Maybe you can’t marry someone with 5,000 a year and his own castle, but you can own a new edition of Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, or Emma with a cover designed for the original wallpaper in Jane Austen’s house, reports Town & Country (but mostly country). Handsome enough to tempt you?
The Jane Austen house museum (which I feel the filmmakers gestured at in choosing the cottage for Jack Black rom-com vehicle The Holiday) shared “fragments” of the original wallpaper with Hamilton Weston, a wallpaper company, which then restored three designs. You can buy the wallpaper, or you can sit in your parlor (parlour) with Macmillan’s wallpaper-edition classics pondering domesticity and primogeniture.
The designs are “Chawton leaf,” named for the dining room in which Austen wrote her novels in Chawton Hampshire; the yellow “Chawton vine,” which looks like something you’d find on Anthropologie circa 2023, I’m a fan; and the “JAHM Apprentice Ribbon Trellis & Chawton Rosebud Moire” worked up from fragments of the “family room shutter box,” which is, I have learned, a fancy way of saying window blinds, and not some kind of Gothic velvet put-your-hand-in-and-guess-what-you’re-touching contraption.
Per the Jane Austen House Museum, the story of how the house came into the Austen family reads a lot like the plot of Sense and Sensibility (originally Elinor and Marianne):
In 1769 the House was purchased by the Knight family, distant relatives of the Austens, and became part of their Chawton estate, occupied by the bailiff. When Mr and Mrs Knight did not have children of their own, they formally adopted Jane’s brother Edward as their heir.
In 1809, Edward offered his mother and sisters this small house on his Chawton estate. They moved here in July 1809, together with their friend Martha Lloyd. Together, they formed a stable and comfortable female household.
How’s my novel going? I haven’t actively given up, so 10/10, I’d wallpaper my study in a Chawton vine in case it helped.
[h/t Town & Country]