Swing low

tnum & Mason hammock 1936

A new de luxe garden Hammock this.  Fresh and lovely and sold by Fortnum & Mason in 1936. All pieces fully sprung, with pullman armrests between each cushion. The whole covered in ‘a new material in a beautiful and exclusive modern design.’  Slashes of red and camel zing across the surface, with what looks like a nice red fringing on the top and bottom of the hammock.

This postcard is a corker. The illustration (who needs photos?) making the most of the fabric repeat.  It is probably by W Hendy who designed the Fortnum things that Edward Bawden didn’t in the 1930s. There is not too much sense of the great untamed outdoors here, a bit of grass but nicely tamed and civilised. Thank goodness.

I wonder if that modern design of fabric is by Marion Dorn? She is better known for her strictly modernist rugs and weaves (including some masterly moquettes for London Underground) but her printed textile designs certainly weren’t far behind all that. Strong of repeat and bold in colour they were, which is what makes me wonder about this one.

Dorn was working on and off for Fortnum’s (wasn’t everybody?) both directly as Marion Dorn Designs Limited and through manufacturers like Warners and Donald Brothers fabrics. Her partner (it was such a scandal, dear) Edward McKnight Kauffer was doing some graphic things for them too. So it all makes sense, to me anyway.

I feel with these bits of furniture and a little seaside deco bide-a-wee, I might actually enjoy a bit of (my least favourite season) summer.



Hi i came across your blog/website via pin it in. i’m so amazed at the wealth of creativity out there. your web site looks really good. i like the way you have the titiles of previous posts. I have been off work since having an op and am finding I have a bit of time on my hands and have been reading a book calle Blog inc and a wordpress book to get some inspiration for my blog and perhaps to venture in to different areas eventually.
nice design.

shelf appeal

Thanks for the comments and best of luck filling in time blogging and reading blogs, can’t think of a nicer thing to do.


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