How To Make a Bed from a Head & Foot

Easy DIY Tutorial for Adding Rails and Slats to a Bed Head & Foot

Have you ever come across a really lovely (and super affordable) old bed only to pass it up because it was missing its rails and slats?

That’s almost what I did when I was hunting for Riley’s “big boy bed”.

You may have heard this story before…

I stumbled upon an antique cotton reel bed in the deepest, darkest corner of a local antique store behind layers and layers of dusty old rugs.

It was gorgeous and inexpensive and perfect (and a rare find for here in Australia). Only catch was…it wasn’t really a bed at all – just a head and foot!

How to Convert a Bed Head and Foot

Having never converted a basic head and foot into an actual bed before, I had no idea where to start. Though I knew it couldn’t be all that hard.

Fast forward one exchange of money for goods, some car Tetris to transport said goods home, and a few quick Google searches for “bed brackets”, I realised this project was going to be even easier than I thought.


The first thing we did was purchase some planks of wood to form the rails. We chose 10cm (4″) wide x 3cm (1″) deep pine which we cut into 190cm (75″) lengths. This is the length of a standard single (twin/bunk) mattress.


Next, we needed somewhere for the slats to sit. My husband got all fancy here and routed an “L” channel into the actual rails.

DIY Bed Rails and Slats Tutorial

Don’t mind the fact this looks a bit messy. The mattress sits on top so none of this is visible.

The easier option would be to simply screw some sort of slat shelves to the inside of the rails instead. You could use basic timber strips or some metal “L” trim like this…

L Trim for Bed Slats

Note: Before you attach your slat shelves (or route in your “L” channels – if you’re being fancy!), ensure you know the depth of your slats and determine where you’d like your mattress to sit in relation to the rails. Obviously, this will influence where the shelves need to be positioned. As can be seen above, we decided to make our slats flush with the top of the rails so our “L” channels needed to be the same depth as our slats.


To attach the rails to the head and foot we used bed brackets.

Bed Hook Brackets

These are easy to find online, come in a few different styles and sizes and are a cinch to use – though you do need to be careful with your placement to ensure the rails sit nice and straight and neatly abut the head and foot.

Now, I was a bad, bad blogger and didn’t take progress pics of attaching the brackets because, well, I never really planned to write a tutorial about it. You see, I thought this was going to be a relatively boring project that no-one would care less about. Turns out I was wrong. Since mentioning it a month or so back I have received so many questions I thought it deserved its very own post.

So, given my lack of foresightedness, here’s a photo I stole from the internet which clearly shows how the brackets work.

Bed Brackets DIY

Basically, first we attached the male components to the inside of our rails. Then we attached the female components to the head and foot. And then they simply slot together like so…

How to Add Rails to a Bed

Pardon the holes. They were there when I bought it.


With our frame now joined we measured the opening and cut some slats to fit.

DIY Bed Base Slats

We went with 14cm (5″) wide x 2cm (.7″) deep pine. There are six slats in total spaced at around 15cm (5″) intervals which merely rest in place.


Finally, to finish things off, I stained the rails a warm mid-brown to co-ordinate with the existing head and foot.

DIY Bed Base from a Head and Foot

Unfortunately I can’t get the whole bed in one photo. Those of you familiar with my house know the story – tiny rooms, weird angles.

I just mixed up a colour using left-over stains I already had on hand.

So, there you go. For anyone who’s been hesitant about snapping-up a head and foot in the past, or for those of you who may already have something languishing in a deep, dark corner somewhere, I hope this provides some clarity and confidence. As you can see, it’s a relatively quick and simple project.

Now, I know it’s been slow going however things are progressing in Riley’s room. And I’m super excited about the next step which will completely transform the current look…sconce hack and gallery wall here we come!



Catch up on my previous posts about the room makeover here:




More Large-Scale Free Printable Quote Art Signs!

15 Free Printable Large Scale Quote Art Signs

Following the response I received to my original release of free printable quote art it seemed only natural that I should share some more!

I was totally inundated with new quote suggestions (thanks everyone!) and, though it wasn’t easy, I’ve finally managed to narrow things down.

I have selected quotes which were requested numerous times and today I’m offering 15 printables in total – five different quotes in three different colourways!

15 Amazing FREE Printable Quote Art Signs

As always, each image has been fully optimised for print and, for your convenience, designed in 2:3 ratio to fit standard frames.


Due to the size of these files I am hosting them on Google Drive. You will be redirected there to complete the download process. 
Files are saved in zipped folders. Depending on your operating system they may need to be extracted prior to viewing. Due to their large size, some mobile devices may fail to load them.

As mentioned in my previous quote art post (refer to the ‘note’ toward the end of the article), I have chosen to amend the format of these signs slightly so they do differ marginally from those I originally shared. This is to ensure they somewhat vary from those being offered by other artists as I would hate to knowingly replicate the work of a fellow creative.

