Eustis Estate

Parlor Sofa

Art historians use the term “stylized” to refer to designs that begin in nature but are transformed into something else. The reproduction fabric on this sofa, known as “Crown Imperial” and created in 1876 by English designer William Morris, uses trailing vines and turns them into repeating circles in a uniquely “stylized” fashion. Morris, a cornerstone of the Arts and Crafts Movement in England and America, was a master at turning natural subjects, whether plants or birds or rabbits, into repeating decorative elements. (Notice the birds in the nearby curtains, also a Morris design). The sofa belonged to the Eustis family and was likely made by the Boston furniture manufacturer A. H. Davenport.