ROYAL PAVIL­ION SALOON GETS BEAU­TI­FUL AXMIN­STER CAR­PET

Devon Life - - Upfront -

It was dec­o­rated for King Ge­orge IV in 1823. Now the saloon room at Brighton’s Royal Pavil­ion has been re­stored to its for­mer glory with a fab­u­lous Axmin­ster car­pet.

The East Devon com­pany worked closely with dec­o­ra­tive artist Anne Sow­den and mem­bers of the Royal Pavil­ion & Mu­se­ums Foun­da­tion to recre­ate the orig­i­nal car­pet – a highly elab­o­rate and en­er­getic de­sign fea­tur­ing 20 drag­ons, 100 sun rays and 274 lo­tus leaves.

Anne Sow­den crafted an in­tri­cate, line-drawn and painted pat­tern which Axmin­ster Car­pets trans­lated to sup­port the weav­ing process.

The his­tory of the Pavil­ion is in­ex­tri­ca­bly bound to Axmin­ster Car­pets. The orig­i­nal car­pet was man­u­fac­tured by Thomas Whitty and it was vi­tal to the Pavil­ion mem­bers that the replica was made at the home of its orig­i­nal birth­place.

Gary Bridge, de­sign di­rec­tor at Axmin­ster Car­pets, says: “The Saloon is un­like any other project Axmin­ster Car­pets has had the priv­i­lege of work­ing on. In or­der to mas­ter and per­fect the au­then­tic­ity of the de­sign it was es­sen­tial to adopt the style and idio­syn­cra­sies of Robert Jones – orig­i­nal de­signer – and em­brace a new style of artistry with Anne’s del­i­cate treat­ment.”

The fin­ished car­pet is a gor­geous, kalei­do­scopic vi­sion of ori­en­tal colour and print.

Fab­u­lous fungi

Tree sur­geon Rob Bed­ward is sal­vaging all sorts of scrap plas­tic and me­tal to cre­ate mar­vel­lous mush­rooms.

It fol­lows on from a ear­lier busi­ness which saw Rob us­ing his chain­saw skills to carve wooden mush­rooms.

He ex­plains: “I gen­er­ally use resin fillers as an outer sur­face, the in­side skele­ton, or struc­ture can be made from any­thing such as mesh fan guards, steer­ing wheels, re­in­forc­ing irons, plas­tic

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