Saturday, May 12, 2012

Napping in the Garden on an Antique French Daybed!

Close your eyes and imagine.........a beautiful day, a glass of iced tea, a great book, a nice mattress and fluffy pillows and drifting off to sleep for a little afternoon nap on this wonderful old French daybed.

I know it may seem a bit unusual but it's quite common for a French household to have at least one of these fanciful French daybeds, sometimes even one inside and one outside. The French B&B in which I stayed last spring had one of these on their outdoor patio.

This very decorative French folding iron day bed dates from around 1900 and was purchased at an antiques village in Southern France. It has beautifully curved ironwork and two heavy, ornate cast iron plaques on either side of the bed.

Iron daybeds originated in France in the late 17th century when casting iron become more common and blacksmith techniques became more sophisticated. Metal daybed designs varied but the style referred to as the "campaign" bed became popular due to its portability and durability and was frequently used by the military beginning in the Napoleon III period. These innovative campaign beds kept the user off of the ground when resting and could then be folded flat and moved on to the next location.

It seemed like once I purchased the antique French daybed above, I started noticing them everywhere. Here's some of my favorite pictures of both indoor and outdoor "rooms" featuring antique daybeds! 

I love the French daybed below and especially love the way it's snuggled up against the stone exterior. I can just imagine lying on this bed, hands resting under my head and looking up at the beautiful wisteria overhead. (Notice the horseshoe hanging on the house.)

I love everything about the photo below! This reproduction daybed is beautiful and the white cushion and two bolster pillows add a bit of formality to the casualness of the iron. I love the casualness of the colorful bleu French linen on the daybed above but prefer the more tailored look of the cushions below.

The beautiful picture below features an antique French daybed that looks exactly like the one I purchased. It looks like the owner recently painted the daybed. I love this complete setting - the contrast of textures in the stone, the woven shade on the iron trellis and the subtle taupes and greys used with a touch of violet in the glasses and decorative pillows.

(Photo courtesy of

The only way to describe this beautifully dressed French daybed is "dreamy."  This would be perfect in a young girls room.

Another beautiful antique French daybed found in the Louisville, Kentucky based store "Country French Antiques." This bed appears to have been recently painted. A lot of decorators like to keep antique French daybeds "as is" with their original chippy paint while others prefer to have them painted. This is purely a personal preference.

If you love the looks above and want an antique French country daybed for your own home, I'll have the one I purchased in France listed in My Faux French Chateau store soon!

I hope you enjoyed this post. Take care and have a great weekend.

Au revoir, Mitty

1 comment:

  1. I love these daybeds! Please let me know if you have one for sale.
    Felicia de chabris