Tuesday, 5 February 2013

An Arts & Crafts Day Out

Following the recent Tate Britain Pre-Raphaelites exhibition (which I thought was ace), I've been on a bit of a Victoriana tip. And so, last week I took a little trip to the William Morris Gallery in Walthamstow. Now, we all know how fab Walthamstow is for fabric shopping. You only have to see the great textile scores that Karen from Did You Make That? makes on a regular basis to know that it's a total mecca for sewing lovers. But if you can tear yourself away from the shopping, the gallery is well worth a visit.

As a graphic designer by day, I loved all the typography dotted about the building, as well as that that Morris himself designed for his printing venture, Kelmscott Press.

But of course, the real stars of the show are the fabrics and wallpapers with Morris's distinctive and beautiful patterns. Morris aimed to colour all his fabrics with natural dyes and spent ten years perfecting the process, which is amazing when you see the vibrancy and depth of colour in real life.

All in all I'd definitely recommend a visit, despite the fact that the gallery doesn't have a guide book for sale. What a missed opportunity, I love a guide book! It's not a huge gallery, so a couple of hours is enough to have a good wander round and a cup of tea in the cafe afterwards, leaving plenty of time for those fabric shops on the way back to the station...