Close friends with pre Raphaelite artists Edward Burne Jones and Dante Gabrielle Rossetti with whom and alongside other artists he co founded a decorative arts firm in 1861. Morris, Marshall, Faulkner and Co. Becoming Morris and Co. in 1875. Pre Raphaelite influence, apparent in his work. Designing tapestries, wallpaper, fabric, furniture and stained glass windows.
His first wallpaper design “Trellis” suggested by the rose trellis in the garden of his Bexley Heath home, which he designed. The house being part of the orchard, the orchard being part of the house. The first pattern issued was “Daisy” in 1864. Naively drawn meadow flowers – inspired by a wall-hanging illustration. These designs and the next “Fruit” (Pomegranate) have a medieval character – a clear link with Morris’ work with the Pre Raphaelites and demonstrating an interest in naturalism in ornament.
Morris took observational drawings from life but also from floral imagery. Never intending his designs to be literal transcriptions, more subtle stylised interpretations of.