Shabby chic decor creates a soft, friendly atmosphere that looks a little worn around the edges. This type of decor favours soft colours, mixed fabrics and blending furniture from many eras together, based on a unified palette and simplicity or sameness of lines and shapes. Metal bed frames are particularly good choices for the shabby chic style because the metal can be easily painted and distressed to match the colours of the room.
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Metal is easy to bend. Metal beds often have interesting shapes, curves and contours that add drama and movement to the bed. By looking for unusual metal beds with lots of features and curves, a homeowner can add drama without a need for bright or shocking colours. A dramatic bed can still look simple and understated, which is exactly the type of contrast that makes the room feel exciting instead of dated.
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Metal beds tend to be inexpensive and easy to find. Look for good structural lines. It isn't important if the bed is straight or if the frame is rusted. If the lines are good, it's not hard to straighten out the metal, blast the frame and paint the bed in the colours that suit your room. Look past minor defects. Try to find solid metal rather than thin-walled or pot metal, as solid metal will refinish with better results. Look for beds in standard mattress sizes.
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Modifying a Bed
Metal beds are easy to modify. If you find an older metal frame in the size and shape that works for your room, consider adding a canopy. Most towns have a metal shop where you can have the bed frame modified to include a decorative canopy and top knot. The workers will usually be happy to blast and paint the entire frame during the modification, giving you a special, customised finished piece. Make sure the bed comes apart so you can install it in the room.
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New and Refurbished
Well-made brass beds are sold new and refurbished. Add a brass bed to a shabby chic bedroom by making the bed a focal point so the brass becomes a piece of art. Soften the room by using tone-on-tone painted wood furniture and an eclectic mixture of linens. This allows the bed to stand out as a statement piece. Use a soft pastel colour on the walls to add contrast if you decide to use all-white linens.