I’ve spoken about printing and framing options in my previous quote art posts though for anyone new here I thought I’d share the information again…


You can have these signs printed at any store which offers a good-quality, large-format printing service. Prices for a 60cm/24″ x 90cm/36″, full-colour print on poster paper generally range between $20 – $40. Black and white engineering prints on bond paper can be as inexpensive as $5. If you’re unsure where to start looking, try Googling “print and copy services”. Otherwise, some stores include; Officeworks, Vista Print, Staples, Office Depot, Costco, Walmart. Along with having your image printed in-store, many companies also offer an online upload service. This can be handy if you live in a remote area or simply want the convenience of shopping from home. I have some basic instructions for ordering online from three different companies here.


For ease, I have designed these signs in 2:3 ratio to fit standard poster frames. You can find large 60cm/24″ x 90cm/36″ frames in lots of places with prices generally starting from around $15. If you’re unsure where to start looking, try Googling “poster frames”. Otherwise, visit dollar and discount stores, affordable department and homewares stores or Ikea. For a more authentic sign look, I recommend removing the glass/perspex from your frame and affixing the print directly to the backing board using spray adhesive. If you would prefer to DIY your own farmhouse style frame, you can find my basic tutorial here.

FREE Downloadable Quote Art

The Mother Teresa quote was the most desired. I think I received around 40 requests for that one!

I plan to share more quote art over the coming months and will be sure to keep referring back to any previously suggested quotes. So, if your suggestion wasn’t featured this time around it may still be used in the future. And, if you’re yet to recommend a quote, please share it in the comments below.

If you’d like to save this post for later, feel free to pin the image below.

Amazing Large Scale Free Printable Quote Art




If you’re after something custom, I also offer a very affordable bespoke service. You can order a personalised quote art sign through my little shop here.

Or, find my other FREE printable quote art by clicking a pic below…

Free Printable Book Page Quote Art   Free Downloadable Quote Art Signs

Free for personal non-commercial use only.



Easy DIY Vintage Style Canvas “Paintings”

I know many of you have been waiting for this landscape art tutorial since seeing the canvas ‘painting’ I shared a few weeks back…

Easy DIY Canvas Art - No Painting Required!

This was one of those projects I’ve been meaning to try for years.

I think quite a few of you thought I had painted it myself and that I had some kind of ‘instant-artist’ trick to share. Truth is, whilst I do enjoy drawing and painting, I struggle to find the time nowadays so this was merely a cheat that anyone can try with ease.

I originally saw this basic idea on one of those kids’ art shows (obviously, with not quite so sophisticated an outcome!) however the general concept got my brain cogs turning.

So, when finding lovely and affordable landscape art for Riley’s bedroom gallery turned out to be much harder than I had first thought, it seemed the perfect excuse to give this project a go.

And, I could not be happier with how it turned out!

Of course, there’s no real substitute for genuine art – and I’m not trying to imply this is comparable – though it is a fun, easy and affordable little DIY that can look great.


DIY Oil Landscape Art Supplies

You can use whatever you like as long as it’s the right approximate size and isn’t copyright protected.

There are heaps of free public domain images available online. Just have a search around and make sure that whatever you choose is large enough for printing purposes (you can read a bit more about how graphic size effects printing here).

Although I’ve used a landscape, any subject matter would work – portraits would be cool!

Some good resources for landscape art include FlickrWiki Art and several of the sites I have listed in my Free Printables Directory, among many, many, many more!

For this tutorial I have used an antique landscape painting which I found here. The graphic I used for my original canvas (as shown at the very top of the post) can be found here.

You can use an inkjet or laser printer. I just used my domestic inkjet printer.

Tissue paper is used in place of regular paper as it creates a really lovely vintage look and allows the canvas texture to show through. I used a large sheet of tissue paper which I simply cut down.

I just used regular painter’s tape.

I used a small 20cm x 30cm/8″x 12″ canvas I found at a local dollar store for just $3.

You can use any glue suitable for paper. I used Mod Podge because that’s what I had in the cupboard.

Regular medium grit sandpaper is fine.



STEP 1 Size your graphic to fit your canvas

I used Photoshop to size my graphic though you can use any image editing/desktop publishing program you like. GIMP is a great free alternative to Photoshop and you can find my full tutorial for sizing images using both Photoshop and GIMP here.

For the purpose of this tutorial I’m using a canvas which is slightly larger than a standard A4/letter sized sheet of paper so I can demonstrate how to separate the graphic for printing (assuming most people have a standard A4/letter sized printer at home) and how to connect it again when attaching it to the canvas.

Of course, if you have a large format printer or a canvas smaller than a standard A4/letter sized sheet of paper then you won’t need to worry about separating your graphic.

