The joy of William Morris

September 10, 2021 11:15 am


At the end of the Victorian era there was a group of concerned people. They viewed the landscape of Britain as changing rapidly and not for the good. They believed in a happy rural populace that skipped ot work in the local Lords fields, singing and performing Country dancing at lunchtime. Then the mythical people would slowly make their way home, they might do a bit of work on their own land and then be busy at their rural arts and crafts till bedtime.

Image credit

They were worried that the sudden appearance of Factories, Mills, Sea ports and trade would destroy this. The land would become industrialised and the people would be reduced to automatons working machines all day mass producing a part for another machine. They were right on the latter part of this belief and completely wrong about the contented happy rural workforce.

Image credit

One of these men was William Morris. He was determined not to lose the skills and crafting that the people possessed and so he tried to recreate works of art that could be used in the home. This included upholstery like the Curtains Tewkesbury based company provide, furniture and decor like wallpaper. These intricate complicated patterns have remained popular a century after his death.  Morris fused nature and wildlife to make patterns of real beauty. He then filled his home of Red house in Kent with them. It can still be seen today. It’s owned by an organisation that he and his fellows helped to create to protect the landscape and aristocratic homes, named the National Trust.