So why, you ask, would anyone in there right mind paint an antique iron bed “barn red”. Over the years of dealing in iron beds I’ve come across “hundreds” of them that had been painted a very distinctive “barn red”. But then I’ve also come across a number or iron beds that were painted white, or painted forest green or dark blue.
I once asked an old farmer why a antique iron bed I bought from him, up in the back woods of Pennsylvania, had been red like his barn. He looked at me like I had a third eye in the middle of my head. “Son” he said……..”every few years or so we paint the barn……so it just makes common sense, we might as well put a fresh coat of paint of the iron beds, before we clean the brushes”. He said..”You’ll notice some of the other beds you got from me had a couple of coats of white and a couple coats of green……Well that’s when we painted the house”.
So it was more a practical tradition to paint everything that could use a coat of paint while you were in the mode of upgrading with a coating of paint. That’s why so many of the antique iron beds you’ll see have multiple layers of paint. Although the multiple layers can sometimes look quite pretty in a distressed way, those multiple layers fill in an mute the definition of the castings.
The best place to start in trying to retrieve the definition of a casting on an antique iron bed is by sandblasting off all those layers of paint. Antique iron beds can handle any industrial shot blasting or traditional sandblasting. The tubing and especially the castings can be brought back to the way the were the day they were built, close to 200 years ago, by simple sanblasting.
So if you find an antique iron bed with every color of the rainbow……….. just try and imagine what the original owners home must have looked like.
I hope you’ve found this blog informative . I invite you to revisit my website
to answer any and all questions you might have about antique iron beds.
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