Use your own material on a headboard

At The Headboard Workshop, we accept Customer’s Own Fabric (COM) for upholstering onto a headboard.

Here is a handy guide all about how to order a headboard in your own material, how much material to send us, where to send it and how.

We also cover fire retardancy aspects, suitable fabrics and questions you might be asked  by our team about how you’d like the material used on your headboard or bed.

How much material should I send for my new headboard?

Every size and style of headboard requires a different quantity of material.

We include a model specific fabric requirement on each and every headboard and bed on our website for easy reference.

To find the amount you’ll need, first navigate to the size and style of headboard you’d like to purchase.

You’ll find on that page a banner that looks like this near to the images of the product:

If you click on the + sign of the blue bar entitled Customer’s Own Material, it will open out to give the information for that model, like so:

The text that is visible when you do this will also ask for extra material if:

  • You have a directional fabric (patterned) –  we will need one or more extra ‘pattern repeats’ depending on the model.
  • You wish to have a pillowstop – extra material is needed for this.
  • You wish to supply a different colour material for contrast piping (on piped models only)

So, what do all these things mean?

What is a pattern repeat?

When material is printed, it is printed with a pattern repeat along the length of the roll.  The vertical pattern repeat relates to the distance between where the pattern starts, ends and appears again.

If your chosen material has a pattern repeat of 4 cm, for example, and we ask for 1 extra pattern repeat, we would need an extra 4 cm to be able to join the patterns correctly.

Similarly, if your pattern repeat is 68 cm and 1 extra pattern repeat is needed, we would need an extra 68 cm.

On a bed, we may need up to 5 pattern repeats and therefore, a fabric with a large pattern repeat can work out to be an expensive and wasteful choice.

What is a ‘directional pattern’?

A directional pattern has a clear top and a bottom to it.  A good example of this is a tree pattern – you would normally always want for the tree to be upright on your headboard.  If we were to use the fabric on its side to avoid joins/seams then your trees would be sideways – hardly ideal!

A good example of a non directional pattern may be a dot or spot that has no clear top or bottom and so the fabric could easily be run sideways to avoid joins.

Extra care should be taken when considering stripes.  A striped pattern could be run directionally OR from side to side and you’ll be asked to confirm which way you intend stripe to run.

We will contact you when we receive your material at our workshop to confirm your pattern direction for fabrics which could be run both ways to ask your preference.

My headboard will be wider than my material – how will that work?

Upholstery fabric is usually around 145 cm wide (usable width).  In many cases, this means the front of your headboard exceeds the width of the material and so your fabric will need to be joined to make it wide enough to cover the headboard.

This does mean that there will be seams visible on the front of your headboard if your material has a directional pattern.

If you are sending a plain fabric that can be used on its side, no joins will be seen on the front face of your headboard.

We ask for one extra pattern repeat so that our seamstress can perfectly align the edges of material to match the pattern across the panels.

For some styles of headboard, there may be no requirement to have joins – Our Taransay, Tiree, and Skye headboards incorporate panels into their designs without joins.  Deep buttoned models like our Iona, Easdale and Tean are made so that the joins in the material are hidden within the pleats that form around the buttoning.

Can I have a patterned fabric but run it on it’s side?

You can decide which way you want your pattern to run.

Some patterns do not have a definitive top or bottom to them, so, the choice is yours alone.

We do not recommend using a pattern that has a very definite top and bottom in the wrong orientation.

Some fabrics are printed as ‘railroaded’.  This means that the pattern is turned on the fabric through 90 degrees so that the usual sides of the fabric (the selvedge) becomes the top and bottom.

Where/how should I send my material to you?

Before you send us your material, please help us by putting your order on.  This is important because it generates a unique six digit code for your order which we use as an identifier.  We ask that this number accompanies your material to our workshop either on the material itself (post it note or sticky label) or on the outside of your package.

It helps us enormously if you can also:

  • Attach your name.
  • Attach your order reference number, which you will receive via email after placing your order.
  • Indicate the correct side of the fabric.

