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While the Victorian period was filled with heaviness and dark colours, the Edwardian era brought in a subtle shift in styles. With a new ruler on the throne, more cheerful and lighter interiors were in demand – perhaps indicative of a more modern approach as a young king took to the throne. As you look through our collection of Edwardian furniture, you'll see feminine, playful styles using materials such as bamboo and wicker – lighter and more delicate choices of wood than before.
Edwardian furniture: a distinctive stylethat lasted only nine years. Blood groups had just been discovered, the Wright brothers made their first sustained flight and there were huge advancements in technology – some households were installing electricity, and even telephones. King Edward VII was a follower of fashion and the arts, and his association with the opulent, glamorous, leisured elite caused strains with his mother Queen Victoria, but had a huge influence on fashion and interior when he came to power. The Edwardian period looked away from the traditional and conservative styles of yesteryear and to a new, relaxed yet forward-thinking era.
Floral patterns and pastel colours took the Edwardian period away from the previously popular gothic look. It was an era not only influenced by King Edward VII's lifestyle, but by the Art Nouveau and Arts and Crafts movements, and the Queen Anne style also began to make a comeback, 200 years after her reign.
Even if you aren't familiar with the Edwardian period, you'll recognise a lot of the names associated with it. William Morris also a huge artistic influence on this period, which you will see in the floral patterns on furniture and other interiors. His lifespan was prior to the beginning of the Edwardian period, but his influence was still strong years after his death. You may not recognise the name Louis Comfort Tiffany - but you will know his most highly coveted design: the Tiffany lamp. Favoured by the wealthiest in society, the Tiffany lamp was a striking edition to the Edwardian era. Cartier and Faberge made their name during this time too, so it's plain to see that the arts had a huge moment in this period. The upper classes were certainly treated to an array of beautiful furnishings and accessories.
Even now, you can see the power of the Edwardian period in contemporary designs. The richness and floral decor seen in during the Edwardian period carries a homely feel, and functions well in many homes today. It is also worth noting that Edwardian furniture is considered a genuine antique, as it is just over 100 years old. What a wonderful thing to have an authentic antique in your home for you to enjoy.
Large-scale manufacturing was taking off in Great Britain by the Edwardian period, so we see furniture in this collection that has a mix of machine-made and hand-made. Unlike today, manufacturing still had plenty of human involvement, and you will be able to see that in all of our Edwardian furnishings.