heaboard types: mustard headboard

 Exploring Headboard Types: How to Choose the Perfect Headboard to Fit Your Bedroom Style

A stylish headboard is the crowning glory of any bed. It elevates the look and feel of a bedroom, and it gives an air of luxury and comfort to a bed of any size. It adds an undeniable touch of class to your boudoir, and it provides the ideal perch when you are sitting up, reading, or simply lounging in bed with a cup of tea on a lazy Sunday morning.

Investing in a quality headboard is a great way to express your personal taste and style, instantly adding a touch of glamour to your bedroom via the type of materials and design you choose.

As a statement piece, it can transform your room from ordinary to wow in an instant, working to complement the other furniture in the space when chosen with time and consideration.

Join us as we explore the different types of headboards available so that you can find the perfect fit for your space. Considering an overhaul of your bedroom? Then, check out our bedroom furniture guide for an in-depth exploration of all the bedroom furniture pieces you’re likely going to need.

We’ve also got a handy bed-buying guide if you’re looking for a new bed to match your headboard choice. With that being said, let’s get started! 

Types and styles of headboards

Headboards were originally designed as a functional piece of furniture, providing insulation against cold walls in earlier years. The headboards crafted today have come a long way from their humble beginnings; they are multifaceted, offering both fabulous style and functionality. Let’s take a closer look at the most popular types and styles available to you right now.

Grey tufted fabric headboard with buttons.

Wooden headboards

Wooden headboards are a popular choice for those who like a classic or traditional style of décor. Most popular in traditional or timeless-style homes, these can sometimes include features such as intricate carvings and a variety of finishes.

You’ll also find a sleeker, cleaner version of wooden headboards in contemporary homes. In fact, they work well in most bedroom settings thanks to the incredible choices in design and style.

Wooden headboards are known for their durability, but they are also a wise choice for allergy sufferers in your home, as they don’t trap dust like fabric ones and are easily cleaned. 

However, it’s worth mentioning that for those who move a lot in their sleep or sit up in bed while reading a book, a solid wood headboard might not be the most comfortable choice.

Metal headboards

Usually crafted from brass or wrought iron, metal headboards possess charm and chic elegance. They are often used in vintage or modern styles and can work especially well when designed in a minimalist or contemporary industrial style, evoking a sleek, modern vibe that complements a variety of such homes. Metal headboards are robust and long-lasting, often outlasting their wooden or fabric counterparts.

On the downside, metal can be cold to the touch, making it uncomfortable for those who lean against it. And then there’s the maintenance. Metal headboards can be prone to rust or discoloration if not cared for properly or exposed to moisture. But all in all, they are a great choice if you’re seeking durability, style versatility, and a timeless addition to your bedroom.

Upholstered or fabric headboards

A fabric headboard provides the ultimate experience in luxury and comfort. There are a multitude of fabric colours and textures available, so you will have lots of options to choose from when selecting the ideal fit for your home.

Grey curved tufted fabric headboard.

The most popular types of upholstered and fabric headboards are:

  • Velvet:  Dreamy soft to the touch and often comes in rich, inviting colours. Who wouldn’t want a velvet headboard to cushion their head as you settle into a cosy night with a good read? Velvet’s great for bringing a touch of luxury and elegance to your space.
  • Suede: Soft and plush, a suede upholstered headboard makes a cosy choice for any bedroom. It’s unique texture instantly adds depth to any bedroom decor.
  • Leather: A sleek and sophisticated choice, we love how easy to maintain a leather headboard is. One lick of a cloth, and you’re done. What’s more, it’s durable. Even the faux leather headboard variations can have excellent durability qualities.
  • Linen: Looking for an elegant and refined look? Then, take a look at luxe linen headboards. Bonus marks for the fact that linen headboards are so durable, too. But word of caution: they can wrinkle easily, too.
  • Tufted or button-back: A classic design that never goes out of fashion, many fabric headboards come adorned with a deep tufting design which is the ideal choice for adding an element of depth and luxury to the design. Suitable for modern and traditional homes alike.

Whether your preference is leather or linen, velvet or twill, upholstered headboards are ideal for those who enjoy lounging in bed or perhaps browsing on an iPad. But bear in mind they do need that extra care with cleaning and maintenance and might not have the same level of durability as their wooden or metal counterparts. 

Bookcase headboards

A bookcase headboard is ideal for those who love to read. These do exactly what they say on the tin, basically, as they have built-in shelves for storing books! The shelves also come in very handy for storing essential items, such as reading glasses, an alarm clock, a bottle of water, or whatever you wish to have on hand.

