At Figg Street Co., our love of William Morris' designs is constant. However, it really feels fitting as we approach autumn. His motifs, which are inspired by nature, are a beautiful and cozy way to bring the outdoors in when breezes return and the evening air becomes crisp.  

There's an endurance to natural designs. So it comes as no surprise that stationery based on William Morris, the Arts & Crafts movement, and Art Nouveau persist in popularity.

While William Morris has influenced many aspects of design, including the decoration of interiors and textile patterns, we love how accessible and portable his works are on paper. Regardless of the size or style of your home, any of us can experience the magic of Morris through a notebook or card. These forms are also easily shared with others.

The Arts & Crafts movement is closely tied to the name of William Morris. However, his work also gave birth to Art Nouveau.

Art Nouveau is an international style of decorative art and architecture popular during much of the Belle Epoque period, at the turn of the 19th to 20th centuries.

Art Nouveau went by different names in different regions. However, there were common elements throughout, including its link to nature. Floral and plant motifs were often used and graphic designs were typically organic. Curved lines were used rather than straight edges. This made sense, since Art Nouveau was seen as the antithesis of the industrial aesthetic.

However, while the English Arts & Crafts movement was clearly anti-industrial in its origin (and it gave rise to Art Nouveau), Art Nouveau was more of a reaction to historic and academic art. This new movement was about blurring and even erasing the line between fine and applied arts.

Cities that were central to Art Nouveau, and which have architecture in this style include:

  • Brussels (e.g. Hôtel Tassel)
  • Paris (e.g. entrances to the Métro)
  • Turin (e.g. Cit Turin neighbourhood)
  • Palermo (e.g. Villa Virginia Caruso)
  • Glasgow (e.g. The Glasgow School of Art)
  • Munich (e.g. Adam and Eve's House)
  • Barcelona (e.g. Palau de la Música Catalana)

Popular Art Nouveau artists include:

  • Alphonse Mucha
  • Hector Guimard
  • Victor Horta
  • Louis Majorelle
  • René Lalique
  • Louis Comfort Tiffany (for whom Tiffany stained glass lamps are named)

We hope that you enjoy art and design as much as we do, and that you're able to live with what you love every day.

September 19, 2023 — Antoinette D'Angelo

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