Learn about Liberty & Co.
The world renowned department store Liberty, was originally founded in 1875 as a furniture and drapery shop in Regent Street, London and was known as "East India House".
The business was established by Arthur Lazenby Liberty, (1843-1917). As the original name of the shop suggests, there was a strong emphasis on Oriental & Moorish objects, furniture and fabrics as well as more traditional European items. Under the heading of "curios", he also sold Japanese bric-a-brac of all kinds.
East India House was one of the first major shops to stock extensively products of the Arts and Crafts movement. Goods subsequently produced for Liberty showed both Oriental and Arts and Crafts influence.
In 1884 Liberty opened a costume department and in 1885 a wallpaper department.
Liberty commissioned leading designers of the time to create carpets, ceramics, clothing, furniture, silver and wallpaper exclusively for them.
In 1889 Liberty opened a branch in Paris which was instrumental in exposing Europeans to English Art Nouveau style. more...