Do You Know Your Divan from Your Bedstead?

19 Comments12 March 2013  |  Helen

We spend roughly a third of our lives in bed, so it is important to invest in the right bed and mattress to ensure a fulfilling and comfortable night’s sleep. There are a few different options for bed frames, and here we will explain the differences between the frame options available.

Platform Bed

Most contemporary beds, especially those made in Italy, are platform beds. A platform bed is similar to a bedstead in the way that the headboard and footboard are attached to the bed frame, and the mattress would also sit on top of slats, however the main difference with a platform bed is that the foot board does not rise over the mattress and will always be the same height as the side panels which gives a cleaner look and allows you to sit on your mattress at the foot of your bed. Modern platform beds can be made in a range of contemporary materials from wood, high gloss or matt lacquers or upholstered in fabric. There is a very large range of modern styles to choose from when looking for a platform bed, and as they tend to be lower down than Divan or Bedstead frames they offer a more minimal, contemporary look.

Divan Base Beds

A divan base is essentially a rectangular shaped box, usually with a box-spring inside, that you place your mattress on top of. This Divan base usually does not come with a headboard attached, so that would be a separate purchase. Divan bases are a more traditional type of bed base and the style options are very limited.


A bed stead is a bed which has a headboard and foot board which are attached to the bed side panels. This style of bed frame has more style options than a Divan base, but still is a more traditional style due to the foot board rising over the mattress. The mattress rests on a slatted base, which is usually made from either flat or sprung wooden slats. This style of bed frame is more popular in metal or wood material options, and a typical design style of the bedstead would be the sleigh bed. 

Storage Bed

A storage bed is a bed base which has integrated internal storage. In less expensive bed models the storage is accessed by drawers that are within the base of the bed. In higher quality storage beds the storage area is accessed via a gas-lift piston mechanism that lifts the entire mattress and slat system to give you access to the inside of the bed base. Storage beds are great for additional storage where space is at a premium, and is ideally used for storing away bed linen, suitcases and seasonal clothing.