In the past forty years, I’ve never encountered a more prolific iron bed than that of the “Pagoda” . It’s name comes from the corner casting that resembles a oriental Pagoda. Coupled with Victorian scrolls, it’s a bed I’ve seen copied by at least half a dozen different foundries. Back in the 1800’s small independent foundries that employed as few as two men, would duplicate the designs of larger more successful foundries, in hopes of selling more . I’ve also seen numerous old catalogs that displayed the same design, yet would try and undercut the price of the more popular foundries. Price wars existed even back then and beds were in the thick of it.
On this particularly popular bed design, it’s always amazed me how different the quality of the castings varies from one foundry to another. The ones that had crisp sharp detailing always denoted a higher calibre foundry. Whereby the beds who’s castings had a more muted detailing, were usually foundries who had duplicated ones from another foundry and didn’t take the time to etch out and detail the molds they took off the bed they’d got from their competitor. In other words they would pour a second and sometimes even third generation casting into a second and sometimes even third generation mold. So beds that went through this process didn’t have the clarity the original designers had on their iron beds.
The photo’s of this particular Pagoda bed are of it in it’s original antique double size, and then after we’d converted it to a king size .
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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