Bedrooms · Design · Furniture · Inspiration · Interiors

Intrigued by Alcove Beds

Over the holidays, our family visited Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson, in Charlottesville, Virginia.  Jefferson was a great innovator and enjoyed developing new designs that would improve the functionality of his home.  One idea that fascinated him was an alcove bed, and when Jefferson redesigned Monticello in 1790, he designed a special alcove bed for his bed chamber. Here is Jefferson’s alcove bed at Monticello:


Jefferson’s bed was different from many alcove beds that are pushed up against a wall. For convenience, Jefferson’s bed was open on both sides. Jefferson liked that his particular design offered access to his office on one side of the bed and his bed chamber on the other.

Alcove beds tend to be cozy-looking nooks; many can be closed off by curtains for privacy.  They are also space savers, adding usable square footage to the bedroom.

Here are some modern versions of the alcove bed, inspired by Jefferson’s design:

Veere Grenney
Katie Ridder
Veere Grenney

Alcove beds are a great way to utilize the awkward space in a room with a sloped ceiling as shown in the three photos below:

via Pinterest


Nicholas Haslam via Pinterest
via Pinterest

A few more cozy, space-saving nooks:

Steven Gambrel via Pinterest
Steven Gambrel via Pinterest
via Remodelista
Architectural Digest

Alcove beds add an element of fun to a child’s room. They can have drawers underneath for hidden storage and bookshelves built around the bed.  They provide a child with a private and special space that is perfect for dreaming and reading:

One Kings Lane
via Pinterest



Alcove beds work well as doubles in guest rooms, giving visitors privacy and leaving open space in the room for lounging:

Architectural Digest

These beds are perfect for bunk rooms too:

Jenny Kennan Design
House Beautiful
via Pinterest

I think Thomas Jefferson had a wonderful idea, don’t you?


18 thoughts on “Intrigued by Alcove Beds

  1. I LOVE all these — they look so cozy. But I can see a problem — I’m afraid it would be very difficult to make up/put sheets on these beds. Any thoughts about that? (In the case of Jefferson’s bed, I imagine running from one room to the other, back and forth, in the process!?)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These are so appealing, especially the ones with bookshelves. My kids would have loved. Recalling the acrobatics required for sheet changing on bunk beds, however, one has to be prepared for that inconvenience. Not a game changer, but something to think about.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love alcove beds! I currently am making/changing sheets on a loft bed in a corner. I would rather be doing that on a lower level alcove–no ladder!


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