To begin I created a document slightly larger (by around 5cm/2″) than the face of my canvas, pasted my graphic on top then re-scaled it to fit nicely.

DIY Canvas Landscape Art

Note: For best results you want your graphic to cover the face of your canvas only, with a smidgen of overhang. I tried fully wrapping the sides of the canvas though thought it made the painting look fake.

Next, I created a new document at A4/letter size and pasted the re-sized graphic on top. Of course, the graphic was too large so I cut a section off then re-positioned the remaining graphic centrally in the document before saving it.

DIY Canvas Landscape Artwork

Tip: I deliberately didn’t cut my graphic right in the center so if there was a visible join line it would be slightly off-set and less obvious.

Finally, I deleted the existing portion of the graphic, pasted in the section I had previously cut off and centered it on the document before saving it.

DIY Canvas Art

What I’m left with are two A4/letter sized documents, each containing a different segment of the graphic which, when combined, will make up one complete image.

DIY Landscape Art Painting


STEP 2 Print your graphic

Cut your tissue paper to around the same size as your printer paper then tack both sheets together using masking tape. I find it works best to trim the tissue paper slightly smaller than the printer paper so that it can be securely tacked to the front of the paper. Obviously, just ensure it is still large enough for your graphic.

How to Print onto Tissue Paper

Tip: Ensure the tissue paper is as smooth and taut as possible to avoid ink smudges caused by movement.

Print your graphic onto the tissue paper.

Printing onto Tissue Paper

Trim neatly around the printed image.

Trimming Around the Tissue Paper Print

Repeat with the second half of the graphic. You will have two segments of tissue paper which, once combined, will make up your image.

Tissue Paper Prints


STEP 3 Attach your print to the canvas

DIY Canvas Art Prints

There are two ways you can go about this. Both have their pros and cons…

A) This is the “eye” method. Apply some diluted glue to your canvas then simply eye the placement of your prints. This is quick though can also be tricky and imprecise. The tissue paper is quite flimsy so tends to bow and wave and once you hit the glue it’s really difficult to re-position the paper if you happen to be off-center or crooked as it deteriorates quickly on contact with moisture.

B) This is the “dry run” method. Lay your prints in place on the canvas and hold them in position with some light weights (you can use anything which isn’t overly large and will keep the paper in place). Lift one edge of a print then coat the canvas beneath with some diluted glue before pressing the tissue paper back down. Remove the weight and adhere the remaining portion of the print. Repeat with the second portion of the image. This method is a tad more lengthy though affords greater precision.

Either way, attaching the prints is a somewhat messy and fiddly process. You just need to play around until you get a good feel for it…and you can not expect or aim for perfection! There will inevitably be some creases and bubbles, some rips and tears and probably some ink run. Simply press down any creases and bubbles with your fingers until they ‘meld’ into the canvas and try to embrace imperfections as enhancing the vintage feel of the artwork. I love them!

Note: I tried using both neat and diluted glue. I found that a ratio of around 70 glue/30 water worked well. Neat glue can cause extra creases and is just harder to work with in general. Watery glue can over-saturate things causing the paper to tear easily and the ink to smear which adversely effects the crispness of the print.

Once the print is fully attached to the face of the canvas, fold down any over-hang and adhere it to the sides of the canvas. Don’t worry about the obvious line where the print ends. We’ll deal with that in the following step.

DIY Canvas Art

Note: You could try lightly spraying your tissue paper prints with some clear sealer prior to attaching them to the canvas. This should help seal the ink and prevent the possibility of excess smearing.


STEP 4 Sand the edges

Once the glue is completely dry, sand the edges of the canvas to soften any obvious lines where the print ends and to create the impression of some wear.

Sanding the Canvas

If you find it difficult you can dampen the tissue paper with some water. Don’t worry about leaving remnants of the print behind – you actually want some residue to provide a bit of character (genuine paintings on canvas often have paint around the edges).

You can sand as lightly or heavily as you like. I even chose to distress the corners of the canvas fabric itself.

DIY Vintage Style Canvas

Doesn’t it look like a genuine old painting?

I know this worn style isn’t for everyone though I’m sure those of us who find it appealing can appreciate it.

You may even want to sand some areas of the face of the canvas to create an even more aged feel.


STEP 5 Done!

DIY Canvas Art Paintings Tutorial

I am SO in love with the way this turned out!

Here are close-ups of the actual finished pieces…

DIY Canvas Art

Landscape DIY Painting

The resulting artworks are quaint, and charming, and unpretentious, and just feel good. And they cost under $10 each!

I especially love the way the canvas texture peeks through the tissue paper.

DIY Canvas Art Texture

I tried to get a shot of the join though it’s so inconspicuous you can barely make it out.

