Some recent examples of our bespoke Chinese furniture

Some recent examples of our bespoke Chinese furniture

Some of our customers have been kind enough to share photos of their newly installed Shimu furniture with us recently, including a few pieces that we made to order. This therefore seems like a good opportunity to let others view some examples of what we can produce on request. Each month we will discuss these kind of ‘bespoke’ projects with several customers, draw up designs and provide quotes to have their ‘dream’ furniture made. One of the nicest parts of the job is working with a customer to create something truly unique and then see it through to completion. Although there is a surcharge for bespoke orders, as all of our furniture is essentially made by hand and we don’t mass produce any of our standard designs, the additional price for something out of the ordinary often comes in much lower than expectations – often a pleasant surprise.

The two red lacquer, painted cabinets shown below were produced for Mrs Mary Kay, together with the beautiful carved Horseshoe Armchair also pictured. Mary came to visit us at our showroom in Greengates with her son, David, towards the end of last year to discuss having some pieces made and to judge the quality of what we can offer. Mary lost her sight several years ago and so relies on her son to be her eyes, but has also learnt to create a picture in her head of what things look like using her other senses. She spent a good couple of hours with us on her first vist, touching cabinets to get a feel for the size and proportions as well as the finish and paintings on some of our antiques and painted Shanxi furniture.

  Low Black Lacquer Cabinet with Butterflies Shanxi Painted Cabinet in Red Lacquer Carved Horseshoe Armchair Wedding Cabinet in Red Lacquer

After several weeks of discussion, emailing designs and drawings to David, we confirmed Mary’s order for the two cabinets and armchair. The two cabinets were based on our Gold Decorated Wedding Cabinets and Shanxi Painted Cabinets, each one to be finished in a glossy red lacquer and decorated with a design showing children and a Chinese landscape. The one other important difference for Mary was that the paintings themselves, hand painted over gold leaf as standard, had to be slightly raised off the lacquered surface of the cabinet. This was so that she would be able to feel the decoration in order to picture it in her head.

The carved horseshoe armchair was more standard – exactly the same as our normal Folding Horseshoe Armchair but with a fixed wooden seat rather than the normal woven version.

The three pieces were included on our first available shipment and finally delivered to Mary a few weeks ago – much to her delight and to admiring comments from friends and neighbours. As she had promised, we received photos of the furniture in its new home earlier this week – the final touches having been added with one of our silk and stone tassels hanging on each cabinet.

The last cabinet shown here was produced recently for another customer, Mrs Marsland, who was so pleased with the finished result that she sent in the photo below as soon as her furniture was installed. Mrs Marsland also visited us to take a look at our Chinese Classical and painted furniture and we discussed the possibility of producing a low table based on a cut down version of our Ladies Cabinet. Finshed in black lacquer, the front of the table was to be decorated in gold leaf and hand painted with butterflies and I hope you’ll agree that the final result looks gorgeous! We are now producing a couple of side tables to match, which will be leaving China at the end of next month.

Although it can take longer to produce a ‘made to order’ item like these (typcially 10-14 weeks for delivery), our bespoke service means that you end up with a unique, hand made piece of furniture that exactly matches your requirements. You can find more examples and details here or give us a call to discuss your project.

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