Design Classic: Blue + White
I have a massive design crush on anything blue and white. It's such a classic combination and can be found in pretty much any style of design: traditional, country cottage, mid-century modern, etc. It just looks good!
The combination of blue and white probably stems from what we think of today (at least in the UK) as willow pattern china. Chinese white porcelain pieces, with blue and white scenic patterns and floral motifs, had been exported from China to Europe as early as the 16th century. Blue and white Delft tiles, which are seen as iconically Dutch, were actually inspired by Chinese porcelain.
In England, Queen Anne famously loved blue and white china, and England's obsession with Chinoiserie was further fanned by Prince George's obsession with the style during the Regency period. Later, British potteries started created their own versions of the classic blue and white designs, so popular along the upper classes, on cheaper earthenware, making the obsession with Chinese porcelain accessible for the aspiring middle classes. Enter Britain's obsession with willow pattern!
My Nanny and Grandpa got married in Hong Kong and lived there for a few years. I always remember seeing their collection of blue and white ginger pots sitting on the hallway table, and the light blue Wedgewood jasperware on Nanny's dressing table. So delicate and elegant, these colours have always stuck with me.
Here are some of my favourite blue and white fabrics, with other pretty things. Do you like blue and white as much as me?
Clockwise from top left: Blue Posies by me! Available on Spoonflower; Dotted Floral Fabric by Rebecca Atwood; Les Touches by Brunschwig & Fils; Mandarin Ginger Jar from OKA; Oriel Blue heavy linen by Imogen Heath, Iznik by Rapture & Wright; Forest linen by Molly Mahon; Camona by Anna Spiro; Mathilda linen blend by Abigail Borg; Large Star and Leaves Tray from Wicklewood.