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Arts & Crafts

Picking up on the styles and philosophies of William Morris and Charles Renie Macintosh, the American Arts & Crafts movement offered a total way of life-grounded first and foremost in the design of the home and its furnishings.

The Arts & Crafts ideal stressed simplicity, natural materials like wood and brass, and a return to individual craftsmanship-as opposed to the newly dominant methods of mass production. Ornament in Arts & Crafts pieces is limited, and when present, it is meant to echo the function and construction techniques of the piece.

Arts & Crafts pieces were made between about 1895 to 1915 in the U.S. They are based on heavy, rectilinear forms balanced by exquisite details that serve to visually lighten their lines. Visible tenons connect parts of a chair, and Corbel brackets reinforce joints to create graceful profiles. Open parallel slats abound, and stained glass is a staple of Arts & Crafts lamps and home design, contrasting the stability of wood with the soothing presence of air and light.