The Geffrye, Museum of the Home


136 Kingsland Road, London, E2 8EA

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We are now closed for redevelopment until Spring 2020. Keep in touch for ongoing news and events

We are now closed for redevelopment until Spring 2020. Keep in touch for ongoing news and events.

18th Century FloorsPage 2

By the middle of the century the most common form of floor-covering in parlours was a floorcloth, made of canvas treated with layers of oil-based paint to form a durable, smooth surface which could be easily washed clean. This was less expensive than a carpet or rug. Although there are printed designs of floorcloths from this period, they are in black and white only, and since very few actual pieces of floorcloth have been discovered, little is known of the patterns and colours available to the householder.

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'Various Kinds of Floor Decorations', by John Carwitham, 1739; pattern book.

© V & A Images/Victoria and Albert Museum, London