The Decoration of Houses, a manual of interior design written by Edith Wharton with architect Ogden Codman, was first published in 1897. In the book, the authors denounce Victorian-style interior decoration and interior design, especially rooms decorated with heavy window curtains, Victorian bric-a-brac and overstuffed furniture. They argue that such rooms emphasize upholstery at the expense of proper space planning and architectural design and are, therefore, uncomfortable and rarely used. Wharton and Codman advocated the creation of houses with rooms decorated with strong architectural wall and ceiling treatments, accentuated by well-suited furniture, rooms based on simple, classical design principles such as symmetry and proportion and a sense of architectural balance. The Decoration of Houses is considered a seminal work and its success led to the emergence of professional decorators working in the manner advocated by its authors, most notably Elsie de Wolfe.The book was reprinted by The Mount and Rizzoli and in a hardcover facsimile in 2007.
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About the Author
Date of Birth:January 24, 1862
Date of Death:August 11, 1937
Place of Birth:New York, New York
Place of Death:Saint-Brice-sous-Forêt, France
Education:Educated privately in New York and Europe