weed prevention for two years: newspaper will prevent any grass/weed seeds from germinating, but unlike fabric, it will decompose after ~ 18 months. By that time, any grass/weed seeds that were present in the soil on planting will be dead.
How to remove paint from hardware. Hot water in old crock pot paint stripping. Soak painted hardware in hot water to loosen many layers of paint and make cleaning much easier. Works on most paints. Not so on finishes like lacquer.
Instead of a headboard, place bookshelves to frame the bed. Add lights for late night reading. This would be great for a guest bedroom. Leave the shelves at the end of the bed empty for the guests to unpack their clothes. or kids room