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Historic Decoration Study Days, in association with the HHA

Our study days aim to give you the opportunity to learn from the very best experts and specialists in their fields. Come along and expand your knowledge in the company of like-minded people.


Paints and Paintwork for the Historic Interior

Venue: Syon House 

Sunday 11th June 2017 - Edward Bulmer

Edward will discuss the lessons we can learn from the history of paint making, the use of pigment and the allocation of colour. He will show how by learning from historic decoration we can be better modern decorators too, using appropriate materials in an appropriate way. Colour that renders comfort, harmony and drama when it is called for!

Edward Bulmer has spent the last 30 years working in some of Britain’s finest buildings. He is a leading interior designer, architectural historian and ‘colourman’, renowned for restoring our heritage buildings, bringing his expert knowledge to conservation and his design flair to the creation of new spaces for modern living. 

Edward is a master in both the art and science of colour, an expert with a mission to revive the world of natural colour. He also has that technical knowhow to translate historic reference into paint shades perfectly tuned for fashionable modern living. Unlike virtually all other paints on the market, our colours are designed, made and mixed by an expert in interiors.

Book here

The Rise and Rise of Interior Decoration: England, France and America in the Twentieth Century and beyond.

Venue: Syon House

Monday 3rd July 2017 - Stephen Calloway

Morning Session 1 - From ‘Upholders’ to Interior Decorators: tradition, modernity and the rise of a new profession.

Morning session 2 - A Golden Age, 1930s-1950s: John Fowler and his friends and rivals.


Afternoon Session 1 - Modern Times: the ever-faster swing of the pendulum of taste. The Sixties, ‘The Country House Look’, Minimalism and some other trends.

Afternoon Session 2 - Tour of the house

Stephen Calloway is an art historian, curator and writer. From 1974-2013 he was a curator at the Victoria & Albert Museum, specialising in the fine and decorative arts of the nineteenth and early twentieth-century, with particular interest in the history of taste, collecting and interior decoration. 

He has curated many exhibitions at the V&A and elsewhere, including Aubrey Beardsley, the  centenary show in 1998, Rex Whistler: The Triumph of Fancy (Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, 2006) and The Cult of Beauty, the V&A’s major exhibition on the Aesthetic Movement (2011). 

In addition to exhibition projects, he divides his time between writing, lecturing and broadcasting, and is also been called upon as a consultant for period films and the arrangement of real interiors.  His books include Twentieth Century Decoration; The Elements of Style;  Baroque, Baroque: The Culture of Excess and Traditional Style: How to Recreate the Traditional Period Home.  In addition to scholarly articles, he also writes regularly for magazines including The World of Interiors and House and Garden.

Book here