The structure at the head end of the bed, which provides a barrier and protection for the head, keeping the pillow in place and making the bed feel more secure and cosy.

* Bedheads also provide a convenient back-rest to sit up against; they can be an integral part of the bed structure or free issue. When the bedhead is part of the bed structure, there are often foot-boards, and both ends are held together with side rails. French beds, day beds, bateau lit and four-poster beds are all self-contained, full frame pieces of furniture.

* Beds are usually sited with the head against a wall; if independent of the bed frame, the bedhead should be fixed to the wall rather than the bed, both for stability and so that a divan can easily be moved for cleaning.

* Beds sited in the centre of a room are done so as a specific design decision, the bed being the centre piece and the bedhead an integral part of the frame. A bed may be sited across the corner of a room due to design or space considerations. If it is not a full frame bed, a bedhead or screen behind, effectively cutting the corner off, will make the head-end feel more secure.

* A bedhead can be new or antique, fabric upholstered, a panel or screen made of textile lengths, wood, metal or even a concrete form–in fact, made of any source or material in the right sort of shape. A cold and hard surface can look great, but it does need to be made comfortable with big cushions, bolsters, or anything imaginative, so long as it’s soft and warm to touch and you can rest comfortably against it.


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