With these types which show so much of beauty and grace of proportion may be contrasted our modern "Mission" furniture, where strength seems often to have been exaggerated to clumsiness. The original Morris furniture, bearing that name, is said to have been much lighter than the heavy pieces now found in the market.
Good lines, simplicity of construction, strength and appropriateness make for beauty in furniture as well as in architecture. The fashion swung from the gilt and gold chair, too ornamental for use and too poorly constructed to bear the weight of any human body except that of a child, to the other extreme of heavy "substantial" furniture, about as immovable and decorative as a log. Fortunately we are in a saner mood at present and are conscious of the fact that it is not only desirable but quite necessary that furniture be movable. Another delusion that is passing, too - may it continue to pass - is the fashion of "sets.' Often these three-piece and six-piece sets were a device for using up the remnants of upholstery and were often at variance with each other in regard to color. Many a misguided individual has bought two pieces of undesirable furniture with the one piece which really sold the "set".
ARM CHAIR From Furniture of the Olden Times.
SHERATON PAINTED CHAIR.
From Furniture of Olden Times.
But a better day is dawning. The public taste is demanding things that have more real elements of beauty. Henderson's words find a response in many minds. He says, "One must surround one's self with wholesome-ness and beauty. This parallelism between consciousness and nature makes this insistence upon convenience of arrangement and respect for form and color more than a matter of taste. It makes it a matter of moral obligation. A man's surroundings are not accidental. They are a part of himself and must likewise be chastened and purified. An ugly room, badly lighted, poorly ventilated, inadequately heated, must be regarded as morally reprehensible whether provided for one's self or for somebody else. It is the projection of an evil thought and, entering into consciousness, lowers the level of human life".
Comb Back Windsor Chair of Thomas Jefferson.