"Have nothing in your houses which you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful."
~William Morris (1836-1896)
Born in Walthamstow, Essex, on March 24, 1836, William Morris was the son of a wealthy businessman. As such, he enjoyed a comfortable childhood before going to Marlborough and Exeter, Oxford.
By the 1860s, the multi-talented Morris decided that his creative future lay in the field of the decorative arts. His career as a designer began when he decorated the Red House, Bexleyheath, which had been built for him by Phillip Webb. Morris formed Morris, Marshall, Faulkner & Co. in 1861. The firm (later renamed Morris & Company) was particularly well-known for its stained glass, examples of which can be seen in churches throughout Britain. Morris produced dozens of designs that are often characterized by intricate intertwining fruit, flower, and foliage patterns.
In 1890, Morris founded the Kelmscott Press near his last home at Kelmscott House in Hammersmith. Inspired by Italian Renaissance and medieval German typography, Morris designed three typefaces for the Press: Golden, Chaucer, and Troy. More than sixty-six volumes were printed by the Kelmscott Press, the most impressive of which was its magnificent edition of Chaucer which was published in 1896.
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Find out more about Morris HERE.
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