Panel and slat headboards

Wooden or metal panel and slat headboards offer a unique and slick design and are ideal if you want to highlight the bed as the main feature in the room.

They add an element of drama to a space, and their clean lines and low-maintenance qualities make them a popular choice with both hotels and homes. Depending on the finish, they work well with a variety of styles, including modern, minimalist, retro, rustic, and traditional.

How to choose the perfect headboard for your bed

With so many popular styles, shapes, patterns, textures, and colours to choose from, headboard shopping may initially seem a little daunting. However, we are here to help.

Taupe velvet tufted fabric headboard.

Here are the top things to consider prior to selecting the perfect one to match your bedroom style, personal taste, and needs:

1. Consider the size of the bed and bedroom

Headboards will work in a room of any size and on any size bed, from single to super king. However, it is important that you know the size of your bed or mattress and your wall space before choosing one for your bedroom. (Learn more about buying the perfect bed in our bed buying guide, which makes the whole process a cinch!)

For starters, it should be proportionate to the size of the room and the bed. If you select one that is too small, it will look lost in the space. If you choose one that is too large, it will overpower the room. The ideal headboard will be slightly wider than your bed so that it will frame the bed perfectly.

If you’re not sure what size works best for the space available to you, do not fret. Most furniture stores, including ours, have experts on hand to help you choose the correct size  for every scenario.

2. Note your personal style and décor

When picking a headboard for your bedroom, it is important to consider the décor of the space. Choose a headboard that complements the overall colour scheme, furniture, and accessories in the room, as this helps with the design flow of the space.

If your bedroom is small, opt for a lighter-coloured headboard to open up the space. Alternatively, if you have a larger room, consider a headboard with bold or vibrant colours or patterns so that it works as a statement piece.

3. Keep in mind comfort and functionality

The right headboard strikes a balance between both. For fabric headboard fans, having a soft cushion-like surface to lean against while reading, relaxing, or watching TV in bed heightens the overall quality of your downtime. Meanwhile, functional aspects like bookcase storage or adjustable features can optimise your bedroom space and adapt to your lifestyle needs.

Black wooden framed headboard with grey fabric feature.

4. Seek quality materials

Make sure to select a headboard with a study frame and a supportive structure to ensure longevity.

A high-quality headboard should also offer excellent insulating properties. For example, one made with thick, padded material can act as a barrier, trapping heat and absorbing sound. It also helps reduce drafts, ensuring a consistent temperature throughout the night, meaning you get the night’s sleep you deserve. 

5. What’s your budget?

Determine your budget prior to heading off headboard shopping. Go for the best-quality one within your price range, as it will be more durable and you won’t have to replace it as often. The price varies considerably depending on the materials, size, and craftsmanship involved. 

6. Look for easy installation and maintenance

A headboard can be attached to your bed with wooden slats, or it can hang on the wall behind the bed. Either way, ensure that it is easy to install and that it is hung safely and securely.

Also, consider the cleaning and maintenance involved. A leather-covered headboard will be easier to clean than a linen-covered headboard, and a wooden headboard could mean more dusting.

Some headboards have removable, washable covers, which are ideal for busy homes with lots of family members or those with little kids who may have sticky hands or be prone to spilling.

Taupe fabric headboard with silver stud detail.

7. Consider eco-friendly options

There are many eco-friendly headboard options available, such as styles that are made from reclaimed wood, natural materials, and repurposed textiles. What’s more, good-quality ones can be easily repaired or reupholstered, reducing waste and helping to support a better environment.

A headboard provides the ultimate luxury when it comes to comfort and support. They help to create an inviting and cosy atmosphere in a bedroom of any size, and they also improve relaxation and sleep quality. The right one will enhance the décor of a bedroom and the overall design flow of the space.

It’s also the perfect choice to instantly create a warm and inviting atmosphere in any bedroom. Rather than seeing it as a chore, you can have lots of fun letting your creative juices flow as you select the perfect fit for your home. This is one furniture accessory that is guaranteed to elevate the style of any space it graces, so don’t hesitate to let your design style shine.

 You can check out the full range of headboards here


Nicola O'Sullivan

Nicola O’Sullivan

Nicola O’Sullivan holds the position of PR Manager and Interior Design Writer at Corcoran’s Furniture, where she applies her sharp eye for interior design. She is in the process of earning a diploma from the globally recognised Interior Design Institute, further enhancing her expertise in the field.

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