Art & collections
The art of marbling
In the mid‐17th century, decorated papers began to be used to add a splash of colour to book bindings. This example from c.1745 is known as Dutch Curl.
Printed using wooden blocks, this decorated paper known as bronzefirnispapier (bronze varnish paper) mimics 18th-century brocades and damasks.
Paper decoration techniques were also used to decorate the edges of books, as seen in this multi-volume set of David Hume's History of England.
Combed marbled paper
In the 19th century marbled paper designs became more adventurous and elaborate. This technique is known as combed marbled paper.
Learn more about the history and use of decorative papers in English and European book binding trade on our collections website.
Explore our collections
The majority of objects in our care are recorded on our National Trust Collections website. You'll find many intriguing items to explore at places near you