Perpetuating the memory of one of the greatest figures of the Victorian age


Posted on September 4, 2020

Wey textile (on velvet)

This textile was produced in 1883 using the surface block printing method at Merton Abbey. The piece is a printed velveteen textile depicting a branch design of diagonally meandering stems with acanthus leaves and unopened chrysanthemum flowers, and with large red and yellow chrysanthemum open flowerheads, on a red background.

The pattern was designed by Morris in response to a 15th century velvet acquired by the South Kensington Museum in 1883. A strong diagonal pattern was typical of his wallpaper and textile designs around this period. It is one of 13 textile designs by Morris named after tributaries of the River Thames.