Rebecca Craig Interview
Take a look at our video of Rebecca Craig, Head of Design in the Sanderson studio. In her interview with Emilio at Decorex 2014, Rebecca talks about the inspiration behind the latest Sanderson collection, Fabienne.Read More
Arthur Sanderson establishes himself in 1860 Islington, London, as an importer of French wallpapers. Merchandise features expensive, luxurious wallpapers, such as the panoramic and imitation-leather papers manufactured by Paul Balin of Paris, for whom Sanderson is the sole agent in England.
Charles Dickens' Great Expectations is first published in serial form between December 1860 & August 1861.
Sanderson moves to Soho Square. The company is soon becoming known as one of the largest dealers in foreign goods in England.
Ford Madox Brown's painting Work is created, highlighting the social changes Victorian society is undergoing.
Sanderson moves to nearby 52 Berners Street in 1865. The firm continues to lease and develop showroom space along the street, remaining there until 1992. Sets of wallpaper for use below dado rail, as filling above it, with a frieze at the top become one of the eras key decorating aesthetics.
Arthur Sanderson begins having designs commission-printed by blockprinters in England.
The Suez Canal opens, linking the Red Sea and the Mediterranean.
George Eliot's Middlemarch is published.
Sanderson's oldest son, John, joins the firm.
Cragside in Northumberland, the home of one of the great Victorians, Lord Armstrong, is the first house in the world to install hydroelectric light.
Sanderson acquires land at Chiswick and builds a wallpaper factory.
The Zoopraxiscope, the first movie projector, is created by photographic pioneer Eadweard Muybridge.
Three of Arthur Sanderson's sons - John, Arthur Bengough and Harold - are involved in the business, now named Arthur Sanderson & Sons.
Arthur dies; years later he is 'still held in affectionate esteem by the whole of the decorating trade, many of whose members owe much to his assistance and advice'.
Japanese papers begin to be imported; within a few years papers are also being imported from Germany. The building boom in Britain greatly increases the demand for affordable wallpapers.
A four-story factory is built at Chiswick. Harold oversees production and design; he introduces freelance designers including A.F. Brophy, Christopher Dresser, George Haité , the Silver Studio and C.F.A. Voysey.
In January, the showroom occupies 53 Berners Street; by April 1901 the company has also leased 51-55; this confirms Sanderson as the largest wallpaper showroom in London. The Sanderson family home in Chiswick is donated to the town for use as a free library in 1898 when the family moves to Kensington.
Guglielmo Marconi travels to England with his radio communication apparatus and is introduced to Mr. (later Sir) William Preece, Engineer-in-Chief of the Post Office. Later this year he is granted the world's first patent for a system of wireless telegraphy.
Sanderson's Chiswick factory joins the Wall Paper Manufacturers Ltd (WPM), a joint stock combination intended to achieve a monopoly on wallpaper production. The WPM soon controls 98 per cent of the trade. By this period Sanderson is exporting to the British colonies and the USA.
The South Kensington Museum is expanded and renamed the Victoria and Albert Museum.
A. Sanderson & Sons becomes a limited company.
Puccini's Tosca premieres in Rome.
Queen Victoria dies and is succeeded by Edward VII.
A new factory designed by C.F.A. Voysey is built at the Chiswick works.
Claude Monet paints Water Lillies, the first in a series of approximately 250 oil paintings.
Olympic Games open in London.
Sanderson is advertising in colour, being one of the first companies to do so.
Sanderson acquires Charles Knowles & Co.; Sanderson introduces 'Post Impressionist' papers.
The firm's supply of Japanese papers is expanded with the purchase of remaining stock from Rottman & Co.
The First World War is triggered by the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria.
John Sanderson dies.
A textile-printing factory is established at Uxbridge, producing Sanderson's own range of fabrics, which had been commission-printed since 1914. These are first called 'Eton Rural Cretonnes' and later 'Eton Rural Fabrics'. The paint factory of Messrs Casson & Co. in Kensal Road, London, is purchased and the Berners Street showroom is expanded again.
Arthur Bengough Sanderson becomes the holder of a Royal Warrant as Purveyor of Wallpapers and Paints to King George V. This is said to be the first Warrant granted for the supply of these products.
John Logie Baird gives the first public demonstration of television.
Fire destroys the Chiswick factory.
