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Antique Beds

Antique beds make a dramatic statement in modern homes. From luxurious Louis XVI designs to classic iron beds, this furniture features artisan craftsmanship that is virtually non-existent in the 21st century.

Most antique beds available today were built in the 19th and early 20th centuries. They are crafted from hardwoods such as burl walnut, oak, and cherry, and often feature tall headboards with ornate carving and woodworking.

Tester beds, which included a solid panel above the bed held by four tall posts, accommodated curtains and elaborate fabric drapes that were common in the 18th and 19th centuries. Until the 19th century, most beds were located in the parlor, so drapes were used to add privacy and warmth. Homeowners often hired decorators to design the bed dressings that expressed their social status.

Wooden beds were first manufactured in the late 19th century, leading to fewer intricate details. Iron and brass beds also became popular during this time. Iron workers casted each bed individually, polished the castings and then hand-applied the finish.


Quick Facts

  • The production of iron beds stopped during World War I so that the iron could be redirected toward the war effort
  • Renaissance beds feature holes in the frame to hold ropes that made up the bed’s platform
  • The Great Bed of Ware, built in 1580 and housed today in the Victoria and Albert Museum, could easily sleep 15 people

Recommended Items at Auction

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Antique walnut cradle
May 30, 10:00 AM EDT
Antique walnut cradle
by Barry S. Slosberg Inc
Est: $75- $150
$250 Bids
ANTIQUE RARE DESIGNER ITALIAN BED
May 29, 11:00 AM EDT
ANTIQUE RARE DESIGNER ITALIAN BED
by Intervendue
Est: $17,000- $20,000
$2,2000 Bids
French Gothic Revival Iron Bed
Jun 06, 12:00 PM EDT
French Gothic Revival Iron Bed
by Akiba Galleries
Est: $200- $2,000
$1000 Bids
A cast iron daybed,
Jun 12, 10:00 AM BST
A cast iron daybed,
by Sworders
Est: £300- £500
£2400 Bids
EARLY 19TH C. PA PAINT DECORATED BED.
May 29, 10:00 AM EDT
EARLY 19TH C. PA PAINT DECORATED BED.
by William Smith Auctions
Est: $3,000- $5,000
$1,5000 Bids
PAIR OF CARVED MAHOGANY TWIN BEDS
May 29, 11:00 AM EDT
PAIR OF CARVED MAHOGANY TWIN BEDS
by Gray's Auctioneers
Est: $800- $1,200
$4000 Bids
A four-poster field bed
Jun 03, 6:00 PM WEST
A four-poster field bed
by Cabral Moncada Leilões
Est: €2,000- €3,000
€2,0000 Bids
19th Century American Victorian Carved Walnut Bed
Jun 22, 10:00 AM EDT
19th Century American Victorian Carved Walnut Bed
by Premier Auction Galleries
Est: $100- $200
$250 Bids
A Charles IV of Spain polychrome-painted carved headboard, late 18th - early 19th Century
May 30, 6:00 PM CEST
A Charles IV of Spain polychrome-painted carved headboard, late 18th - early 19th Century
by Greco Subastas
Est: €500- €700
€5000 Bids
French Napoleon III cast iron daybed or child's bed
Jun 01, 10:00 AM EDT
French Napoleon III cast iron daybed or child's bed
by King Galleries
Est: $600- $800
$4000 Bids
Ah Tay Matrimonial Tester Bed
Jun 08, 2:00 PM PST
Ah Tay Matrimonial Tester Bed
by Leon Gallery
Est: ₱800,000- ₱1,040,000
₱800,0000 Bids
Gustav Stickley, Rare and Early Bungalow crib settle, model 173 variant
Jun 04, 11:00 AM CDT
Gustav Stickley, Rare and Early Bungalow crib settle, model 173 variant
by Toomey & Co. Auctioneers
Est: $10,000- $15,000
$6,5000 Bids
LETTO Spagna, seconda metà del XIX secolo - Bed Spain, second half of 19th Century
Jun 12, 10:00 AM CEST
LETTO Spagna, seconda metà del XIX secolo - Bed Spain, second half of 19th Century
by Aste Bolaffi
Est: €250- €300
€2000 Bids
A FRENCH MAHOGANY LIT-EN-BATEAU BED, MID 19TH CENTURY
Jun 13, 10:30 AM BST
A FRENCH MAHOGANY LIT-EN-BATEAU BED, MID 19TH CENTURY
by Dreweatts 1759 Fine Sales
Est: £400- £600
£2000 Bids
Antique Jenny Lind Hired Mans Bed
May 29, 10:00 AM CDT
Antique Jenny Lind Hired Mans Bed
by Cedarburg Auction & Appraisals LLC
Est: $75- $100
$250 Bids
FRENCH EMPIRE STYLE GILT-METAL MOUNTED MAHOGANY ALCOVE BED
Jun 08, 10:00 AM CDT
FRENCH EMPIRE STYLE GILT-METAL MOUNTED MAHOGANY ALCOVE BED
by Austin Auction Gallery
Est: $600- $800
$4000 Bids
A French Empire gilt-brass mahogany bed with front columns, early 19th Century
May 30, 6:00 PM CEST
A French Empire gilt-brass mahogany bed with front columns, early 19th Century
by Greco Subastas
Est: €350- €500
€3500 Bids
ANTIQUE RENAISSANCE VICTORIAN FULL SIZE BED
May 29, 11:00 AM EDT
ANTIQUE RENAISSANCE VICTORIAN FULL SIZE BED
by Intervendue
Est: $3,900- $6,000
$5000 Bids
Antique Brass Cannon Ball Top Classical Bed
May 30, 10:00 AM EDT
Antique Brass Cannon Ball Top Classical Bed
by Nye & Company
Est: $40- $60
$200 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Antique Beds


Nye & Company

Nye & Company

Akiba Galleries

Akiba Galleries

Cabral Moncada Leilões

Cabral Moncada Leilões

King Galleries

King Galleries