Head for heights required

Scaffolding in courtyard of Osterley House (image: Laura Brooks)

Scaffolding in courtyard of Osterley House (image: Laura Brooks)

Kate cleaning frieze whilst up scaffold in the Long Gallery at Osterley Park (image: Laura Brooks)

Kate cleaning frieze whilst up scaffold in the Long Gallery at Osterley Park (image: Laura Brooks)

We’ve had the scaffolding inside and outside of Osterley House lately.  Continue reading

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Insect checks

Bolster inspection by Lisa, Jo and volunteer (image: Laura Brooks)

Bolster inspection by Lisa, Jo and volunteer (image: Laura Brooks)

Us Brits are obsessed with the weather.  It’s a well-known fact.  Not to mention one of our favourite topics of conversation.  Continue reading

The Carpet and the Woolly Bears

Pest checking equipment - gloves, tweezers, magnifying glass and plastic bags to stick pests in, at Osterley Park (image: Laura Brooks)

Pest checking equipment – gloves, tweezers, magnifying glass and plastic bags to stick pests in, at Osterley Park (image: Laura Brooks)

Not quite Goldilocks and the Three Bears, I’ll grant you, but when looking at the Drawing Room carpet, we do sometimes wonder ‘who’s been eating our lovely Georgian carpet?’  Of course, the main culprit is going to be one of these (look away now if the sight of creepy crawly things unnerves you): Continue reading

Dobson and Van Dyck

House team standing by Van Dyck self-portrait in National Portrait Gallery.

Kirsty, Judith, Laura, Claire and Lizzie by Van Dyck self-portrait in National Portrait Gallery (image: Hajira Mahomed).

The house team recently visited the National Portrait Gallery in London, as above, where they saw the Van Dyck self-portrait that the Gallery and the Art Fund are campaigning to save for the nation.  The team, however, have a special link with this painting.

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Ssshh! No talking in the library!

Library in midst of winter clean.

Library at Osterley Park, during the winter clean (image: Laura Brooks)

Osterley is a house full of things to intrigue and excite, and I don’t just mean the collection.  One room that sometimes proves interesting to visitors is the Library.  There are a couple of reasons for this, one of which we’ll blog about at a later date, but the other is its colour, or rather, lack of, as some would say.  For a house that combines pink with green in one room, contains a rather beautiful shade of blue in another (if we do say so ourselves), whilst yet another is a riot of colour (and largely unfaded after more than two hundred years), you could be forgiven for thinking that every single room was just as colourful, other than the servants’ rooms, of course.  This is not the case. Continue reading

‘The Trappings of Trade’ and lacquer – part one

Welcome to our first post of 2014, where continuing on from our post on Paktong, as part of last year’s ‘The Trappings of Trade’ exhibition, we now turn our attention to lacquer and the items at Osterley that fall into this category, starting with the lacquer secrétaire that normally resides in the Etruscan Room.

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Paktong at Osterley

Earlier in the year, Osterley held an exhibition called ‘The Trappings of Trade’, which was curated in partnership with UCL’s ‘East India Company At Home’ project.  The exhibition told the story of the East India Company at Osterley and highlighted some of the related items in Osterley’s collection, as well as including an oral history element associated with the local community around the estate.

In this post, we will focus on one of the items highlighted in the exhibition. Continue reading