Edwardian Period (1900 - 1910)
The Edwardian era saw the beginning of a new century with a new king and a new style of interior design. The heavy, dark, cluttered look of the Victorian era was gone, and in its place, something much lighter and more cheerful.
Some of the most famous designer for this era include:
Thomas Sheraton -furniture
Louis Comfort Tiffany- lighting
René Lalique- glassware
This early 20th century style had an eclectic feel to it, and drew from elements of Georgian, Medieval and Tudor style. Light, airy, and simplicity of detail were key principles of this era.
Bamboo and wicker was the material of preference in Edwardian times. This added to the already delicate and breezy nature of the style. Other furniture was reproductions, drawing influence from baroque, rococo and empire style. The wing chair is a classic shape, and upholstery favoured chintz and damask in pale colours.
Shifting away from the darkness of the Victorian interior, colours were fresh and light, with an informal feel. Patterns were feminine, with flowers and floral designs being highly favoured. Colours were predominantly pastels: blue, lilacs, greens, yellows and grays. The floral theme was complemented by the liberal use of fresh flower arrangements. Living rooms often took darker colours such as dark green for fabrics, complemented with cream walls.
Thomas Sheraton - 18th century furniture designer, once characterized mahogany as "best suited to furniture where strength is demanded as well as a wood that works up easily, has a beautiful figure and polishes so well that it is an ornament to any room in which it may be placed." Matching his words to his work, Sheraton designed much mahogany furniture. The qualities that impressed Sheraton are particularly evident in a distinctive pattern of wood called "flame mahogany."
The flame figure in the wood is revealed by slicing through the face of the branch at the point where it joins another element of the tree.
is decorative artistry where pieces of material (such as wood, mother of pearl, pewter, brass silver or shell) of different colours are inserted into surface wood veneer to form intricate patterns such as scrolls or flowers.
The technique of veneered marquetry had its inspiration in 16th century Florence. Marquetry elaborated upon Florentine techniques of inlaying solid marble slabs with designs formed of fitted marbles, jaspers and semi-precious stones. This work, called opere di commessi, has medieval parallels in Central Italian "Cosmati"-work of inlaid marble floors, altars and columns. The technique is known in English as pietra dura, for the "hardstones" used: onyx, jasper, cornelian, lapis lazuli and colored marbles. In Florence, the Chapel of the Medici at San Lorenzo is completely covered in a colored marble facing using this demanding jig-sawn technique.
Techniques of wood marquetry were developed in Antwerp and other Flemish centers of luxury cabinet-making during the early 16th century. The craft was imported full-blown to France after the mid-seventeenth century, to create furniture of unprecedented luxury being made at the royal manufactory of the Gobelins, charged with providing furnishings to decorate Versailles and the other royal residences of Louis XIV. Early masters of French marquetry were the Fleming Pierre Golle and his son-in-law, André-Charles Boulle, who founded a dynasty of royal and Parisian cabinet-makers (ébénistes) and gave his name to a technique of marquetry employing shell and brass with pewter in arabesque or intricately foliate designs.