Can you help us conserve this historic design for future generations?
A highly significant item in the Society’s collection is in need of urgent conservation work in order for it to be preserved for the future and displayed safely. Your gift will help us raise the money to carry out this work.
This original design for wallpaper required eight blocks to print and is the only design for wallpaper by May Morris in the Society’s collection. Inscribed on the front in pencil are notes on the printing blocks and on the verso ‘Honeysuckle Wallpaper’ and ‘Mr Morris Esq’. There had been some uncertainty whether May or William Morris designed Honeysuckle as it differs to May’s other designs for wallpapers; Horn Poppy and Arcadia. However, the heavily worked pencil outlines and technique is characteristic of her designs and it was attributed to May Morris for the first time in c1910. Honeysuckle was available in four colourways for wallpaper, and the Society is fortunate to have all of these examples in its collection.
Honeysuckle is now in need of attention by a conservator. Over the years, strain on the frame has resulted in the mount slipping, recently causing the design to come into partial contact with the glazing. A full condition assessment report by an accredited paper conservator will be conducted, previous paper hinges removed and new hinges created, and light humidification carried out on areas of undulation. It is also vital that this unique design is remounted and re-framed in order for it to be safely displayed. All mounting materials will be acid-free and the conservation glazing with ultra violet filtering glass will protect this beautiful watercolour for the future.
The Society has been generously offered a donation of £750 towards this work, conditional on this amount being matched by members and other supporters. If we are successful in raising the money then we would like to display the reframed design besides related items from our collection such as examples of wallpapers printed from May’s designs. This could form the basis of a wonderful learning resource for our schools and family workshops.
Your gift will help us raise the money needed to carry out this work. Any amount, large or small, will help us reach our target and protect a key item in our collection for the future.
Please make a donation – the simplest way is by Paypal.
If you would prefer to donate by cheque, please send your cheque, made payable to The William Morris Society, to
The William Morris Society
26 Upper Mall
and mark your envelope ‘Honeysuckle Appeal’.
Please make any donations by 30 April 2018.
Thank you for your generosity and for supporting our work in spreading knowledge of William Morris and his circle to a wider audience.