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DIY Vintage Tin Toy Display Case Headboard Project

Tin ToyLooking for a unique way to incorprate vintage tin toys into yur child's bedrrom? Try building this Vintage Tin Toy display case head board.

Using Vintage Tin Toys to decorate is a fun way to incorporate a love of all things vintage into your home.

This Vintage Tin Toy headboard project is perfect for a child's room. You could also make this DIY project as a display case for the wall. Just change the dimensions to fit your needs. This is a relatively involved project and should take the better part of one day to build. If you already have your Vintage Tin Toy collection, this project should cost you about $200 or less. This is a small investment for a unique and stylish piece of furniture that can display your Vintage Tin Toy collection.

To Make a Vintage Tin Toy Display Case Headboard You Will Need:

Shelf from Ikea or a Similar Type Shelf

Piece of Plexi Glass cut to size

Large screws and washers (4)

L Brackets (2)

The key to making this Vintage Tin Toy display casework as a headboard is to find shelves that fit the dimensions of your bed. There are a lot of sources for this type of shelving. Ikea and Target both sell this square cube shelving in a variety of sizes. You will need to check them out on line to plan a head. You can also use two books cases side by side for a king sized bed.

Now, the first step, after purchasing your shelves, it to get your Plexiglas cut to size. I recommend having them cut it at the home improvement store that you buy it at. This is the easiest way to handle this part of the project.

To get started you need to first assemble your shelves. Once you have them put together lay them flat on the ground, front side facing up. Lay your piece of plexi glass on top to make sure it is a good fit. Now, inch each corner of the shelves you will need to make a mark on the plexi glass where you will be screwing through it to attach to the shelves. Just put a mark on it with a black marker.

Now, use a power drill to drill a hole through the plexi glass into the wood-shelving unit. If you are doing this alone I recommend taping the plexi glass in place so that it does not move while you are drilling.

Wipe off any dust or debris form the plexi glass and the shelving.

While your shelving is stable and lying on the ground go ahead and attach one L bracket on each side of the shelf that will be the top of the display case. Stand the shelves up and place them where they will be as the headboard. Screw the remaining hole of your l bracket into the wall.

Place one Vintage Tin Toy in each square opening of the shelf.

Now, get ready to install your plexi glass front. Line your plexi glass up with the front of the shelf. Make sure the hole in the shelf corners match your drilled hole in the plexi glass. Lay your washer over the hole and then insert your screw. I like to use an over sized washer and screw for an industrial look, but that is up to you.

Place your bed in front of the Vintage Tin Toy display case and you have a custom and unique headboard perfect for a whimsical child's bedroom!


Paint the wall area behind the headboard in an accent color. This will really make the Vintage Tin Toys standout. Use contrasting colors for interest.

Have a friend help you with this project if at all possible. The shelving unit for this Vintage Tin Toy display case can be cumbersome to lift and carry.

Tip: The shelf unit recommended for this project is the Expedit Book case from Ikea. It is 72" wide and 72" tall. This makes it perfect for a queen or full sized bed. They also sell it in 31-inch and 58-inch wide versions.
By Ann Siper - Ann Siper is a web writer who has written for online sites such as Demand Studios,, and She writes on a variety of topics, including holidays, health and fitness, ...