Modern Victorian style
Victoriana has remained a hugely influential trend within contemporary design.
In some ways it is a more difficult look to emulate than many of its English predecessors, because it was so disparate – by Victorian times the world had become considerably wider, meaning that designers could draw on Oriental and European ideas, particularly those emanating from France.
While some of the stuffier elements of Victorian design can be somewhat saccharine to the contemporary palette, the cleaner, more relaxed approach that broke through with the Arts and Crafts school remain extremely impressive.
Especially when these are combined with the attractive patterns used on Art Nouveau tiling, they can be a fantastic addition to any home whatever the approach taken with the rest of the property’s design.
At J Rotherham, we utilise the best of modern technology combined with traditional craftsmanship to recreate the best in Victorian design. To learn more about our Victorian-style fire surrounds, contact us today.
The Victorian style
In terms of literature and culture, one factor in the continuing popularity of Victoriana is how similar their world was to ours. While there are many obvious differences, we share many of the same concerns – and this is reflected in the architecture and design of the time, which remains popular.
Victorian homes were known for their high levels of polish and decoration. This was the period when ornaments became extremely popular in British homes, as well as intricately-patterned tiles and wallpaper.
The fireplaces can be (roughly) divided into early and late-period designs.
For the former, a typically complex approach was often combined with floral themes. The latter, however, tend to showcase a considerably cleaner, simpler look that can be easier to combine with modern decor.
Arts and Crafts movement
An intriguing factor in the development of Victorian fireplaces and fire surrounds was the influential Arts and Crafts movement, which began in Britain in around 1880.
Born out of a concern for the encroachment of industrialisation on ordinary life, some of its leading proponents included the theorist and critic John Ruskin and the designer, writer and activist William Morris.
Because of its focus on the natural world and handicrafted material, the movement – which went on to generate a recognisable style – encouraged fireplace designers to produce open hearths suitable for burning wood in an attractive fashion. However, coal remained an important fuel in this period.
A French-born style that emerged across the world between 1890 and 1910, Art Nouveau played a major role in Victorian design, as well as influencing artists throughout the continent.
In terms of household style, particularly fireplaces, its approach is mostly seen in the stylish tiles that have been added to many Victorian hearths. Reclaimed versions of these can be found from specialist dealers, although it is often simpler to go with modern homages.