Wed, Sep 2 2009
Just 6 miles from our home is one of the most captivating and beautiful houses open to the public. That is, of course, in my opinion! This wondrous place is Kelmscott Manor, once home to William Morris and his wife Jane. I am ridiculously emotional, at which John laughs at me, but being in this kind of inspiring environment really moves me. But even more so does the fact that part of William Morris' life was spent with the Pre-Raphealite brotherhood. These eccentric characters were pure genius in their portrayal of myths, legend and also beautiful women.
The house is filled with paintings by Rosetti and Burne-Jones along with tapestries and fabrics of Morris design.
The manor itself, though quite basic in its furnishings is set in the most eloquent of surroundings with beautiful gardens along side the river. From one of the windows, we spotted a quite large tree with what looked like berries growing. Upon investigation we found this to be a mulberry tree, of which I have never seen growing before. The berries that protrude from under the large green leaves look like great big raspberries. What an amazing addition to your garden.
Morris took so much inspiration from nature, with designs such as strawberry thief and willow
that to be at Kelmscott really fills you with some of the emotion this visionary must have felt.
Not only can you look upon fabric and paintings but there is furniture, clothing and very importantly a little recipe book mentioning hotpot and 2 bean soup!
The kitchen was relatively small with no real structure owing to the fact that there was not much for the restoration team to go on. But if you stand for a moment, and use your own imagination, it is simple to paint your own picture of these wayward gentlemen, living in this most beautiful home.