Nice Find: The Art Decorator – The Electrotype Company London

My vintage image hunt came up trumps recently with this purchase from a Kentish Town charity shop.

The Art Decorator - The Electrotype Company London

The Art Decorator – The Electrotype Company London

The Art Decorator is a volume of ‘designs in colour’ for ‘Art workers’.

It’s a rather splendid portfolio of prints and plates from the late 1890s showing an array of illustrations used for ornament and decoration.  Many styles are present with a huge European influence.

Alongside patterns and details there are also full colour portrait plates like this stunning peacock.

Peacock Panel by J Beckmann

There are also gold-leafed illustrations for everything from menus to door panels…

and this fantastic Cyclamen and Butterflies design for a fan…


The volume contains 60 large plates altogether.  They are all loose inside the hard cover and I was pleased to discover that this was a complete set.  I have only managed to find one other copy online and it has pages missing.  The dilemma now is what to do with it… As I have a rare full set, I am loathe to split it up, even if some framed pages would look fantastic.  I’m toying with the idea of scanning them all and uploading them to an art resource website.  There’s lots of inspiration here…

Charity shops have undoubtedly become less-fruitful in terms of a genuine vintage find but it’s items like this which show you should never give up the hunt!  Keep going 🙂


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