Berners Street becomes part of the WPM. The WPM also takes over the Sanderson paint-making plant, which is developed into a WPM branch factory to serve the south of England.
Wall Street Crash signals the start of the Great Depression.
A new wallpaper factory is completed at Perivale. On a site covering eighty acres and with extensive facilities for sporting and social events, it is said to be the finest in the world and remains in company hands until 1973.
A collaboration with Disney Studios begins.
Arthur Bengough Sanderson retires.
Morris & Co. goes into voluntary liquidation. Sanderson buys the wallpaper business together with the rights to use the company name, acquiring blocks, logbooks and existing stock, including the entire contents of the Hanover Square showroom. Due to a massive paper shortage and rationing, no new Sanderson pattern books are issued from 1940 until 1950. The Sanderson factories meanwhile engage in war work.
VE day marks the end of World War II in Europe.
Sanderson is represented at the 'Britain Can Make It' exhibition held at the Victoria and Albert Museum, showing styles ranging from lush florals to papers with wood effects, figured spots and stripes.
Sanderson products appear in the Festival of Britain on London's South Bank, where the Royal Festival Hall is decorated exclusively with the company's papers. Imported textiles are introduced; among the fabrics are those with designs by Picasso and Gio Ponti. Royal Warrants are granted to the firm in 1951 and 1955. Sanderson launches a series of exhibitions at Berners Street in 1952, 1954 and 1956. Dersine Fancy Papers, introduced in 1935, are highly successful during the 1950s and 1960s.
Queen Elizabeth II succeeds her father George VI.
Sanderson celebrates its centenary in a long awaited new building at 58-60 Berners Street, designed by Slater & Uren (now The Sanderson Hotel). The occasion is marked with an exhibition and special collections at 'the world's most fabulous showrooms'. Ivan Sanderson becomes the chairman of the WPM at the end of that year.
A New Concept in Co-ordination - Triad, the ground-breaking co-ordinated Sanderson collection, is launched.
Turnbull & Stockdale is acquired by Sanderson. Consumers in this period become wealthier, younger and more interested in individualistic styles. Sanderson becomes part of the newly formed Reed International's Decorative Products Division. Spectrum Paint is introduced.
The 'Young Sanderson' range is introduced; stretch covers are also introduced in the same year.
Concorde takes off on its maiden flight.
Britain joins the EEC.
Sanderson of Berners Street opens as a retail operation in the revamped showroom.
Margaret Thatcher is elected as Britain's first female Prime Minister.
The first Options collection is launched.
At the peak of the fashion for the English country-house style, Sanderson opens its own decorators' showroom in New York.
The company celebrates its 125th anniversary with a revamped showroom and an exhibition. WestPoint Pepperell, Inc. of Georgia, USA, purchases Sanderson from Reed International.
WestPoint Pepperell is aggressively acquired by Farley Industries: in the following year Sanderson is sold to the largest textile manufacturer in the Netherlands, Gamma Holdings NV.
Tim Berners-Lee invents the World Wide Web.
The company establishes the Sanderson Gallery, a collection of home accessories, gifts, decorative products, travel goods, china and toys.
Berners Street is closed and a new Sanderson showroom and shop opens on Brompton Road in London's Knightsbridge. In 2001 it relocates to the Kings Road.
Sanderson has rapidly growing markets in Eastern Europe and the Pacific Rim. The Studio Sanderson collection of contemporary fabrics and wallpapers is launched, followed by three others.
A company quality policy is adopted, promising to provide 'outstanding service which ensures that good design is easily accessible to the Customer'. Uxbridge ceases manufacture at the end of December.
In August, Sanderson's new headquarters are established in Denham; seven months later, in March 2001, there is a management buyout.
In August, Sanderson goes into receivership; three weeks later it is purchased by Walker Greenbank plc. The Sanderson bedlinen license is sold to Bedeck Ltd.
Walker Greenbank invests heavily in product development and almost two years' worth of collections are launched in the second half of that year, culminating in the return of new Options collections in January 2005.
The Sanderson showroom relocates to Chelsea Harbour Design Centre.
Revenues increase by 25 percent.
In March Sanderson celebrates its 150th anniversary with a special collection of fabrics and wallpapers inspired by its archive, a three month-long exhibition at the Fashion and Textile Museum, London and a coffee table book written by Mary Schoeser and published by Thames & Hudson.
Sanderson is the oldest surviving English brand name in its field.