big way -- and wall weavings are popping up everywhere. Macrame weavings work especially well in neutral decor palettes, and their highly textured nature will easily warm up an all-white space. The best part? If you’re a little crafty or you care to learn something new, trying making a macrame weaving yourself.


Looking for another great project? Dress up your bedroom with some DIY wooden candle holders!