Market Monday: Kate Morton & William Morris

"Wars make history seem deceptively simple.  They provide clear turning points, easy distinctions: before and after, winner and loser, right and wrong.  True history, the past, is not like that.  It isn't flat or linear.  It has no outline.  It is slippery, like liquid; infinite and unknowable, like space.  And it is changeable: just when you think you see a pattern, perspective shifts, an alternative versions proffered, a long forgotten memory resurfaces."

 Kate Morton is the brilliant author of this quote.  I just finished reading her book, The House at Riverton, and I loved this paragraph for a couple of reasons.  First, it summed up succinctly the way I've felt about  history in just a few lines.  Second, the same can be said about design.  It seems linear until you think about what determines a trend.  Following the outline of one style to the next you can see how what is happening in the world has everything to do with how we choose to adorn ourselves, our homes.  Studying history in conjunction with my love for art and design gives me little thrills as I see the one affected by the other.  The Victorian opulence being followed by the Arts and Crafts is the example I'm thinking of today and Kate Morton's books have a way of weaving beautiful stories including details of the architecture and details from the lifestyle that make history really come to life for me. This particular novel was a perfect choice because it is set in time as everything was shifting from the very conventional to the more free spirited movement.

So while the Victorian has never been one of my very favorites in terms of style, I can appreciate all that hand crafted detail and the pretty feminine lines. I've spent some time the last couple of weeks studying it so that I can better understand the Arts and Crafts movement since I'm working on a home being built in that style.
Which leads me to my second feature: William Morris.  He was a big player in the movement from Victorian to Arts and Crafts.  {I'll be talking more about this later.}

I especially love the paper products with his patterns on them.
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  1. "The House at Riverton", I will have to seek that book out. It sounds really interesting and I love history and anything that signifies it. Have fun with your current project.

  2. I feel like I've just been educated! I know I went to college once...