Bunk bed

Bunk bed with orange and pink pillows.

Since one basic function of a home is a place to lay your head at night (in other words to sleep), a bed is a basic piece of furniture.

Beds usually have mattresses, frames and bedding. The mattresses are of a variety of sizes and stuffed with a wide range of materials. The frames are also made from many different materials and have many different sizes -- from a crib to a California king. The bedding covers an even wider range of alternatives. Bedding includes sheets, blankets, quilts, coverlets, comforters, dust ruffles, pillows and duvets.

Two dogs, one bed

a comfy dog bed for two

Sometimes we also have beds for our pets or toys, like doll beds.

Preferences in bed type, size and bedding have individual and cultural components. The choice of a bed may also have practical considerations. For instance, it can be less expensive to have multiple beds of the same size, since they can all use the same bedding. Or you may want beds that have built in storage or other space saving features.


Kinds of beds:

My bed-great-quilt

This picture shows an example of a bed with a frame and a quilt.

Some beds are mainly for sleeping and others, like daybeds or futons are multi-purpose and designed for other functions, like sitting. Still other beds, like a Murphy bed (that folds up to the wall when not in use), a hammock or a fold-out-couch, are made to be stored away when not in use. Some beds have built in storage capacity. Other beds are more decorative, like a canopy bed. Canopies may have originally served to provide extra insulation or privacy, but now they're more for show. And some children's beds are designed to double as part of a play space, like bunk beds that can be a fort.

Sizes: The following are mattress sizes. Flat sheets and comforters will be larger.

See Wikipedia's article on bed size for more about the different standard sizes in various parts of the world.


a nicely made up bed


When deciding what kind of bed you want, keep in mind not just the size of the mattress, but also the size of the bed frame and then you'll want an additional 15-18" on the sides and end of the bed in order to be able to get around it. In addition, what other furniture will be in the room -- does it fit? Will you be able to open the drawers of a dresser between the bed and the wall?

Other choices are whether you want a mattress that uses foam, feathers, water or air. (See mattress.)



No one ever died from sleeping in an unmade bed. I have known mothers who remake the bed after their children do it because there is wrinkle in the spread or the blanket is on crooked. This is sick.
-- Erma Bombeck

There are many saying about beds. Some of them are

  • "You’ve made your bed, now lie in it." -- proverb
  • "Monsters under the bed" -- common fear of children
  • "Politics makes strange bedfellows." -- Charles Dudley Warner
  • "Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise" -- Benjamin Franklin
  • "get [or got] up on the wrong side of the bed" -- describes someone in a bad or contrary mood
  • procrustean bed -- mythology

To "wake up on the wrong side of the bed" means that you wake up in a state of uncomfortability or an indication that bad luck is to come during the course of the day. Also, to be accused as such is to be accused of being in an ill mood.

The term crib is also used sometimes to refer to a home. (See the synecdoche article on the symbolism wikia.)

Storage beds collage 1

beds with storage


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