Cottage comforts and Country charm….

English Country Cottage

English Country Cottage

The image of the quintessential English country cottage is both endearing and enduring.

Whilst the stereotype pictured postcard village scene is often overplayed, few would deny the nostalgic appeal that our little rural communities evoke. In such settings the traditional cottage bedroom and the furniture therein is invariably comfortable and welcoming in keeping with the theme.

The rich textures and deep patinas of natural wooden beds are a natural partnership with the shabby chic of many old cottages and country homes as are traditional forged metal and polished or antique brass bedsteads. Indeed, since their rise to popularity at the end of the 19th century, these well-loved designs have enjoyed endless appeal.

Cast metal bedsteads in traditional styles particularly suit country schemes as their clean and inviting lines contrast with the quirky irregular contours and oak beams of old buildings. From its early peasant roots, the country bed was, of necessity, truly simple and modest.

Early wooden beds would have supported a functional Hessian sacking base or rows of tightly strung ropes or leather straps that supported a basic and invariably, uncomfortable mattress. Once iron and brass bedsteads became widespread and affordable within the more prosperous country home, they became popular for use for the serving staff in Spartan attic bedrooms.

The designs lacked decoration and embellishments and were accordingly very easy to maintain and keep clean as well as being largely free from the scourge of the bed bug, which had plagued previous generations!

Metal bedsteads, by their very nature, often have an easy simplicity that suits the utilitarian virtues of country living. Accordingly, simple wooden beds were often painted to disguise their uneven surfaces and to add a little cheer to the sometimes, dour rooms where they might have been used.

In fact, painted bed frames are particularly evocative of country style, particularly when decorated in soft putty colours such as pale blue, grey or buttermilk. Even today, the most ordinary of bed frames can be transformed into an enticing decorative statement with a coat of paint and a little imagination.

And in either wood or metal, even the simplest and most ordinary of bed styles, lend themselves superbly to the huge variety of quilts, blankets and throws associated with timeless country chic.

Never is this more true than with the evergreen appeal of the brass bedstead that has become synonymous with country decorating.

Then and now, it somehow evokes a certain Victorian austerity that works in subtle harmony with simply furnished country homes. Softened with linens atop crisp cotton sheets there is undoubted appeal and a flavour of romance. Those true antique originals and the inspired antique brass reproductions available today, allow us all to recreate a bedroom theme that evokes a special period in rural English history.

Minimalist shabbiness might be all in vogue, but for village living it is just one of several themes and decorative perspectives that can work with fabulous results.

Ardmore Iron and Brass Bed - Original Bedstead

Ardmore Iron and Brass Bed - Original Bedstead


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