There was a very popular style metal bed back in the 1800’s that has also become a very popular today, with the “Shabby Chic” set. It’s sometimes referred to as an “Art Display Panel” bed. There was even a company, back in the 1800’s, in the Chicago area, called the “Art Bed Co.” Their beds were known for their flat iron panels that had stencils or old decals displaying floral arrangements. I’ve even had some with actual hand painted oil paintings on them. Unfortunately over the past 150 to 200 years, the majority of these iron beds have been painted over numerous times. So it’s quite rare to find one with the original art work intact. They have become very collectible……..especially when the original art work hasn’t been painted over dozens of times, which is usually the case.
Many of my customers that have gotten beds like this from me have had their own art work painted on by artists. One particular client was a world renowned dental surgeon. The bed he got from me had an enormous panel that spanned the entire top of the head and footboard and was approximately a foot in depth. He commissioned a senior college student at UCLA to duplicate a large open pastural scene from an antique print he had in his collection of art. I was fortunate enough to have seen the bed after the art work was completed. He actually had his artist antique the painting so it was in keeping with the antique faux’ “finish” we had applied for him. So once it was done, the art appeared to be equally as old and original to the bed from back in the mid 1800’s. I’m sure it cost him a considerable amount. But the final product was absolutely gorgeous.
Art panel beds…….. if you come across one…….get it. It will be money well spent, or should I say invested.
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