Friday, 17 August 2012

Rediscovering an old love.....

A trip to Cragside last month has revived a passion for Chinoiserie and Japonisme. In 1st year at CCAD, we did a project based on these themes and I fell in love with it. I loved the woodblock prints especially and the patterns on kimonos. The inlaid work on tiny boxes and the porcelain were also inspiring. I've also been given two books by work with beautiful woodblock prints in with their soft tones and lovely detail. I could look at those for hours.

The wallpaper in the buttery at Cragside is beautiful and reminded me of the vases and tiles I'd researched at the V & A and also at the Oriental museum in Durham. The combination of white and soft cream soften this otherwise busy pattern. If you look carefully there is some lovely detail in this two colour print.

 I must get my pictures out from these trips and find that book I should have bought ages ago and buy it! Then try out some new chinoiserie patterns out.

Walking along the rock garden I spotted these beauties, I love the lollipop type flower and sadly I don't know what its called, but it has a Japanese feel to it as does the flower below it with its glorious purple/maroon tones.

So once I've got the house straight after decorating the sitting room, I'll be getting the pictures out and ordering that book and immerse myself in all things oriental.........lovely :-)


  1. Hi its funny how a visit somewhere brings back memories of things studied previously. I was looking through my old sketchbooks and had forgotten about lots of things that could provide inspiration. My husband thinks the top plant may be persiciaria and the bottom one astrantia if that is any help. I love the colours too and the papery quality of the leaves. jayne x

  2. Cragside is lovely, isn't it. Festival of quilts this week - second visit tomorrow - tiring but inspirational. Have you googled Pollie and Gary Uttley? They screenprint on clay and assemble section to look like garments. Have a look.

  3. Thank you both,and thank you Jayne for the names of the plants I'll have to try and remember them for next time.

    Anne I'll look up Pollie and Gary if sounds fascinating. Hope you enjoyed the rest of your time at the festival of quilts.