When you think of the most romantic bed on earthwhat do you think of? A four poster bed of course! (If you were thinking a red velvet tufted circle bed that rotates in turn with a disco ball then I am afraid this might be the wrong blog for you.) Like canopies, four poster beds made their claim to fame in the 15thcentury with the development of Gothic. Furnishings and interior details became very heavy and architectural, mimicking the massive cathedrals of the time. As you can imagine, these were not the delicate four posters that you see today. These beds had huge wooden posts and came up to support a canopy covered roof with flowing drapery coming down the sides. If you are a regular reader then you have read my post on canopies. In case you haven’t, bedding textiles during the 15th century were the most prominent way to display rank and nobility. Not to mention that the fire place was not well understood and the technology to allow heat to spread throughout did not exist. Therefore, bedding textiles were not only a fashion statement, they created a micro climate of warmth that probably prevented death especially during the winters in England. If you could afford it, beds like these were adorned with the most expensive trimming and textiles that could be sewn with threads of gold, literally!
Even though many four posters do not function to support heavy wooden roofs and canopies, they still allow textiles to hang down and be tied to the posts. Although typically considered a traditional carved work, contemporary four poster beds are just as popular, and as expected, have developed into a whole new level of design. I still think that the most elegant paradise bed is a clean and simple four poster adorned with white sheer drapery. I can hear the grand caymans calling. If you want to feel like the ruler of your master bedroom, consider a four poster bed of any kind (and ditch the disco ball.)