Finding that special old headboard can be troublesome when the headboard does not match the frame. But you can do this. It's quite simple.
For years, I had been searching for the headboard of my dreams - an old or faux antique steel headboard like you see in hospital wards in old movies. Not that I was actually going for that 1925 hospital ward look.
The obstacles were finding a headboard that fit below the the slanted attic walls of my bedroom, and finding a headboard on the cheap. Twenty-five dollars at Good Will worked for me. Stupidly, I did not bring home the footboard and side frames that would have held the whole thing together. I just don't like footboards. They get in the way when you make the bed and interrupt the little space we have. Plus, you can't sit on the bottom of the bed. But it would have made so much more sense!
The headboard was originally white with smears of red fingernail polish. I sanded it and spray painted it satin black. Two cans of spray paint left me with a little bit for future touch-ups.
I had the idea of just attaching the headboard to the wall but my husband did not go for that idea. He simply bought a titanium drill bit and drilled holes through the 2 perpendicular metal pieces of the frame and headboard as you can see in the picture on the right.
It all seemed a bit wobbly so he attached the bottom horizontal bar of the headboard to the bed frame with glavanized tab tape, available in the plumbing section of your local hardware store. The tape stabilized the headboard.
Now I have the bed of my dreams. I covered two pillows with old grain sacks to add to the rustic romance of the bedroom.