San Juan Capistrano
“The replica of the bed within these walls is from the period 1788-1868, although made in mission workshops by Indians, most standing furniture shows Spanish influence and a charming disregard for straight lines, square corners and sharp edges and is reflective of both the Indian and Spanish culture.
Materials used in the furniture construction were only those that were readily available. The artisans of Spanish influence were quick to recognize the lasting quality and durability of the various woods nearby. As a result much of the wood used is either fir or pine. Although oak was available, the hardness of oak and the softness of the implements used to cut and shape the oak made it almost impossible to use.
Buffalo skins, horse hides or animal hides were used in strips in a cris cross manner over the bed frame. Straw, grass or animal skins were placed over this. Where skins were readily available, whole skins were used.
Furniture along the California coastal waters was first fashioned by ships carpenters from the Spanish ships. As Indians were taught to assist and apprentice to these Spanish artisans, the Spanish went to other channels of interest and left the mission woodworking to the Indians. “