Have you been dreaming of a sumptuous sanctuary to retreat to after a long, trialling day? Are you fantasising about creating a haven where you can kick off your shoes and burrow into a bed that indulges you in sheer comfort, opulence and luxury? Well good for you – you deserve it!
If a bedroom makeover has been on your mind and you’ve been doing your homework, you’ll know that what’s bang on trend at the moment is French inspired décor and furniture.
The latest way to create a welcoming retreat is to transform your bedroom into a French boudoir. And, of course, the focal point just has to be a French style bed. Magnificence and grandeur personified, French beds are totally en vogue for 2015. They have featured on numerous interiors shows recently such as 60 Minute Makeover and regularly hit the editorial headlines in magazines like House to Home.
Ornate is the Main Attraction
The ornate design of French beds is the main attraction. Their beautifully hand carved headboards and frames are often nothing short of spectacular in design, which of course is why they are so popular with those who love to indulge the drama queen inside them.
If you have just started out on your quest to choose the ultimate French style bed for your boudoir then there are two main design periods to look out for.
Louis XIV Style French Beds
Louis VIV style is personified by sheer extravagance, inspired by the Chateau de Versailles, one of the most elaborate monuments in Europe.
Louis XIV beds were all about the grand, ornate frames crafted from solid wood such as mahogany, walnut and oak with intricate hand carved detailing. They were often painted in striking glossy black or white, or gilded in glimmering, palatial bronze. Nowadays you’ll find them with the same richly ornamental carvings and painted in a range of colours, in particular antique white, or gloss black. Natural wood finishes also look very appealing and are widely available.
Combine with matching bedsides from the same period and punctuate walls with gilt wood ornate mirrors and crystal droplet candelabras to perfect the look. When choosing linen, you may be surprised to learn that to stay authentic, plain is the name of the game. In stark contrast to the beds themselves, Louis XIV linen style was crisp plain white, perhaps adorned with Champagne coloured banding just for a spot of definition. Bedspreads in rich golds and deep ruby reds also pay homage to this period.
Rococo Louis XV French Beds
The Rococo style is often associated with frivolity and exuberance but is also known for being delicate, asymmetrical and curvaceous. Having taken over from the highly decadent Versailles-inspired Regency style of Louis XIV, Rococo had a wider appeal at the time to a greater cross section of society.
Swirling curves and carved out shells and rocks head this style and its smooth supple lines are particularly appealing in a boudoir setting as they tend to relax the mood, as does the harmony of the delicate mouldings. Rococo style French beds tend to be painted woods from fruit bearing trees, with subtle, hand carved features and flowing, rounded edges.
Get the period style spot-on by choosing plain or patterned velvet throws and damask or flower patterned linen. Candelabras and wall sconces were the lighting of the day in the Louis XV period and if you select a colour scheme based on delicate pinks, yellows, blues and ivory blended with gold and cream, then you’ll really capture the essence of Rococo.
Harbouring a fancy for a French style bed? Click this way for a grand selection … !