Elementary: how to assemble an English-style interior
English design in clothing and interior can not be confused with any other. Foggy Albion has long stirred the minds of fashionistas and decorators with the ability to combine rationality and chic. Austerity in the choice of materials and a craving for refined luxury create a fabulous atmosphere of Victorian England, which today will take root both in a country house and in a city apartment. We will learn how the English style was born in the interior and what metamorphoses it has undergone, reaching our days.
History of the formation of the interior in the English style
Respectable British style began to take shape in the second half of the 19th century, when the romantic Puritan Victoria ascended the throne. For the country, the period of its rule was a Golden age: the social order was changing, science and art were developing, and the values of the middle class came to the fore: practicality, thrift and good manners.
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If the interior can be determined exactly in what year and in the Wake of what fashion trends it was created, then there are a couple of former trends in the space that have already irritated everyone’s eyes.
Production became manufactory, mechanical machines appeared, and furniture ceased to be a luxury item. Well-to-do families have elaborate interiors and amenities, including a bath and a bidet. For families with incomes above the average, master cabinetmakers worked, making furniture masterpieces from noble woods.
During military campaigns, the British observed the customs of the natives, their manner of decorating homes. The British brought tea from India, ivory from Africa, and did not forget about ceramics, carpets, and jewelry.
So in the interiors of Prim Anglicans settled authentic Oriental prints, elephant figures, patterned boxes and embroidered bedspreads, which eventually became an integral part of the British style.
Components of the English style in the interior
You will recognize the English living room at a glance: you will be met by striped or checkered fabric Wallpaper. Also popular are prints with heraldic lilies and floral motifs. The walls can remain plain, dark or light, but must be decorated with moldings. Option for a country house-natural stone.
Noble materials are welcome: walnut and bog oak, mahogany and rosewood. Coffered ceilings are held in high esteem.
Drapery and carpets will give the room a welcoming, cozy look. Motifs on textiles are mostly plant-based, and Paisley and Oriental ornaments, which have recently come back into fashion, are relevant.
Cherry and purple, dark emerald and shades of brown-colors that will give the interior the charm of old British apartments.
The climate of England is far from perfect: high humidity and drafts motivate ladies and gentlemen to stay close to the fireplace. This necessity gave birth to the Victorian “chair with ears”, also known as the”wing chair”. The high back of the chair protects against draughts, and the wing-armrests keep the heat coming from the fireplace.
The interior of the house in the English style assumes a massive, solid furniture. A carved antique and Chesterfield sofa with quilted upholstery and decorative buttons will fit seamlessly into the ensemble.
In its leather incarnation, Chesterfield will become a Central element in the brutal British interior without ruffles and flowers.
Toilet tables are usually round, but can be of other geometric shapes. Wooden countertops, in the case of extreme solvency of the owner of the house – marble. Ashtrays, vases, and table lamps with fringed embroidered shades stand on the tables.
Curtains should be long, heavy, plain or in wide stripes. They can be combined with thinner lace curtains a few shades lighter and decorative cords with tassels.
The interior in English style is an abundance of textiles. Plaids and blankets, bedspreads and decorative pillows will give the atmosphere softness and reduce the degree of stiffness.
On the walls of the English living room, you will certainly see a lot of family photos and paintings on the walls. Motives-hunting scenes, portrait painting, still life.
And, of course, it is difficult to imagine an Englishman’s house without a fireplace and an impressive library. The library can occupy a separate room or part of the office, living room: the main thing is that the library area looks cozy, easy carelessness in sorting book formats and genres is welcome. If a globe and a telescope are among the bookshelves, the atmosphere of a 19th-century London apartment is assured.
The interior in the British style at home
To turn your own home or apartment into a corner of English comfort, you do not have to strictly adhere to the classics. It is enough to catch the spirit, to catch the feeling.
If you want to make the situation as “English” as possible, pay attention to the British-style interior, where the famous detective Sherlock Holmes lived.
The creators of the film “the adventures of Sherlock Holmes” so accurately recreated the situation of the apartment on Baker street, that the curators of the house-Museum of Sherlock in London said that the interior was authentic to the smallest detail.
The BBC’s Sherlock series illustrates the metamorphosis of British interior design and demonstrates how to combine Victorian motifs with modern designer finds. Wallpaper with a large heraldic print can take up only one wall. Minimalism successfully emphasizes the main components of the style. In a modern English interior, coffered ceilings are still appropriate, and you can put parquet or imitation laminate on the floor.
A rocking chair, a small library, stylized furniture, or, on the contrary, modern elements like the Bauhaus Sherlock chair will fit seamlessly into the space to dilute the Gothic flair and banish the Canterville Ghost from the room when it comes to tea.
A real fireplace can be replaced with an electric model or a decorative false fireplace. Put the “chair with ears” opposite and the image is ready!