Friday, March 18, 2011

Japan Around the Turn of the 20th Century


A memorial for the people, pets and wild life of the Japan disaster.








Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Victorian Books from The Dusty Bookcase

The Dusty Victorian is home to a private library of nearly 5,000 books and with it comes a librarian/archivist/Canadiana expert/husband, at my service. The bookcases at the DV contain Brian's extensive collection of books and The Dusty Bookcase is his blog. Needless to say, his books are his proud possessions and whether they are of great or little value, he treats them all with much respect. He also believes that a book is meant to be read and if damage occurs during the reading process, well it may have lost a bit of value, but the mind is richer for having read it.

Being who I am, I asked him to pull out some nice looking books from the Victorian era, never mind the content or who wrote it. (Poor Brian, he did not marry a kindred intellectual). The covers were either made of linen or leather, often painted and embossed with charming scrolls and/or illustrations typical of the time. Dust jackets, before the 20th century, were non-decorative, minimally descriptive and often discarded before being placed on the bookseller's shelf. They were really only meant for advertising and/or protecting the ornately decorated book during transportation. Made of paper and fragile by nature, a Victorian book with its original dust jacket is extremely rare and if found, should belong in a museum.

I encourage you to click on the images to see in detail, the intricate illustrative work.












A related post on Victorian Law Books from way back.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Study

Pam from The Eastlake Victorian, reminded me, with her great post on wall papers, that another room at The Dusty Victorian needed to be shown. After the library, the dining room and the parlour/art studio, all three being intricately wall papered, the study is next.

Located in the tower part of the house on the upper level, it has a North-western exposure. The previous owners re-designed this room adding three built-in bookcases with drawers and cupboards at the bottom. They also added oak wood panelling and finished the room nicely with wall and ceiling paper. The richness, warmth and visual weight of the wood floors and wall panelling needed detailing at the top to balance it out.


Brian usually works downstairs in the library, but the library also serves as our family room and when it gets too noisy, he goes to his man cave, the study.


This oak desk was his grandfather's; it's perfect for this room.

The study also serves as an extra guest room with a single bed. I need to find the perfect bedding set, but this will do for now.

When we first started to look for a house, we came across so many old homes that had atrocious wallpaper form the 70s and 80s. I was completely turned off by it, even as wallpaper was making a strong comeback in the world of interior design. When we saw the Dusty Victorian, it was a whole different matter. Fifteen years after its application, the paper shows no signs of deterioration. Quality wall paper, tastefully selected in accordance to the vintage of the house and professionally applied, is worth the investment. I'm glad I was not the one making that initial investment, but I'm certainly glad I can appreciate it.