Painting Join

Of course, this project is not intended to produce flawless looking results. There will likely be some wrinkles in the tissue paper, little white canvas patches here and there, perhaps some black printer ink residue, and, of course, a join line where the prints meet. Remember, these “faults” are all intentional, working together to bolster the vintage feel this technique is designed to produce. I like to imagine these canvases have been stored in an artist’s shed for years and years, their imperfections a testament to their old age.

I hope you like them and it helps inspire you. I know I’m feeling slightly addicted!



Affordable and Easy Antique Style "Paintings" Tutorial

DIY Book Holders Repurposed from Drawer Organisers

Bookshelves Made From Drawer Dividers

Around the same time I was designing the floating bookshelves for behind Charlotte’s bedroom door, I happened to notice some drawer tidies in Kmart.

Drawer Tidy

“You know what?” I remarked to my mum, who was shopping with me that day, “These would be good re-purposed as little bookshelves.”

It’s funny how you think when you’re in the midst of a project. Things you mightn’t normally notice and ideas you ordinarily wouldn’t consider seem to jump out at you.

Anyhoo, the drawer tidies were much too deep and short to be used behind Charlotte’s door so I abandoned the idea…for the time being.

Fast forward four years (yes people, four years) and I finally had the perfect use for them!

Repurposed Drawer Tidys into Wall Bookshelves

Thankfully Kmart were still selling them because it’s almost like they were made for the side of Riley’s dresser.

As I’ve previously mentioned, Riley’s room is pretty teeny so I need to make the most of all the little spaces available – blank furniture surfaces included!

This was such a quick, easy and affordable little project. There are heaps of different items you could repurpose in this way (I know the Ikea spice racks are popular) and tonnes of ways you could go about personalising them. I decided to keep things simple.

Spray Painting the Bookshelves

First I lightly sanded the tidies then spray painted them white all over.

Painting Stripes

Next I used some painters tape and acrylic craft paint to add a simple green stripe to each tidy, just to dress them up a little.

Distressing the Paint

At this stage I felt they were looking a little too perfect so I lightly distressed the paint.

Using Dark Wax

The white still seemed a bit too stark so I decided to apply some dark wax to give it some warmth and a more grungy edge. Before using the dark wax I sanded again in a more haphazard manner to create random scratches for the dark wax to highlight.

Command Strips

Finally, to attach the tidies to the dresser I used Command strips (obviously I didn’t want to drill or nail into Riley’s beautiful antique dresser!). I used two large strips per tidy, wiping both contact surfaces with isopropyl alcohol first to ensure good adhesion and a nice, strong bond.


DIY Bookshelves from Drawer Tidys

Like I already mentioned, they are just perfect and have the capacity to hold a heap of books if need be. Although I’ve attached them to the side of a piece of furniture, they could just as easily be mounted on a wall and are a great solution if you’re short on space – like me!

Repurposed Drawer Tidys into Wall Bookshelves

I know many of you are hanging out for the DIY landscape art tutorial and I promise that will be my very next post.

DIY Bookshelves for the Side of Furniture or Walls


If you’d like to save this project for later, you can pin it using the below image.

DIY Bookshelves for the Side of Furniture or Walls

Another Over-Size Bird Free Printable

A few days ago I received an email from a reader.

She was after a large-scale bird printable to partner the Heron I currently offer…

Free Printable Large-Scale Bird Art | The Painted Hive

I do already provide a second bird to compliment the Heron (a Crane, from the same book by the same artist, which co-ordinates quite nicely)…

Crane Free Printable

Large Scale Free Printables Birds

…however she was after something a little more alike and had already managed to find an illustration of a very similar bird.

Only problem was, it was merely in the form of a screenshot from Google…

So, I got researching and after a little while managed to find the exact same illustration as a free large-scale download. Yay!

Given it compliments the original Heron I offered so well, I thought it would be nice to share it here as a free printable for everyone to download and enjoy.

As always, I have edited and fully optimised the image for print and re-sized it to fit standard large poster frames (60cm x 90cm/24″ x 36″). Download it via the buttons below.

Free Printable Large Scale Bird Art

Download Heron Officeworks

Download Office Depot

Download Costco

For your convenience, I’m offering three slightly different files in order to meet the upload requirements of three different online printing services; Officeworks (Australia), Office Depot (USA) and Costco (Canada).

If you intend to use an alternate printing service, I would suggest using the “Office Depot” image. Just ensure the particular document set-up specifications of the printing company you choose are met.

For complete printing instructions and further information about framing the artwork refer to my original Heron post here.

I hope you like it and find it useful.

Free Printable Large Scale Heron Art




PS I’ve been working away on a new series of free quote art and hope to share that soon too!

Find my original free printable Heron and Crane artwork by clicking the below images.

Free Printable Large Scale Bird Art Heron    Free Printable Large Scale Crane Bird Art


Free for personal, non-commercial use only.
Republication, reproduction or redistribution in any form is forbidden.