Sunday, July 18, 2010

My New Antique

On my way home Saturday morning from having the fifth - yes, fifth - windshield installed in my Jeep, I spied this Chinese table at a yard sale not far from my home.

It has seen better days, as some of the design is worn at the top, and, this decorative bar (with circular designs) should be on all four sides but is sadly only still present on this one side.  I still loved it and thought it would go smashingly well in the library of my 100 year old home.  (We refer to the room with the most "period" look as the "library.")  For $20 I brought it home.

I know nothing, however, about Chinese furniture, can anyone out there help?  It is lightweight wood with a thick black lacquer that covers the entire surface except where the decorative bars were broken away from the surface.  The gilt painting is very nicely done, and, even where worn at the top, the paint does not look "flakey" or like it would come off easily.  I do believe the wear is cumulative over time.  Three different people at the yard sale commented on the table and all referred to it as having belonged to the great grandmother of the guy I purchased it from who was likely about 30.  She could have acquired it from family, or, purchased it late in life for all I know, but, I do think it has some age in either case.  There is an ancient crumbling paper label on the bottom that has Chinese characters visible to one side and the word China to the other side but nothing else is legible.


 I have seen similar tables listed as "painting tables" on-line, but, none with the black lacquer and gilding.  Any thoughts?  In any case I like it, and, much against my husband's protests (he has little patience for anything missing pieces and showing wear) it's staying for now.  Share your thoughts or ideas please!

6 comments:

  1. I don't know anything about this table but the whole post makes me want to come over and play Clue so I can declare "Miss Scarlet, in the Library, with the Black Lacquer and Gilt Table!!" Unless I spy a candlestick lying around; then my money's on Professor Plum.

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  2. You are welcome any time! (and, we frisk all our friends before they leave the house, nothing personal...)

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  3. I don't know a lot about this type of furniture, but the CHINA mark on it means it has to be after the early 1900's. I believe this type of table was very popular in the 1920's. The lovely cross piece and abundance of decoration make me think it may be from that time period, but I am only guessing. MOM

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  4. That sounds right! Along with the Mah Jong and Orientialia fascination...

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  5. It is beautiful, whatever its age and provenance! You have the BEST eye.

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  6. Most probably a coffee table belonged to rich Chinese family in the 1930s. The 'circular designs' as you described are actually the ancient Chinese coins motifs (meaning wealth).

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