“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” – William Morris
A quote I couldn’t agree with more! Today I decided that I really wanted to write about where interior design influence can come from. Especially where I tend to get inspiration from as what influences people can vary and is always personal. I love interior design and my inspiration comes from the people around me, my background, my work life, and a lot of the time simply the places I visit.
Last year before we moved into our new flat I had the privilege of going into the famous Standen house in Sussex, which is actually part of the National Trust sites since 1972. I went with my sister who had a membership to National Trust sites in the UK, so I was lucky as I got to spend some quality time with just her on a beautiful spring day, for free! 😀 Thats one person that always inspires me, whether it be interior design or not. She’s artistic and incredible, so the tour of the site was just a huge added bonus.
For those of you who don’t know much about the site or house I’ll just give a brief description. The building of the house started in 1891 and was finished in 1984 at a cost of £18,065. My God what I wouldn’t do to be able to recreate something with the same budget 😛 And following what William Morris said ‘A house should be clothed by its garden’. William Morris (1834–1896) was one of the single most influential designers of the nineteenth century. He was more than just a designer, and under his guidance and influence the Morris & Co. firm flourished into the fashionable decorating firm it is still to this day. The house was designed to compliment the garden and vice versa, and it was purposely done so that the house and garden are seen together as one large design. The gardens of the gorgeous house were created by Margaret Beale, who happened to be the lady of the house 🙂 She was fascinated by plants, and thus had a strong influence on how the gardens came to be. This said Morris made sure to bring the outside back in. The house is filled with floral prints and stunning inspiration from the garden. The house is chalk full with Morris carpets, fabrics and wallpapers. As we walked through I couldn’t help but be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of colour, intensity, and design that went into it. It was like walking through a work of art. At points it was overpowering for sure, because as I’ve stated before, I love my simple clean lines, but I couldn’t help but be in awe and a bit jealous if I’m honest, of such a stunning house. I could only imagine what it was like to live there over 100 years ago. Having said that however, a lot of the designs and prints in that house are used to this day. If not directly, then definitely influentially.
We ended our lovely walk with the sites café’s own baked cakes and organic juices. It was too yum to even express in words! I also noticed the house did a lot of family fun times, like easter egg hunting for example. So its a great place to go and just have a family moment outside as well. The house is filled with facts and daily routines of the people that lived there. The gardens were superb and I could really tell why Mrs. Beale was so fascinated by plants, because she really did have a wonderful array of them! The house definitely inspired me in terms of colours and prints and its something I still carry with me today. I’ve never seen a house that literally didn’t have a corner of it decorated in some sense or another. So, if you’re ever wondering where to get inspiration from… then sometimes it really is as easy as walking outside and looking around. Or simply taking a trip with your sibling or spouse and making a day of it. I get inspired everyday by something. But rarely do I get blown away by the sheer amount of artistry in one spot! If you need some colour in your life or even just a bit of delicious carrot cake. Then go and have a snoop around Standen house! You won’t come back looking at prints the same way again, I promise you!