Shandong Elm Storage Cabinet
Shandong, circa 1900
The otherwise simple design of this cabinet is lifted by the lovely relief carving on the apron, showing a scrolling floral pattern. The cabinet is from Shandong province, dating from around the beginning of the 20th century. The minimal, chunky frames and 'square cornered' style are quite typical northern Chinese furniture. More unusually, the doors are fitted directly into the cabinet's frames using wooden dowels rather than being secured with metal hinges. The door hardware is a replacment for the original, long since lost and possibly removed during China's 'Great Leap Forward' for turning into steel. The cabinet is made from elm wood, with a wide, attractive grain that is brought out beautifully by the dark wood stain and varnish. With a single removable shelf inside, the cabinet would make a lovely little sideboard or storage cabinet in a living or dining room.
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