What Is a Fainting Couch?
What Is a Fainting Couch?
A fainting couch is a sofa with a high back and arms, often decorated with frills and lace. It has one end of the back raised, making it easily distinguishable from more traditional couches. This piece of furniture that was popular in the Victorian era.
The term “fainting couch” is not documented as being in use until the 20th century, so popular speculation about its need for people to use when feeling faint should only be considered a myth. However, it was used by women during the 19th century as a revival of ancient furniture styles.
It was also popularized by psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, who used it to make his patients feel more at ease during therapy sessions. Fainting couches were also used for more privacy during home treatment pelvic massages.
Fainting Couch History
A fainting couch is a modern term describing a couch with a back that is traditionally raised at one end. It was popular in the 19th century as a revival of ancient furniture styles. The term “fainting couch” is not documented as being in use until the 20th century.
It has been speculated that these couches were popular during the Victorian era due to women fainting from wearing tight corsets, however this does not have historic support.
Instead, it has been proposed that these “day beds” were used for relaxation and taking naps throughout the day so as not to mess up a freshly made bed.
The Turkish fainting couch was inspired by Middle Eastern seating, which boasted everything from tufted details to eye-catching skirts.
Another theory regarding the origin of the fainting couch is connected to Sigmund Freud, who used them in his psychoanalytic practice for more privacy during home treatment pelvic massages.
Fainting Couch Vs Chaise Lounge
The main difference between a fainting couch and a chaise lounge is that a fainting couch has arms and reclines, while a chaise lounge does not have armrests and does not recline.
Fainting couches were used in Victorian times to provide support and comfort for ladies who felt lightheaded or overwhelmed. A chaise lounge is designed to provide a place for someone to sit or lie down that is comfortable but not as supportive as couch furniture due to the absence of armrests.
Fainting couches are usually ornate with intricate carvings, while contemporary takes on the fainting couch feature fewer intricacies and usually just have a single back with two rolled arms or no arms at all.
Additionally, the back of a fainting couch is high on one side and low on the other, while the back of a chaise lounge has the same height.
How To Decorate With A Fainting Couch
Decorating with a fainting couch can be a great way to add a unique and inviting touch to any room.
A fainting couch is essentially a form of daybed with a curvy wood frame and back that is raised at one end. It is believed to have originated during the Victorian era, when women would use it to recover from wearing tight corsets.
Today, fainting couches are surprisingly versatile and can easily steal the show in an understated room or fit in with more opulent spaces.
Soft cushions on the fainting couch create an inviting effect, while accent cushions in bold colors and geometric prints give an updated look. To further integrate the fainting couch into the rest of the room, accent cushions that match it can be added to other seats or a bed.
When decorating with a fainting couch, glamorous lighting is recommended. This could include standing lamps with fringe, chandeliers on dimmer switches, vanity lights, or even homemade canopies for beds.
Fainting couches come in many different styles and colors, including purple, so you can find one that fits your design scheme perfectly. Showcasing the fainting couch as a key piece of furniture will help bring out its unique silhouette and create an eye-catching focal point for your room.
Where To Buy A Fainting Couch
Fainting couches, also known as chaise lounges, are available for purchase from a variety of retailers, including Amazon, 1stDibs, Etsy, VisualHunt, and Wayfair.
Prices vary depending on the size and style of the couch, but many sellers offer free shipping when you purchase from them.
Fainting couches are designed for comfort and typically have one raised end and one low end. They can be found in a variety of styles, including Victorian.