Lacquered Armoire

Lacquered Armoire

Lacquered Armoires at Shimu

From Ancient Art to Modern Home: The Story of Chinese Armoires

At Shimu, we're dedicated to bringing you the unique beauty and craftsmanship of Chinese furniture. One piece that epitomises this is the lacquered armoire – a staple in Chinese furniture making that blends functionality with the elegance of Oriental design.

The lacquered armoire has a rich history dating back to the Ming Dynasty, renowned for their simplistic and understated design aesthetic. The lacquering process, intricate yet durable, adds a polished finish to these pieces that is both beautiful and protective.

Crafting an Armoire: The Fusion of Function and Beauty

Creating a Chinese armoire is a painstakingly precise process. It begins with the selection of the right wood – a balance of durability and aesthetic. Then comes the carving, a labour of love that imbues each piece with character and meaning. Finally, the lacquering process commences, multiple layers of lacquer meticulously applied and polished to give the piece its characteristic sheen.

Among our collection, you'll find not just lacquered armoires, but also those adorned with intricate carved designs, and the traditional 'wedding cabinets'. These are named after their historical use - gifted to brides for their wedding day, to store their trousseau and later, family heirlooms.

The Process of Making a Traditional Chinese Armoire

Chinese armoires are exquisite pieces of furniture that showcase the craftsmanship and artistry of Chinese woodworking. These armoires are carefully handcrafted using a combination of traditional techniques and materials that have been perfected over centuries.

The construction of a traditional Chinese armoire begins with selecting high-quality timber, such as rosewood, elm, or mahogany, known for their durability and beautiful grain patterns. Skilled craftsmen then meticulously shape the wood into various components, including the frame, doors, and panels, using traditional hand tools.

Once the wooden components are shaped, they are fitted together using traditional joinery techniques such as mortise and tenon joints, dovetails, and tongue and groove connections. These techniques ensure the stability and longevity of the armoire.

After the armoire is assembled, the process of applying a lacquered finish begins. Lacquer is a natural resin obtained from the sap of the Chinese lacquer tree. It is highly durable and gives the armoire a lustrous, glossy appearance.

To achieve a lacquered finish, several layers of lacquer are meticulously applied to the surface of the armoire. Each layer is allowed to dry and harden before the next layer is applied. Between each layer, the surface is carefully sanded and polished to ensure a smooth and even finish.

In some cases, artisans may incorporate decorative techniques such as carving, inlay work, or painting on the lacquered surface. These intricate designs add a touch of elegance and artistry to the armoire, making it a truly unique and stunning piece of furniture.

The process of making a traditional Chinese armoire requires great skill, patience, and attention to detail. From the selection of premium timber to the application of the final lacquered finish, every step is undertaken with utmost care to create a masterpiece that reflects the rich cultural heritage of Chinese furniture craftsmanship.

The Charm of the Lacquered Armoire in Modern Homes

Incorporating Chinese style furniture, such as the lacquered armoire, into contemporary interiors can provide a striking contrast that merges the traditional with the modern. An armoire can act as a statement piece, its rich lacquer finish catching the eye and adding depth to any room. Alternatively, for a subtler approach, smaller armoires can be used as side tables or decorative storage units.

We believe that every home can benefit from the timeless elegance of a lacquered armoire. Whether used in a living area, a bedroom, or even a hallway, an armoire provides a versatile and stylish storage solution. It's not just about function, but about adding a touch of historical luxury to your everyday life.

Discover Your Perfect Armoire at Shimu

Whether you're looking for a bold, carved design or the elegant simplicity of a lacquered piece, we invite you to explore our range of Chinese armoires. From an ever-changing range of antique pieces steeped in history to new creations inspired by traditional designs, each armoire at Shimu is a testament to the fine craftsmanship and artistry that goes into Chinese furniture making.

Embrace the ancient art of Chinese furniture in your home with a lacquered armoire. Come visit us at our showroom in Albion Mills, Greengates, West Yorkshire, or browse our online collection, and let us help you find the perfect piece to add a touch of oriental elegance to your home.


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