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Happy 182nd Birthday William Morris!

24th March 2016

If you’ve been on Google today, you might have seen a few of the Google Doodles which are celebrating William Morris. Now, you might have noticed that we think he’s pretty great all year round, but since it’s his birthday, and we’ve seen articles discussing who he is and why his legacy lives on, we thought we’d tell you a bit about him!

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Morris was born in Walthamstow on March 24th, 1834. He became a textile designer and artist, a writer, poet and a socialist who was both heavily involved and influential in the English Arts and Crafts movement, and with the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.

Originally, after being educated at Oxford, he trained as an architect, which we have spoken about in past blogs, however he was highly interested in the arts, and, after being influenced by some of the big names in the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood including Rossetti became more involved in the arts. Together with these friends, he created art that has stood the test of time, today many of the stain glass windows they designed remain in England’s churches, St James’ Palace in London being one of their first commissions; if you research into what they created together, their work is vast and rather beautiful.

He married Jane Burden in 1859, who modelled in many of the Pre-Raphaelites art work, she was an unconventional beauty, but became one of their favourite models. Philip Webb, Morris’ friend, was commissioned to build them a house on some land he had bought in Kent, which at that time was a rural area (today, Bexleyheath is a suburb of London.) If you’ve ever visited Red House, you’ll know Webb did a great job of creating the home Morris envisioned; a modern home which would be ‘medieval in spirit.’ He furnished the house himself, a visit will show you the Morris’ wallpaper and designs throughout the home. He created these with the help of a few friends, since he was particular in what he wanted and felt he couldn’t find that anywhere, from the success of this, a business was born; Morris, Marshall, Faulkner & Co. This company produced a range of domestic furniture and wallpaper (again, because Morris couldn’t find any he liked enough to use in his home.)

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If you’ve been looking into Morris today, curious about what today’s Google Doodle is, you might have caught that he was also a rather successful writer and poet along with his artistic talents. Quite frankly, we don’t know how he juggled so many talents at once, all with such success!

He founded SPAB, something that is still running today, which was the ‘Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings’ in 1877; which was a response to the destruction of original features of historical buildings in the name of ‘restoration.’ We have him to thank then, that so many historic buildings remain today in such a good and true construction- public and professional restorers are today taught by SPAG how to correctly restore historic buildings.

 

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His life was much more than a handful of accomplishments written in a blog or on a news site for the day, in his lifetime he accomplished a great deal, and even more remarkably- the things he did over 100 years ago, remain today and still affect us now. The fact his designs are still being printed, bought and loved today as much as ever, show what a great and imaginative artist he was. If you fancy learning more, have a look back at our past blogs to read more about his life and those of his friends.

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Happy Birthday William Morris! What is your favourite design of his? Ours (right now!) is his Willow Bough design- in blue or green, we can’t decide!

