Sunday, 10 September 2017

Grandma's Bed

When I was a little girl we would go and stay at Grandma's for a week in the school holidays.  One of the best things for me was being allowed to sleep with Grandma in her big bed, which got me thinking of the John Denver song......

It was nine feet high and six feet wide
And soft as a downy chick
It was made from the feathers of forty 'leven geese
Took a whole bolt of cloth for the tick.

(You can see John performing a rather different version of the song here.)

Now my Grandma's bed didn't quite have the dimensions of those in the song, but it was high and old fashioned, albeit with a lumpy kapok mattress.  However it did have a nice white Marcella quilt and green eiderdown.  The best thing though was that it had Grandma and she sometimes let me brush her long white hair.

Her Singer treadle sewing machine sat to one side and an old turned leg side table on the other side, under which there was a Big Old Tin Treasure Chest. There was also a big blue chair and blue chest of drawers.

This all took place over a rather short time frame, as she died when I was nine.  I was always rather sentimental and for quite some years loved going into her bedroom, sitting on the big bed and looking at the treasures from the trunk - old photo albums and a huge fat book called "Medicology", which was fascinating.

Many years passed and the room was to be repurposed.  The sewing machine came to me and currently has our TV sitting on it.  The chair and side table are with Mum.  What to do with the bed?  At the time we had own bed and our spare bedroom was set up with lovely old antique beds.  Sadly, I had no room for the bed I loved so much.  In the end my brother took it, used it for a while and then it went into storage, firstly in his garage and them in Mum's.  When Mum moved to the retirement village last year we ended up with the bed, once again in storage.

Finally, now that we have got rid of all the boxes of books we have a room in which to house Grandma's bed.

It is a simple bed, dating form 1927. The timber was rather dry, but other than that is in surprisingly good condition.  After lots of furniture polish and a new mattress it has come up a treat.  

The main design elements are the sweet decals on the head and foot, which is what I loved so much.  However, what I have really noticed is that it isn't really all that big - how perceptions change as we grow older. 

This room is still very much a work in progress.   No one can sleep here as yet, as there is no bedding under the quilt.  I still have to go shopping to make it nice and snug. It is the perfect size for my Nature's Journey quilt.  The Marcella quilt is probably the original one off the bed.

Yes, there is a sewing machine beside the bed, where there always was one, even if it isn't Grandma's. This White was one of our first auction purchases and lived in our bedroom for many years. Apparently, my other grandmother had a White.  We have also had the bedside cupboard on the other side of the bed for many years.  The quilt on the rack is an Anni Downs design I made from a kit not long after she opened her first shop here in town. 

We still have to hang some pictures and add a few bits and bobs to make it welcoming, but it sure looks better than a room full of boxes of books.


Chookyblue...... said...

Special memories for sure........

Jenny said...

Such lovely memories of your beloved Grandmother. And so nice to have her bed back with you, covered with one of your lovely quilts. The new mattress will make it so much more comfortable.

Deb R said...

aww what a beautiful story Janice...brings back many memories with my Nannas bed...ohh 'the flower patch' don't we all have that quilt hehehehe

Jenny said...

Oh Janis a lovely story about your grandmother. Perhaps we should all write something about our grandmothers. I too have my grandmas machine , a singer treadle. My best memory was to get into her bed and she told me stories of the past when she went to school on horse and cart and all sorts of things. I loved story time in her bed. Her room had so much purple , she loved purple.
To our grandmothers!

Maria said...

How wonderful to now have Grandmas special bed and Natures Journey is beautiful on the bed...

loulee said...

How lucky you are to have items belonging to your Grandma. Things do seem smaller now that we're bigger don't they? LOL

Jenny of Elefantz said...

Special memories and now the beginnings of a beautiful bedroom.