image CURRENT SLIDE PRESENTATION TOPIC: Interpreting the English Room



Superbly suited to its architectural shell, this charming, traditionally decorated room at the Menagerie reflects the unerring taste and imagination of English house historian Gervase Jackson-Stops.

Photograph by Christopher Simon Sykes

About The English Room

There is a certain distinctive look in home decoration that says “English,” an instantly recognizable style that is the result of diverse influences that have been adopted and adapted into English homes. In this book, Chippy Irvine considers important English interiors which epitomize all that is creative and inspiring in that unique aesthetic.

The town and country have long been the complementary aspects of life in England, and houses in both urban and rural settings are featured in this survey. THE ENGLISH ROOM takes you on a room-by-room exploration of the English home, contrasting town with country life, rooms designed for pleasure with those for more practical needs, and rooms meant to receive visitors with those that are private retreats. The interiors, influenced by the history of each house, are quirky yet sophisticated, inventive and dynamic. Terraces and verandas, patios and conservatories reflect a love of the outdoors that is an essential part of English living in both town and country. Chippy and Keith Irvine bring to life the history and changes in customs that have contributed to the creation of the English house.

Specially commissioned photographs by Christopher Simon Sykes illustrate this visual survey, from terraced town houses to a country rectory, from an imaginative warehouse conversion to a Regency villa. Country cottages and London flats, high-ceilinged sitting rooms and stone-flagged farmhouse kitchens, all conjure up that quintessential Englishness. Embracing work varying from the eighteenth-century ornamentation of William Kent, the first “interior decorator,” to the modern gravitas of John Fowler or the cosmopolitan freshness of David Hicks, THE ENGLISH ROOM shows how distinguished and delightful personal spaces can be created.

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