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Repurposing an Antique Piano into a Headboard

September 20, 2010 by
Filed under: Articles, Furniture 

The headboard was re-purposed from a family heirloom piano that was my mother-in-laws and a gift from her father or my wife’s grandfather. It was also the piano my wife (Kay) learned to play. Kay was given the piano after her parents retired and moved to the lake so we’ve been storing the piano for at least 13 years. The soundboard was damaged so we never really considered having it repaired back to working condition. After some discussion and with permission from my wife I disassembled the piano. It has been disassembled for a couple of years but with a promise to re-purpose it into a useful piece of furniture.

I broached the idea of re-purposing it into a headboard for a new queen size bed we purchased for a spare bedroom. Kay thought it sounded like a great idea so I pulled out all the piano pieces and laid them out on the driveway. Then the fun started! After an hour of rearranging and more design collaboration with Kay and Steven Todd, my first attempt at re-purposing began.

The backbone of the headboard is ¾” sheet of plywood. But joints reinforced with screws made the joinery go quickly. Kay insisted that the wood not be refinished. She liked the patina and didn’t care about a few scratches. With assistance from Steven Todd it took about 25 hours to clean the wood with Murphy Oil Soap, design and assembly entire headboard. The piano was attached to the wall with a French cleat.

The headboard was started and completed all during the Labor Day weekend 2010 except for the 8 hours it took to disassembling the piano couple of years ago.

All of the headboard components were made from the original piano parts except for the plywood backbone and the French cleat. As always many thanks to Steven for his strong arms, sharp mind and good design ideas.


6 Responses to “Repurposing an Antique Piano into a Headboard”
  1. [...] piano repurposed into a headboard – now that is some outside of the box thinking!  I love [...]

  2. Marce says:

    I actually gasped when I saw this and said out loud, OMG! I love it. My husband dismantled an old dinosaur of a piano a few years back but did not save it. Threw it in the dumpster. I am so sad. But, I have another. I was going to make a dry bar out of it…now I am rethinking that because of this pic/story. Thanks! I can’t believe I didn’t think of this! Totally awesome!

    • Jay Helland says:

      I’m so glad you like the idea of the piano headboard! I’m really not finisthed with this project. My plan is make the two night stands by cuting the piano bench seat in half or thirds. Raise them up somehow and use recyled marble to make the backs. The marble will be taller than the top shelf and will act as a backsplash to keep items from sliding off.

  3. Phil says:

    I love this idea! In my opinion it is far more attractive than buying something new! Can you please send me a “blueprint” of how you laid it out? I am visual learner. If I can see it on paper then I can do it! Thank you for sharing your masterpiece!

    • Steven Todd says:

      Phil, We didn’t have much of a blueprint when we put this together. Jay called me down to his place and we layed all the parts out on his driveway and moved them around until we found a design that we liked. So it really depends on the piano that you start with. Your piano might have more detail that you want to feature in your headboard.

  4. Donna says:

    This is really creative and beautiful and I want to use my antique piano for the same purpose. What I want to know is how did you DISassemble it? Mine seems like it would take a jackhammer to get it apart. The assembly I can handle, but I can’t figure out how to take this piano apart with tearing it up. Thanks so much!

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