And finally, the address you need to send your fabric to is;

The Headboard Workshop Ltd,
Units 10-11 St David’s Industrial Estate,
NP12 3SW.

Will you confirm you have received my fabric?

Yes, we will.  We will also return any left over material to you with your headboard delivery if there is any.

Can I ask my fabric supplier to send my material to you directly on my behalf?

Yes.  This is fine and happens all the time.  Please do ensure that your fabric supplier is happy to label the material package with your surname and order number as above, and includes any fire rating certificates as appropriate.

What do I need to tell you about my material?

If you wish to chat with us about the suitability of your material or have any queries about the quantity needed, we may ask you the following in order to help you:

  • The size and model of headboard that you are considering
  • The maker, brand, pattern name and colourway of the material
  • The material composition (for fire retardancy purposes)
  • The material width
  • The vertical pattern repeat (of patterned)

Better still, if you can provide us with a website link to your chosen fabric, we are very happy to have a look.  We can then tell you exactly how much you will need to send us.

Will my material need Fire retardant treatment?

Can an FR interliner be used with my material?

There are a few things we must do, by law, to ensure your safety to comply with current fire safety legislation.

A headboard, just like a sofa, is a fixed upholstered item.  Therefore, certain steps must be taken to find out what your fabric’s composition is prior to transforming it into something beautiful.

Some fabrics for upholstery can be ordered pre-treated or bought as a ‘Fire retardant’ (FR) version.  This is always preferable, and, we will ask you to send us a copy of the accompanying certificate before manufacture.

However, this is not always possible and so here is a brief explanation of the different treatments that may need consideration depending on which fabric you choose to send us.

Inherently Fire Proof Fabrics

Virgin wool is fire retardant by nature.  100% wool fabric does not need treatment to make it comply.  Good news if you are a sheep!

Flame proofing options.

Usually, there are two ways to deal with this issue for headboards being used in a domestic environment (your own home).  Both depend very much on what your material is made of.

Interliner/barrier cloth

If your fabric is made of more than 75% natural fibres (cotton, linen, viscose etc) then we can use an interliner between your fabric and the headboard to make it comply.  Interliner charges vary by size of headboard from £59 to £89.  We can use a barrier cloth on your bed too in this situation at a cost of £99.

Back coating

If your fabric is made of less than 75% natural fibres then it will need specialist treatment to make it flame proof.

This need not be a daunting procedure – we can handle it for you.  We use a trusted third party to do this for us.  The process is called back coating.  The back of your fabric is passed over a bath of fire proofing solution and is dried.  The treatment plant then returns it to us along with the certificates needed and we can then start work.  Usually, back coating can add 10 to 14 days to our lead time.  Fire proofing treatment costs £15 per metre of fabric plus a £30.00 administration fee.  This covers shipping to the treatment centre and your fabric’s return to us.

Remember, it is the law.  Your safety is paramount to us and together with the certification provided, gives peace of mind.  If you’re not sure what the composition of your fabric is, we will often ask for it to be back coated.  This is in order to make absolutely certain you are safe and that we are compliant.

How we will contact you

If we need any guidance or information about your fabric, or if we need to ask you to sign off on whichever option is relevant to your material, we will email or call you to discuss it with you when we receive your fabric and it has been assessed by our workshop team.

We will then proceed with whichever course of action needs to be taken in order to satisfy our responsibility for your safety.

For commercial premises

If you are buying headboards for a commercial property – a hotel or similar, then the laws are more stringent, and your fabric must meet Crib 5 standard.

We carry Crib 5 interliners at our workshop and we can give you free, friendly advice to help you.  Please contact us for more information.

And finally, if you’d like to select one of our fabrics, you can rest assured you are buying with confidence.  The fabrics offered on our website are already FR treated.

Take a look at our fabric samples and order some.  Likewise, please do contact us to discuss a wider range of colours and textures of fabrics than we currently run on our site.  We have a brilliant selection of materials suited to commercial and trade projects as well as for domestic usage.