Monday, April 18, 2016

19th Century Bedroom Furnishings Part 2

The first tidbit comes from a lecture given in England in 1880 by Edward Edis. The second comes from Ward & Lock's Home Book. In the book he continues on for an entire chapter so I've given a link.

The blinds of a bedroom should be of some soft toned colour, and not the vivid staring white and yellow to which we are so accustomed. I need not dwell further on this portion of my subject, as the cheerfulness and comfort of a bedroom is quite as much dependent upon the graceful taste of arrangement of the ladies of the house, as upon the upholstery and fittings with which it is furnished. There are innumerable small items of furniture which all tend to make up the general requirements of a bedroom, which with care and thought can be provided at comparatively small cost, in the way of hanging-glasses, jewel boxes, boot racks, bonnet cases, cases for medicine bottles, without lumbering up the generally small floor surface of the room, provided that they be thought of and arranged for, before any set or so-called ‘suite' of bedroom furniture is bought; for a few pounds all these necessary arrangements can be provided in suitable and useful form, in place of the usually extravagant, and ofttimes comparatively useless, articles of furniture which are generally considered necessary in the bedrooms of the house : chests of drawers should be so arranged that the lower portion may be adapted for clothes, while small flanking cup. boards may be provided on each side for the hundred and one small articles which are necessary in an ordinary family household, and which all help to make up the harmonious whole of a well-furnished house. In a small room the chest of drawers may be so fitted up that it shall do duty for a dressing-table with lookingglass complete, or the recesses formed by the chimney breast may be fitted with shelves and drawers, bonnet boxes and boot racks, all combined, with hanging spaces for clothes, at a much smaller expense than that of the elaborate and heavy articles which are sold as ‘wardrobes, and which all take up too much of the wall and floor space, in the usually cramped area, of an ordinary bedroom. The mantel-pieces may be fitted up with cupboards, shelves, and glasses, so as to add materially to the artistic character, as well as the general comfort of the room; and at a small expense a plain writing shelf or table may be attached to any of these pieces of furniture, and made to fold up or slide in, when not absolutely required for use. Often a bedroom is made to do duty as a private sitting-room as well, and too much care cannot therefore be taken to design the general furniture so that it may combine the necessary requirements for general use, as well as for the storage of clothes and linen, and so that the greatest amount of accommodation may be obtained in the smallest amount of space. Hanging book-shelves with cupboards on each side for medicine bottles are invaluable in a bedroom. I cannot too strongly advocate the desirability of all furniture being designed, in the general rooms of a town house, so that it may afford accommodation for the numerous requirements to which it has to be put, and cannot too strongly protest against the generally inconsistent and in great part useless articles, which are provided nowadays by ordinary upholsterers in the so-called ‘suite' of bedroom furniture. In my next and last lecture I shall endeavour to treat generally of the every-day articles of domestic USe. In decoration and furniture, it is above all desirable to avoid all eccentricity and seeming quaintness in design, with no particular use or object, to take care that everything in furniture shall be strong, serviceable, and fitting for its particular use, and to remember that elaboration and expense are really as unnecessary elements in the furnishing of a house as in dress and decorative.
Source: Decoration & Furniture of Town Houses ©1881

Bedroom Furniture—Necessary Articles—Bedsteads-Mattresses and BeddingBed Furniture-Bedclothes-The Washstand—Toilet Tables—The Toilet Glass —The Cheval Glass—Chests of Drawers^The Linen Press—The Lady s Wardrobe—The Gentleman's Wardrobe—Nfinor Articles—Invalid Furniture—lne Dressing Room—An Objectionable Habit—The Home Hospital.
268. BEDROOM FURNITURE. In treating of rooms used by day, it was necessary to regard each kind of reception room, and the furniture it contains, according to the use to which it is put. There will, however, be no occasion to do this in the present chapter, for the bedroom is the only kind of room used by night, and although bedrooms differ greatly from one another, according to the manner in which they are furnished, yet there is but one set of articles common to all, more or less of which articles are used. We will, therefore, glance briefly at the furniture that may be found in any well-appointed bedroom and its adjunct, the dressing-room.
260. DRESSING-ROOMS AND BEDROOMS. It is desirable that a dressing-room and bedroom should be immediately contiguous, and that there should be access to the dressing-room from the bedroom without having to go from the bedroom on to a landing to reach the dressing-room. In case of a married couple, for whom a dressingroom is far more necessary than for single persons, the dressing-room should be furnished with a view to the husband's use, and the bedroom for the special requirements of the wife. When the dressing-room is large enough, it should contain a bedstead at least 6 feet long by 2 feet 6 inches wide, which will prove of service on many occasions.

NECESSARY ARTICLES. In speaking of the furniture of the bedroom, we must notice the following articles:
1. The Bedstead, and its Palliasse, Mattresses, Bed, Bolster, and
2. The Bedclothes, consisting of Pillow and Bolster-cases, Sheets,
Blankets, Quilts, or Counterpanes.
3. The Washstand and its fittings, including Toilet-service, Toilet
pail, Can and Foot-bath, Water-bottle and Tumbler, Willow splash screen, frc.
4. The Toilet-table, with Toilet-glass, Toilet-cover, and Toilet-tailt
5. The Cheval Glass.
6. Chest of Drawers.
7. Lady's Wardrobe.
8. Bed-steps and Pedestal.
9. Towel Horse.
10. Bed Table.
In speaking of the furniture of the dressing-room, we need not notice more than —
1. The Gentleman's Wardrobe.
2. The Boot and Shoe Horse. All other articles that would find a place there having been mentioned with reference to the bedroom, we must then proceed to say a few words on— ,
Appliances for Hanging Clothes.
Source: Ward and Lock's Home Book ©18
The chapter continues, here's a link Chapter 14

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