Upholstered Box Spring

I am not very prompt when it comes to doing laundry. For whatever reason, it takes me forever to get around to washing it and then even longer to get around to folding it. So it is not unusual for a few loads dumped on the guest bed waiting to be folded. Needless to say, when I finally get around to it, it took a little while to work through the mound. This is not very important information except, when I spend any amount of time in a space, especially any time doing a mindless job, I can’t help but start dreaming, designing, and decorating in my head.


Since I am an instant gratification type, I have a tendency to abandon my tasks in search of ways to realize the brilliant idea I just came up with. Some may call this “inefficient,” or “procrastinating.” Those who have lived with me or count on me for clean laundry may gravitate towards words like “frustrating.” I prefer “creative” or even “inspired.”

IMG_0812By the time I got near the end of the pile, I simply could not live with the guest bed the way it was any more and went off rummaging for fabric, glue gun, and staple gun. I found fabric I had picked up years ago, not ideal for upholstery but OK for this project, on hand, and free. I also found some batting left over from another project and set about upholstering the ugly box spring.


This is not a new box spring and we kind of fell into having it so I didn’t mind experimenting on it. I also knew I wouldn’t be compromising it structurally in anyway so the worst that could happen if I completely botched this experiment was getting glue on the fabric –Nothing the mattress on top and a bed skirt couldn’t hide should things go horribly wrong.


I originally thought that I could just use my staple gun and simply staple my fabric to the top and bottom edge of the box spring. I quickly figured out that the top edge of this particular box spring is only fabric stretched over a wire frame so there was nothing for the staple to hold on to. A slight delay and some Google searches later I decided to use the glue gun to glue the batting and fabric straight to the top of the box spring. The bottom edge was wood so I could still use staples along that side.


I approached gluing the fabric the way I would have approached sewing it on. I cut my strip so that it was wide enough to cover the side of the box spring and give me an inch or two of seam allowance along to the top and bottom edge to fold over and secure. I started with the top edge by laying the strip of fabric on top of the box spring with the raw edge facing the top edge of the side of the box spring. I then worked in sections lifting the fabric and putting glue along the edge of the box spring and pressing the new fabric in place. I worked my way down the edge keeping the fabric pulled taunt as I would if I were upholstering with a staple gun. Once the glue is cooled and the batting is in place this strip of fabric will fold over around the side and be secured on the bottom of the box spring.


I then cut my batting. I cut the batting with very little seam allowance, I wanted it to fold over the edges but only by 1/4 of an inch at most. When I was ready to fold the fabric over the batting I didn’t want the batting to fold back and over itself creating a double layer of batting and a bulky edge that would show through the fabric.


I glued the batting down along the seam. Once secured, I folded the fabric strip laying flat on the box spring over the batting and over the edge of the box spring and smoothed it with my hand to make sure it was straight in preparation to secure it along the bottom edge.


I repeated the process around the three edges of the box spring that would be showing.


On the corners I decided to do a little detail. I took a rectangular piece of fabric and folded the raw edge over and glued it down like you would sew a seem. I then folded that seem over again and glued it down so I had a good edge and glued this “patch” on the corners.


The next steps on this project are to get some furniture feet and add them to the box spring and also to make an upholstered headboard. In the end, this box spring/mattress on the floor look like an upholstered bed. The biggest glitch I need to work out is that the Hubby isn’t a big fan of the fabric I used….I am trying to decide if I go ahead with it since it is free and I wasn’t planning on putting any money towards this project OR do I start over?

Decisions, Decisions.


5 thoughts on “Upholstered Box Spring

  1. Hi. Looks great. My instinct if it were my project would be to move forward with the headboard before revisiting the box spring. It looks clean and crisp. Besides you may come across some amazing fabric for the headboard which is definitely more of a focal point in the room. Cannot wait to see what you do with a headboard!

    1. I was just thinking about this project again. Ted didn’t like the fabric I did the boxspring in so we went and choose a really nice charcoal/navy fabric that looks like wool but its a cotton blend. I am debating between tufted or plain but with a nail head trim boarder around. I am leaning towards the latter. Any leads on affordable trim kits?

      1. Rockland Textiles on Kaladar has all types of upholstery materials. I thought they were reasonably priced but depends on budget I guess. Lee Valley also sells upholstery supplies ( hard stuff such as tools and I think trim kits but they are more expensive). My mom used to buy fancy tacks, metal ones with decorative heads at the hardware store and she used those for nail trim borders. I think they would be perfect for the boxspring. They are pretty resilient and don’t get hammer marks. I would also suggest a rubber mallet but a small metal hammer can do the job as well. Just don’t use the big Mike Holmes framing hammer, it will smash your tacks! I have purchased these tacks in the past at Home Depot and maybe Rona.

      2. Mike Holmes framing hammer! haha. No, probably not the best idea! I found some decorative tacks at Walmart of all places but I would need 1000 little packages to do as many as I was hoping to do around the frame of the headboard. That project may need to take back seat for a little bit as I think about it a bit more and try out those other stores to see if I can get the rolls for a decent price.

      3. Hi Rachel. You can also try Ottawa Textiles on Gladwin Crescent(near St. Laurent). You may also find tack strips online though sometimes it is hard to shop when you cannot physically see them. However you may get a better deal.

        Sent from my iPad

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