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This Designer’s New Wall-to-Wall Headboard Is Actually an Optical Illusion

Here’s how she tricked the eye.
dresser in corner of room next to gallery wall

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The first thing you notice in Julie Rose’s bedroom is the mint green wall-to-wall headboard. Or so you think: Peer closer, and you’ll realize that the mattress actually does sit on a regular bed frame—it’s just that the low-slung, inconspicuous IKEA piece purposefully doesn’t  grab your attention. It’s an optical illusion for the design books, and all it required was a can of paint. 

“It was a happy accident!” says Rose, who is the lead designer at Emily Henderson Designs, where she’s revealing the full space this week. “I love how it turned out, because it gives that area visual impact at a low cost.” 

bedroom with green accent wall
Photography by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | Design by Julie Rose

We’ve seen tons of wall-encompassing custom headboards lately, from Brady Tolbert’s channel tufted design to Mandy Moore’s emerald green take. Rose’s is a refreshing (and more affordable!) option for anyone with a backrest that leaves something to be desired. 

bed sitting against a half-painted green wall
Photography by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | Design by Julie Rose

Rose chose Farrow & Ball’s Breakfast Room Green paint specifically to play up her favorite things in the space: an antique school folding chair, a vintage farm gym bench, and a framed art piece of her great-uncle’s old fountain pen nibs. “It speaks to the time gone by from which these items were collected,” she explains. (She coated the baseboards and door in the same color.) To define the hue—and tie the accent wall back to the bed—Rose painted a 1/2-inch-thick black stripe along the top edge. Easily customizable and as low-lift as it gets (even total design rookies can master the look), this project is one every renter should bookmark. 

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