Old Brass Headboard Makeover

I have been on the lookout for a headboard for a few years now. When I saw this ugly brass headboard on a local selling site, I passed over it at first:

Not much to look at, is it? When I saw it pop up again, I offered the lady $10 and she accepted. It’s not what I had been hoping for, but since my husband now wants to build a headboard, this will be a good place holder while I wait. Because we all know how long it takes when your handy husband says he wants to build something. Can I get an amen?

I started by lightly sanding everything, then spraying it with a layer of primer.

Then it got a few coats of Rustoleum Oil Rubbed Bronze.

I had never used the metallic spray paint before and I was super impressed. Look how pretty it is:

Now I get what all the hype is over this product. Those sparkly flecks make the whole project feel legit. No one would ever guess that this headboard was a $10 junker. With it’s new coat of paint, this thing is gorgeous!

Now my husband can take his sweet time making a custom headboard, because I could live with this one for years. Which we all know is exactly how long it will take him to make a different headboard anyway.


  1. What a shame! You turned a lovely brass headboard into an ugly old-iron look that harkens back to the 1920s and '30s. You can find ugly old iron headboards for almost nothing. Don't pick up brass pieces if you don't like brass!

    • I'm sorry you didn't like how the headboard turned out. This particular bed was in bad shape… the brass was splotchy and scratched and if I hadn't rescued it, it probably would have just ended up in the dump. I am happy that I could rescue a piece of furniture and make it something that I love.

  2. Hi there,
    I am working on this exact project. I have a question regarding the way that you would have fastened the frame to the headboard. I do not have the original bed screws/ bolts, is there a certain way you recommend attaching?

  3. This is exactly what I want to do with a hideous brass headboard I bought a decade ago (who knows what I was thinking back then). Could you please give me some guidance on what kind of primer I can use? Also, is it necessary to sand it if it is not damaged or blotched? Thanks!


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