The Twentieth Century Society

Campaigning for outstanding buildings

C20 Christmas gift guide 2017

C20 has ideas to inspire you if you’re still looking for the perfect Christmas gift for someone who loves C20th architecture, art and design.

C20 gift membership

Give a Christmas present that lasts all year and become a supporter of our post-1914 architecture and design. A C20 Society gift membership for your friends or family costs just £57 a year for individual membership (£42 concessions). Benefits include the C20 magazine delivered straight to your door, a free copy of new C20 journals, and access to our members-only tours and walks. Order by 16 December for Christmas delivery.

Beautiful Books

Would you rather live in a modernist glass villa, a straw bale house or a fisherman’s hut clad in black rubber? 100 Houses 100 Years (Batsford, £25) explores the evolution and diversity of modern housing in Britain since 1914 through stunning new photographs, with text by Barnabas Calder, Gavin Stamp, Elain Harwood and Gillian Darley, among many others. Earlier C20 books 50 Architects 50 Buildings and 100 Buildings 100 Years are still available too.

From London’s No. 1 Poultry and SIS Building (MI6) to the Judge Institute in Cambridge, Post-Modern Buildings in Britain (Batsford, £25) by Geraint Franklin and Elain Harwood celebrates the best that Po-Mo has to offer.

Frederick Gibberd (Historic England, £30) by Christine Hui Lan Manley assesses the work of the consultant architect and planner of Harlow, who went on to design Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral and the Regent’s Park Mosque.

John Grindrod’s Outskirts (Hodder & Stoughton, £16.99) is a memoir about growing up in New Addington, Croydon, right on the edge of the Green Belt. Planners, protestors and residents all form part of his exploration into the fascinating but divisive areas between town and country.

In Cook’s Camden – The Making of Modern Housing (Lund Humphries, £45) Mark Swenarton traces the golden era of social housing in the borough during the 1960s and 70s, under the inspirational leadership of Sydney Cook. Use the discount code CAMDEN10 to save £10.


The Fisherman’s Dream apron features a lovely Robert Tavener design (left & above) from 1955 and is being sold in aid of the Hastings Fishermen’s Protection Society.  Buy it online for £20 from the Emma Mason gallery, which also sells silk scarves featuring Tavener’s designs (starting at £45).

Fashion retailer Uniqlo has a selection of T-shirts and a stole inspired by the designs of Charles and Ray Eames. There is still time to pick up a sale bargain from the website, with prices starting at just £9.90.

Map and prints

The new London Underground Architecture & Design Map (Blue Crow Media, £9) traces more than 100 years of innovative architecture and design on the Tube and comes in an attractive slipcase.

RIBA Pix is offering a generous 25% off its huge range of architectural prints, including C20 pin-ups like the Barbican, Deco houses in Frinton and Madin’s much-mourned library in Birmingham, until the end of December. The last order date for framed prints is 13 December.

We also love the striking selection of prints (£20 each) based on the designs of Sheila Bownas.

Home and interiors

With its unusual ‘vaulted arcade’ base, Adam Nathaniel Furman’s 1st Floor mug will stand out on any breakfast table. The mugs are available in three colours for £25 each from the shop at Sir John Soane’s Museum.

Lucienne Day’s Calyx is just one of her fabulous designs featured on a range of cushions from John Lewis.

Finally, C20 particularly likes the four Edward Bawden wallpapers  newly available as part of the Studio Archive range from the St Jude’s website – including Pigeon and Clock Tower and Seaweed (right) – for an off-beat Christmas present or some New Year redecorating.

Happy Christmas to everyone!

Susannah Straughan


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