[Detail view, Popplyland, Liberty & Co.'s furnishing fabric, a printed cotton 1890-1907 from V & A Pattern: Liberty.]
Here's a sneak peek at one of the older Liberty prints, Poppyland, included in Anna Buruma's upcoming release, V & A Pattern: Liberty. (This fabric pre-dates Downton Abbey's era by just a smidge.) Buruma is Liberty's longtime archivist, and the previously mentioned book is from the museum's series of very affordable little editions; tucked in the back is a CD with 70 hi-res images -- a playground for designers and students who want to do some non-commercial experimenting.
There's much to explore: Buruma covers textile territory from Liberty's early days, during the Aesthetic movement, and its evolution throughout the 20th century. I'll be back soon with details on the book as well as other British design tomes on their way to U.S. book stores.
In the meantime, you'll find background on the V & A's upcoming show, British Design: 1948-2012, here, the Liberty hub here, and more of Buruma with Central St Martins College winning design students here.