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When the audio accurately sums up how you feel about a design 🫶🏻 Beautiful Sweet Briar was first designed in 1912, we love the sweet little pink flowers in the climbing rose stems 🌹 This licensed Morris design is now back in stock, let us know if you’d like a sample! ✨
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#williammorris #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #fabric #fabricstash #ukfabric #ukprinting #floralfabric #preraphaelite #floraldesign #floraldesigner
Our William Morris Willow Bough green placemats are now back in stock! ✨ They’re a beautiful addition to the table for every meal time 🫶🏻
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#williammorris #williammorrisdesign #williammorrisfabrics #fabric #placemats #tablescape #floraltable #preraphaelite #floralhome
🌷 William Morris month day 30 🌷 As we come near the end of Morris month, we’re celebrating with a fabric stack, full of beautiful licensed designs, which is your fave? 🌿 “Remember that a pattern is either right or wrong. It cannot be forgiven for blundering, as a picture may be which has otherwise great qualities in it. It is with a pattern as with a fortress, it is no stronger than its weakest point.”- William Morris 🤍 
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#williammorris #williammorrisdesign #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #fabric #floralfabric #floralfabrics #fabricstack #fabricstash #fabricstore #onlinefabrics #ukfabricsonline #independantbusiness
🐭 William Morris month day 29 🐭 We’ve been loving William Morris month to celebrate Morris’s birthday month, spreading his floral magic by posting everyday - have you discovered a new favourite design of his this month? 🌿 We absolutely love these little mice and the banner by @mini_and_bob - aren’t they so lovely! 🐭🤍
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#williammorris #williammorrisdesign #williammorrisfabrics #fabric #fabriccrafts #craftersgonnacraft #crafting #williammorrisprint #strawberrythief #willowbough #shopsmall #independantbusiness #ukbusiness
🌷William Morris Month Day 28🌷 Happy Easter weekend everyone! 🐥 We hope everyone has a lovely long bank holiday 🌿 We’re already planning some beautiful William Morris tablescapes, nothing too complex, all you need is some Morris florals, some flowers and lots of chocolate! 🐰
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#wiliammorris #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #fabric #fabrics #eastertable #eastertable #easterstyling #preraphaelite #preraphaelites #floraltable #preraphaelitebrotherhood #victoriandesign
🌷 William Morris Month Day 26 🌷 Absolutely loving a spring time floral on the table right now, especially when paired with an Easter craft or two! 🤍
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#williammorris #williammorrisfabrics #williammorrisfabric #morris #fabric #fabriccraft #fabrics #crafting #independantbusiness #indiebusiness #preraphaelite
🌿 William Morris Month Day 25 🌿 Florals on florals on florals; all of the William Morris florals just look so beautiful together and, as Morris said himself, “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful” 🌷
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#williammorris #williammorrisdesign #williammorrisfabrics #williammorrisfabric #morrisdesign #quoteoftheday #florals #modernflorals #teatowels #preraphaelitebrotherhood #preraphaelites
🐥 William Morris Month Day 23 🐥 Loving the sunshine this week for springtime 🌿 We absolutely love Willow Bough on the table in the sunshine paired with spring blooms 🌷
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#williammorris #williammorrismonth #williammorrisdesign #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #fabric #willowbough #easter #eastertables
🌷 William Morris Month Day 22🌷 A themed table is always our favourite, we’ve been loving setting the table lately with an Easter theme- especially when it means we can eat the eggs after! 🐣✨ 
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#williammorris #williammorrismonth #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #preraphaelite #eastertables #eastereggs #eastertablescape #springflorals
🌿 William Morris Day 20 🌿 William Morris fact of the day; did you know he founded the Kelmscott Press? 🖋️ He wrote of the venture – “Here is a new craft to conquer and to perfect.” Printing began at the press in Spring 1891 🪴 He designed multiple fonts including “Golden” Roman typeface and “Troy” Gothic type along with “Chaucer” and he worked to create beautiful books in regards to their designs which took into account their type, image and decorative elements – you can see beautiful examples of what he achieved today if you do a quick search on the Kelmscott Press- it’s well worth a Google! 🌷
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#williammorris #williammorrisfabric #preraphaelite #preraphaelites #kelmscottpress #morris #williammorrismonth #williammorrisdesign #victorian #victorianart #victorians
🌷 William Morris Month Day 19🌷 Happy first day of spring everyone! 🪴 We celebrated in our favourite way; coffee and cake of course! 🍰 Now we love florals all year round of course, but especially love adding in even more this time of year to reflect the blooms in the garden 🌷 What’s your favourite Morris design this time of year? 🌿
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#williammorris #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #williammorrismonth #spring #spring2024 #preraphaelite #florals #floralfabric #springflorals #springflowers
📝 William Morris Month Day 18 📝 Did you know that as well as being an incredible designer, William Morris was also a brilliant writer and poet; have you read any of his writing? What’s your favourite quote? 🌷🌿
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#williammorrismonth #williammorris #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #morris #strawberrythief #quotesaboutlife #quotestoliveby #quotes
☀️ William Morris Month Day 17 ☀️ The sunshine today has made us feel so excited for spring, it’s almost officially here! 🪴 This William Morris bunting is the dreamiest backdrop to all the spring summer days in the garden, it’s by @ellejoycreations - isn’t it fabulous!🌷
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#spring #williammorrismonth #williammorris #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #fabric #fabricstash #smallbusinessuk #printedintheuk #etsyshop
🐰 William Morris Month Day 16 🐰 A Sunday spent Easter decorating, these cute little bunnies were a craft a few years back and they are always a firm favourite to bring out this time of year to hang on our Easter tree 🐥 Have you started decorating or eating eggs yet? 🐣
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#williammorrismonth #williammorris #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #williammorrisprint #easter #easterdecor #eastercrafts #eastercrafting #fabriccraft #greatfabricdestashuk
🍓 William Morris Month Day 15 🍓 Absolutely can’t wait for the summer months to get our Strawberry Thief picnic basket and blanket back out- if you missed this craft we have a DIY on our website blog, along with a lot of other craft ideas and how-to blogs ☺️
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#williammorrismonth #williammorris #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #picnicbasket #craftideas #craftidea #fabriccraft #fabricstore #fabricshoppingonline #fabricstash
🍓 William Morris Month Day 14 🍓 Strawberry Thief was inspired by William Morris’s watching the thrushes under the strawberry nets at the stunning @kelmscottmanor 🌿 May Morris conjured up this scene when speaking of the design, “You can imagine my Father going out in the early morning and watching the rascally thrushes at work on the fruit beds and telling the fanned who growls ‘I’d like to wring their necks!’ that no bird in the garden must be touched. There were certainly more birds than strawberries in spite of attempts at protection. And the walls of the little dining-room are hung with this note of the June garden and the little lords of it.” 🍓 What a lovely insight into the Morris family life! 🥰
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#williammorris #williammorrismonth #williammorrisdesign #williammorrisfabric #williammorrisfabrics #fabric #strawberrythief #floraldesign #maymorris