The cultural history of man is contained in the woven fabric rugs of the Persian Empire, the woodwork that kept Napoleon alright at St. Helena, and the buffalo skins of the American Midwest. The mirror of King Louis XIV hangs in the Cleveland museum for the multitudes to get a glimpse of the relic of a ghost. The sum knowledge of the Battle of Hastings is recorded upon a tapestry held today on the shores of Normandy. It is through the creation and innovation of these furnishings that unite us to a common past. Would Jefferson have signed the Declaration of Independence without a table to write on?
In Neolithic China, decor could mean protection from evil spirits in the same way that Virginia Woolf, while postulating on the comparative freedoms of men and women, understood the symbolic nature of the door and the desk. To be properly organized, to have and not need for necessities, is to find holiness in living, to find peace in self. Finding the proper furnishings for a home is both a quest for solace and a dance with cultural pasts. Everything has an origin, from the simplest rug to the most ornate Credenza, and to design the interior of a house is to flirt with the ghosts of remembrance. Who does not remember in detail the rugs on the floor of their childhood home? Such a heavy weight is on such seemingly simple objects, but the decor that is chosen to furnish a new house ends up becoming the house itself. It is a truth that was discovered by the people of the Yellow River 6,000 years ago and has become a lifeline to the modern day. Because we have the relics of a bygone time we can remember the network of human life that creates history as we see it today.