Designers' Investments: Betsy Burnham
We already know West Coast designer Betsy Burnham is an ace at mixing old with new, high with not-so-high, and serious with lighthearted. But I was curious about some of her first personal buys -- pieces she felt had proven to be great investments.
She says she has quite a few favorite antique and vintage items. But if forced to mention only one, it might be her son Will's faux bamboo bed found almost ten years ago at Tod Carson's in L.A.
Back then, Will was graduating out of his crib and "There was no way I was going to buy anything typical or toddler-esque," explains Burnham, "so I found this gorgeous vintage piece, which was a lot of money for me at the time, was an odd size (we had to have a mattress custom made because it’s a 'european twin' -- somewhere between a twin and a full) and was admittedly sort of precious. "
Still, Burnham adds, "I’ve never fretted much about form versus function, because a lot of the things I like are vintage or antique. My philosophy is just to enjoy them and use them as much as possible in everyday life. So the bed was a purchase I’ve never regretted. Will is still sleeping in it, and maybe he can even give it to one of his kids one day."
No snob, Burnham is fine with the Pottery Barn Kids sheets that happen to be on young Will's bed at the moment.
These faux bamboo beds are certainly classics. Not too long ago, San Francisco garden designer Robyn Pope acquired one for her daughter. The example shown above top is a 19th century French piece available through Lauren Copen.