Antique Iron Bed Frame Value And Identification Guide

One of the most appealing and somewhat intriguing showpieces you can display in your bedroom is a bed coupled with an antique iron bed frame.Not only does it give a nostalgic vibe to the aura of a bedroom, but also lights it up with its reminiscent elegance.However, we would not want you to get scammed after spending all those hard-earned bucks!So this blog is dedicated to all those aspiring or active antique collectors, where we will guide you to purchase a fool-proof antique iron bed frame.

What Are The Different Types Of Antique Iron Bed Frames?

This is a generic classification of such antique iron frames.But do keep in mind that antique iron bed frames can be easily replicated or ‘masked’ to trick you into believing their age.To avoid that, make sure to consult our general identification guide below!

1. Brass Bed Frames

South Shore Prairie Metal Platform Bed-Queen, Bronze
source: South Shore Prairie Metal Platform Bed-Queen, Bronze

This can go either way; with a pure brass composition of the bed frame or a superficial brass coating onto ordinary metal.

One reason to choose brass over other metals is because of its radiant warm sheen, which instantly lights up the room and adds a timid reflective element.However, for brass to execute such properties, it should be well polished and cleaned.

Brass bed frames require high maintenance and regular polishing.Since it is subject to rapid tarnishing, identifying an antique brass bed frame might prove to be a handful!

2. Iron Bed Frames

Antique Victorian Wrought & Cast Iron Bed NO Rails
Source: Antique Victorian Wrought & Cast Iron Bed NO Rails

Iron beds give a very classic rustic look.And due to their easy malleability property, they are furnished into elaborate and delicate designs.


Victorian iron bed frames are reminiscent of the gothic times; they give a very bold and dark look to the room, which is often considered majestic.On the other hand, art deco iron bed frames lean towards the modern contemporary style.


Iron beds are strong and repel the harboring of bacteria or excessive dust, which is why some people still prefer iron bed frames over traditional wood/plywood beds.It is also to be noted that the most authentic antique bed frames were cast in iron only.


Now let us have a look at the downside of iron bed frames.The issue with iron is none other than rust.Like brass, it too requires maintenance.Another feature that should be taken into consideration is the weight of iron bed frames.These babies are very heavy and thus require massive muscle to move and shift.



3. Blended Metal Bed Frames

Once different metals are mixed together (to make alloys), it provides the benefits of both the metals combined!For antique bed frames, they are usually found as a composition of iron and brass.This is an affordable option and also has better properties to offer.Neither too heavy nor too prone to rust.Modern metal bed frames consist of a lightweight alloy known as Aluminium.

4. Painted Metal Bed Frames

Antique Ornate SteelIron Twin Sz Bed Frame HeadboardFootboard Farm Cottage
Source: Antique Ornate SteelIron Twin Sz Bed Frame HeadboardFootboard Farm Cottage

Painted metal bed frames came into the trend once designers realized that a need for vibrant pops of color is much needed in the furniture industry.With paint, the options are limitless.But with antiques, colors were mostly limited to subtle pastels or floriferous patterns.


Not only did they appeal to a lot of buyers back in the day, but also managed to secure a hype in the market.However, paint doesn’t last for very long and the antique bed frames in this variety would mostly be subjected to erosion and wear off.This can always be fixed with a fresh swipe of paint!

How To Assess The Antiqueness/Age Of Iron Bed Frames?

This part here proves to be quite tedious.One needs to possess prior knowledge and a thorough understanding of the antique market to identify them accurately.Here are a few tips and tricks that will help you distinguish between a genuine antique over a fake one.


1. Look For Traces Of Brand Tags/Engravings

This may come off as an inconspicuous mark, so you will have to keep a keen eye out for it.Such labels help in the identification of the manufacturer name, which you can then track and trace the origins of!This is one of the best ways to determine the age of an antique iron bed frame.

2. Scrutinize The Structure And Architecture Of The Bed

In some cases, the iron bed frame does not have a brand tag due to many reasons; it could have worn off or was produced generically without an identity.

In such cases, you would have to explore the build of the iron bed frame.The most antique iron bed frames involved the use of ropes to bind together the head and foot.Ropes were then slowly replaced by bolts and cast brass.A specific kind of joint, known as the Tenon & Mortise, started to emerge in the Victorian era and hence was used to bind many Victorian iron bed frames.Today, the head and foot are not an integral part of the iron frame – you can use this trick to set antiques apart from modern bed frames.

3. Compare The Styles

Iron bed frames similar in structure and style might belong to the same time frame.So if you can identify the age of either one, you will automatically acquire an approximate age of the other!

There are three main kinds of styles employed in the architecture of iron bed frames.

They are as follows:

  • Victorian Style: Circa 1800s
  • Art Nouveau Style: 19th century
  • Art Deco Style: 1920-1930s

4. Identify The Metal Used

Around the time of World War I, cast iron was the primary metal to be employed in the manufacturing of bed frames.This also explains why most Victorian beds have a cast iron bed frame.Aluminum later became popular because of its lighter weight and cheap cost.Aluminum bed frames usually indicate a modern production.

How To Rate The Value Of An Antique Iron Bed Frame?

There are quite a few aspects to consider when you are about to purchase an antique.These aspects determine the price of the antique and since there are so many scams in the market, we always advise our readers to dig their noses deep into research!

Here are a few that we will be discussing.

1. Style & Design

Some designs are so timeless that they have made their way into modern production as well.Such designs have more value and are readily used today as well.However, obsolete styles are priced low, since there are not many customers that would want to purchase them.

2. Size

This is more of a matter of convenience and facilitation.Antique beds that have been sized to receive the mattresses that are manufactured today are much more in value than their counterparts.If your current mattress can easily pop into the antique, then consider it valuable and worthy of purchase.

3. Damage

The condition of the antique iron bed frame is of utmost value.Extremely worn-out or ragged pieces of antique furniture are sold for much less.On the other hand, those in immaculate condition and the ones that can be easily used to date have more value.Restorations conducted to address damage control also have an impact on the price; it must be done with delicacy and fineness to keep the authenticity of the antique intact.Excessive restorations and repairs devalue the antique.

What Are Some Good Options For Antique Iron Bed Frames That I Can Purchase?

Vintage 19th Century Iron Twin Bed

Vintage 19th Century Iron Twin Bed

This one from Etsy costs 1700$.It is a European style twin bed frame that has delicate and beautiful hand painted details on the center of the frame.

Luain Antique Iron Bed

Luain Antique Iron Bed

This one has been finished to perfection.It has a black frame with intricate details and swirls that can grab the attention of any individual.The Luain Antique Iron Frame (with the bed) costs 2210 dollars.

Victorian Cot Iron Bed Frame

Victorian Cot Iron Bed Frame

This iron bed frame costs 356$ and the seller claims it to be a very rare piece of antique furniture.Apparently, it is subject to rust and erosion but a few restorations can make it perfect for display!

Final Thoughts

I hope this article was helpful to the audience.We covered major aspects of identifying an antique bed frame and also shed some light on assessing its value.We also dug up some information on antique iron bed frame styles and pulled up some useful tips to assess their price.However, this article is intended to familiarize you with the antique market and the way it works.Always conduct your own research to avoid becoming subject to scams!


1 thought on “Antique Iron Bed Frame Value And Identification Guide”

  1. Thank you for your information, it has been helpful. However I know that my Iron Bed is at least 100 years old due several tips you have pointed out, but can not find a picture of or the style. Can you please help me with the era and style?


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