UNDER CONSTRUCTION

Illustrated FURNITURE Glossary

Beds - Styles

Beds - Construction
All illustrations are from furniture in Buffalo, NY, unless otherwise indicated.

 

Bandy legs

Legs bowed or bent in an outward curve

 

Bed-hangings

Curtains hanging from rods

often used in conjunction with a valance.

 

Bedstead

The frame supporting a bed

 

Canopy

A covering, usually of cloth, suspended over a bed

Often arched: 2 curved rods reinforced by narrow stretchers

 

Field top

The tester is cut in a serpentine curve from head to foot

 

Foot board

An upright board across the foot of a bedstead

 

Head board

A board or panel that forms the head of a bed

 

Ornamentation:

Acanthus leaf

Acorn finial

Cabriole leg

Claw-and-ball feet

Finial

Fluted bedpost

Pineapple

Reeded bedpost

Rail

The horizontal strip of a frame or a panel. The horizontal tie bar joining the stiles/posts

Slat

Narrow band of wood,used to support mattresses

Stile / Post / Bedpost

A vertical structural unit

 

Tester
(pronounced TES ter, or TEE ster)

A canopy

Sometimes domed

Three-Quarter High-Post Bed

"Is without
tester and all posts are alike. They measure from four feet six inches to five feet eight inches tall and are either vase-and-ring turned, terminating in ball, urn or cone-shape finials, or acanthus-leaf carved and terminate in urn or pineapple-carved finials.

"Below rails they are turned in vase shape, are either plain or leaf-carved and terminate in small peg feet.

"Headboard, 16 to 20 inches high, has either a straight upper edge with voluted ends or a carved and pierced cresting. Matching footboard may be present.

"Rails are generally 26 to 28 inches from floor.

"Made in all sections [of the country] of mahogany, maple, cherry or birch. Ca. 1820-1840."

- Thomas H. Ormsbee, Field Guide to American Victorian Furniture, 1951

 

Valance
(pronounced VAIL ans, or VAY lens)

An ornamental drapery hung across a top edge of a bed or canopy


Photos and their arrangement 2005 Chuck LaChiusa
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