Whitewashed Barn Wood Headboard


I have been waiting to write this post for over a year. The headboard I have been asking for is finally finished!

It all started over a year ago when I spotted this headboard via Pinterest. I instantly fell in love, and since Brandon is pretty handy (and it came with all the measurements and instructions) I was sure he could build it. We have never had a bedroom set. When we got married and moved in together, we pushed our king size bed against the wall and called it good. Our KIDS have nicer bedroom furniture than we do! I felt like we were still like college kids, just making the best of it.

For 7 years we made the best of it, and I am so glad we waited!

We started seriously looking at bedroom furniture over a year ago, before moving was even on our radar. But HOLY expensive, Batman. We just couldn’t bring ourselves to spend that much money on bedroom furniture. I had the perfect set picked out but we never bought it. Good thing, too, because our room at the new house wouldn’t hold that much furniture.

Brandon had all of these big old boards from an old corn crib that they tore down, so we hauled them to our house (in August– I’m telling you, this poor guy was getting SO tired of me hounding him about the headboard) and three weeks ago, he started on it.


This is how the boards looked when we started. Brandon tried to keep it as rustic looking as possible, so we didn’t sand it either.


Truthfully, the hardest part of this project was deciding how to finish it. I loved the rustic look, but with a white dresser and gray nightstands, I knew we couldn’t stain it too dark. I also wasn’t a fan of it being that light. I talked to a good friend of ours and she suggested that I whitewash it. I had NO IDEA how to even go about this, so thankfully she told me how and even came by to look at it before I started.

To test it, I started with some white chalk paint watered down slightly, and a scrap piece of wood. I didn’t have enough chalk paint to do the entire headboard, so I ended up purchasing a quart of water based latex paint. When I added the tiny amount of water to the paint, it dried somewhat cloudy so I ended up just using the paint, no water, and drybrushing it on.


I dipped my paintbrush in the paint, then brushed most of the excess of it on one scrap piece of wood. Whatever paint was left, goes on the headboard (or whatever project you are doing!) and you just repeat it until your whole piece is painted.

I was very skeptical at first because I wanted it to look perfect, and after doing one of the legs, I will admit I thought I ruined the whole thing. It just wasn’t turning out like I thought! Karen ended up coming out and assuring me that I would love it when it was all done, so we started painting and 20 minutes we had it done.


Again, I was skeptical of the whitewash but it did look pretty similar to the inspiration pic I had pinned. A few days ago, my brother in law came and helped Brandon carry it in the house. I LOVE it. It really finishes off our room.



The bed plans include a footboard and side rails as well, and now that we know it will fit, Brandon is going to go ahead and build that, too. Stay tuned… (I just hope it won’t take a whole year!)



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