Have you ever read the description for a piece of furniture and wondered what the terms that were used to describe it meant? If so, you’re not alone! One of the things we want to do on this blog is to help clear up that confusion by explaining some of the different terminology to you. Our “Furniture Savvy” posts will focus on a particular term, giving a brief description of what it means, and then showing a few photographic examples.
So first up, let’s talk about bombe style case pieces. Pronounced (and sometimes spelled) “bombay”, these chests get their name from the French word for bomb, due to their shape. Bombe chests originated in Paris in the 1700s, and are known for their curvy, elegant look. These pieces have an exaggerated outward bulge in the front and sides, and then curve inward at the base. They tend to have plenty of display space on top, and deep drawers for abundant storage inside as well. You’ll find bombe chests throughout the home, including dressers, night stands, china cabinets, and accent pieces in the living room or entryway. The pictures below are examples of some bombe style case pieces.
You’ll notice that while the degree of curve varies, the overall look is very similar. You can also see that the style of the feet can differ. The ball or claw type foot is more traditional, with the tapered leg giving an alternative and slightly less formal appearance.
Now you know the basics about bombe chests! What furniture term would you like for us to cover next?