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Six pieces of furniture you should invest in

Whether you’re moving into your first home or tenth home, it’s important for some of your furniture purchases to stand the test of time. Resisting the temptation to fill your rooms with every piece you may need at a low price is tough though and it may end up costing you more money in the long run. While a less expensive option will often make a fine choice for a few years, there are six critical items that really are worth the investment.

Sofa-It’s possible to find a well made sofa in many price points as many frames are crafted in the same way. It’s often the fabric selection that bumps the cost up. A sofa built to last will feature a solid hardwood frame with the legs and arms built into the frame versus attached separately. The seat and back cushion construction will effect both the comfort and the price. My first choice is spring down seat cushions with foam blend down backs which offer comfort and support. High-resilient foam wrapped in a down and feather is a good option too.

Tomlinson Sofa
Tomlinson Furniture

Dining Table-A quality dining table is a must have regardless of your of your lifestyle. Purchase a table that’s durable and will withstand the daily use from your family. A solid wood table with clean lines will last for decades and can be refinished down the road. A table with one or two leaves is also worth the extra money as it allows for flexible seating of additional guests.

Saloom Dining Table
Saloom Furniture

Dining Chairs-While your table top will take a lot of abuse, the chairs you choose will be the dining space work horse. From being pulled in and out, sat on and even stood on, it’s a must that your chairs be of solid wood construction that can hold the weight of your family. Make clean up of spills and other accidents easy with a performance fabric that will keep your seating looking great for years.

Bernhardt Furniture

Upholstered bed-A queen size (or king if you have the space) upholstered bed in a neutral fabric can start out in a master bedroom and migrate to a guest room if you upgrade. Select a classic design, with a solid wood frame that can work with a variety of design styles. I prefer a complete bed with upholstered side and foot boards eliminating the need for a dust skirt. Bonus tip: Invest in a high quality mattress. We spend a lot of time in bed and it’s important that your mattress lasts for a good seven to eight years.

Kravet Furniture Bed
Kravet Furniture

Chest of Drawers-A solid wood chest of drawers can be used in a myriad of places. A simple, classic design can be repurposed to hold clothes in the bedroom, linens in the dining room or be used as a TV center in the family room. Look for dovetail joints on the drawers, with sanded and finished edges. Wood on wood glides and a center rail support will help keep your drawers from sagging.

Swaim Furniture Burton Chest
Swaim Furniture

Accent Piece-Your home is a reflection of your personality and lifestyle. Investing in a piece you truly love like a painted desk, an antique mirror, or anything else that strikes the can’t live without emotion is worth the money.

Rattan writing desk
Chairish

Mr. H says: Your home should be a collection of what you love-Enjoy!

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bedroom design history interior design

History of the Bed

These days most everyone in developed countries sleep on beds and mattresses.  Thanks to our innovative ancestors we enjoy a comfortable night’s (or day’s) rest.

During the Neolithic period some 10,000 years ago, primitive man began to alter their nomadic ways and set up permanent housing.  These early humans developed primitive beds for sleeping by piling up leaves, palm fronds or animal skins for comfort.

Neolithic bed

In the Early Dynastic period around 3100 B.C.,  ancient Egyptians crafted simple wooden platforms to lift the bed several inches to avoid dirt and drafts, as well as pests like insects, snakes, mice, and rats. These beds frames would have had woven reeds across the bed frame to support a soft cushion made of wool.

Ancient Egyptian Bed
Gift of The Egyptian Research Account and British School of Archaeology in Egypt, 1912

Rich Greeks and Egyptians had elaborate beds carved in wood often embellished with gold, ebony, and jewels.  These beds also symbolized the owners social status since the more elite you were, the higher your bed.

Egyptian bed

During the 13th and 14th centuries, bed became very elaborate in wealthy homes Canopies were often suspended from the ceiling above the bed or built onto or around the bed on a frame called a tester. Fabric curtains were hung around the bed to provide additional warmth, privacy, and to protect sleepers from insects and unhealthy drafts.

Great Bed of Ware
Victoria & Albert Museum

While the poor would still have slept on straw mattresses on the floor, it became common for the rising middle class to sleep on mattresses made of feathers during the Renaissance period. These mattresses were placed on top of basic wooden structures with leather or rope lattices built into the frames to.  These strips of leather or rope stretched and sagged over time and had to be tightened periodically, thus coining the phrase “sleep tight.”

Rope bed

During the Renaissance, a style of bed which only had the tester and curtains at the head of the bed became popularized in France.   Owners tended to have either an elaborately carved bed frame or a light frame with elaborate hangings.

Catherine de' Medici's Rennaissance Bedroom
Château de Chenonceau

For the not so wealthy, important advances in the 1700’s began with the creation of iron bed frames with cotton-filled mattresses.  Disease was common and wooden beds often harbored bugs and insects.

Wrought Iron Bed

Although the modern innerspring mattresses was invented in 1871, it became mass produced and more affordable during the 1930’s.  Below is a typical scene at the Newberry County Mattress Project Center.

Newberry County Mattress
National Archives at College Park

Today one can choose to sleep on a myriad of options from water, air, space age foam to luxurious traditional mattresses.  Bed frames choices are virtually unlimited with a wide selection to fit every design style.

Swaim F1100 modern bed
Swaim

Our fur friends have seen their own sleeping comfort expand through the years too!

Wicker Dog Bed

Mr. H says: Never take tomorrow to bed with you-Enjoy!