Creating the Standen Collection

*This exhibition is now finished but you can still see the commissioned wallpapers in the Servants' Hall and Butlers' Pantry at Standen.* Designers Peter Thwaites and Rebecca Aird have been commissioned to create a collection of modern hand-printed fabrics and wallpapers for Standen, using inspiration gathered by visitors, volunteers and staff.

As part of the National Trust’s contemporary arts programme, Trust New Art, the designers have created a collection of three wallpapers and fabrics that will be used as bespoke furnishings for parts of the house, reflecting the ethos of Standen’s architect Philip Webb and textile designer William Morris, whose designs can be seen in many of the rooms.

Webb’s views on the design for a contemporary house in 1894 are comparative to the principles of Peter and Rebecca’s design studio, Rapture & Wright, where they combine designs for the present with the best craftsmanship and materials.

" By taking the design process out of our usual studio and involving other people (visitors, volunteers and staff) we hope to inject new life into our creative process and think more about how we might work collaboratively in the future. "
- Peter Thwaites & Rebecca Aird
The Design Studio takes shape at Standen
The design studio takes shape
The Design Studio takes shape at Standen

Through designing, producing and installing a bespoke collection in situ, Peter and Rebecca will draw attention to the ethos behind the making of Standen and its evolution as a forever-changing family home. 

The commissioned wallpaper has been hung in the newly refurbished Servants’ Wing, an area where there is little historical information regarding decoration and furniture. Textiles are placed in various rooms throughout the house.

Visitors, volunteers and staff have been getting involved in the gathering of information and inspiration for the final designs via social media, blogging or by filling in a postcard on their visit.

" This is an exciting project for visitors, volunteers and staff, at this time in the property’s history, to explore what they love at Standen and inspire a new collection."
- Ben Dale, House Manager at Standen House & Garden
The Standen Collection in the newly restored Butlers' Pantry at Standen
Standen Collection Butlers Pantry
The Standen Collection in the newly restored Butlers' Pantry at Standen

In May, the newly opened Servants' Hall became a ‘design studio’; a place for staff, volunteers and visitors to get together and discuss ideas and techniques. In setting up the design studio the artists began to collect stories and images, engaging the visiting public to feed into the design process as they developed ideas into finished fabrics and wallpapers.

From September, visitors will be able to trace the design journey of The Standen Collection, which they will have discovered distributed throughout the house, reflecting the journeys through the house taken by the staff who served the family.

See the Standen Collection exhibition from Saturday 9 September 2017 to Friday 27 April 2018. You can follow and contribute to the project on social media throughout the year on Instagram @standencollection or by tagging photographs on social media sites with the hashtag #StandenCollection.

The Standen Collection