Ideas + Advice

Baby + Kids

How To Shop for an Upholstered Bed

Upholstered beds + headboards are increasingly popular, and no wonder: They're the ultimate in comfort, providing a luxe backrest for, let's admit it, watching TV, scrolling on iPads and reading in bed. They're a great way to add softness, a splash of color or style by the yard to your bedroom. Many of our upholstered beds and headboards come in dozens of special-order fabrics, from crisp linen weaves to plush velvets, so you can create just the look you want. Here's what to consider when shopping for one:

1. Do You Want an Upholstered Headboard or a Full Bed?

Our upholstered headboards are a great value and attach to any of our bed frames (or most steel frames with a slotted steel bracket). They're ideal if you're on a budget but want a custom look.

Upholstered beds create a more finished look, incorporating your chosen fabric on the full frame, including the footboard or platform. If you want to float the bed in the room, opt for a bed, which will be upholstered on both sides, versus a headboard, which often has plain muslin on the back.

1. Do you want an upholstered headboard or a full bed?

2. What Size?

2. What size?

Standard-height headboards are about 40"-44" high. Consider choosing a taller headboard (54"-60") if you're tall, have a high mattress or like lots of pillows or Euro squares. To get a sense of what height is right for you, measure from the floor to the top of your mattress, then from your waist to the top of your head. For children's rooms, you won't need as high a headboard.

3. Which Fabric?

Consider both the look of your room as well as care: Textured or variegated weaves will help camouflage dirt, while performance velvets, microfiber fabrics and leather or faux suede will stand up well to wear and be easiest to clean. A linen weave will provide a crisp, modern look, while velvet adds a touch of luxe.

3. Which fabric?

4. Distinctive Details

4. Distinctive details

Some of our upholstered headboards and beds come with nailheads or tufting for decorator detail. Tufted beds include button, grid (button-free) or panel tufting. Tufting adds great style but will require occasional vacuuming to keep fabric crevices clean. Tufted headboards also tend to be a little thicker—great for comfort but worth considering if you have a very small room.

Sleigh or wingback-style beds or curved or shaped headboards break up the rectangular grid and add style + softness. We also offer an upholstered storage bed with a pull-out drawer in the foot to add extra space for blankets, bedding and more.

5. Pros and Cons

Comfort and style are definite plusses for upholstered beds. They'll help break up the wood of dressers and keep your room from feeling too matchy-matchy. But you'll also want to take into account care–an upholstered headboard should be vacuumed regularly and you'll want to place a pillow behind your head, so hair oils don't stain the fabric over time. If you have serious dust allergies or pets who might claw the fabric, they might not be the best choice.

5. Pros and cons

6. Care

6. Care

Vacuum with a soft brush attachment or handheld vacuum. Spot clean as needed with a damp white cloth. If more serious cleaning is required, consult an upholstery cleaner.