Visit to Kelmscott Manor

Visit to Kelmscott Manor

19 Jul 2022

As an art lover, if you haven’t already visited Kelmscott Manor, it must be on your wish list. On 22nd June, 46 members of The Arts Society North Bucks decided to tick off this particular item. It didn’t disappoint; the atmosphere is enchanting. Although it is called a ‘Manor’, the house and garden form a charming domestic setting.  William Morris called it his "Heaven on earth".

Which of us these days would have patterned wallpaper, curtains, carpet, and even bedcover, all in different designs? Highly unlikely – and yet in this William Morris home, the quality of all the designs and the artistry displayed ensure that the effect is calm and harmonious, with soft and welcoming colours in the famous Morris designs.  You can just imagine yourself relaxing with a book in a comfy armchair by the inglenook fireplace.

It might be difficult to concentrate with the skills and talent in abundance: the stunning painting of The Blue Silk Dress by Rossetti, for example, showing Janey Morris in a dress she made herself. William Morris' own bedroom has a four-poster bed with one of his poems embroidered into the valance by his daughter May.  One of the most striking pieces of furniture is an ebonised wood settle with a curved back with leather panels painted by Philip Webb, there are tapestries by Morris and others, and of course Morris' fabric designs are displayed in abundance.

Kelmscott Manor is in Oxfordshire and has limited opening hours so check before visiting. 

About the Author

Felicity Head


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