Storage Cabinet with Longevity Symbols
Shandong, circa 1900
Dating from the beginning of the 20th century, this beautifully carved cabinet is from Shandong province in the northeast of China. It is in a style sometimes referred to as a 'butterfly cabinet' due the front profile, with carved spandrels at each side that taper down to the feet. Unusually, the cabinet still has it's old hardware, including two additional iron drop handles that allow the upper drawers to be secured. The front of each drawer has a floral design in relief carving either side of the central handle. On each door is a large, circular 'long life' symbol, again in relief carving. The cabinet's rounded side frames fit directly into the underside of a thick, plank top and the doors and drawers are also set within rounded frames. The doors are set on wooden dowel hinges rather than using metal hardware, adding to the simple, understated style and further drawing the eye to the lovely carved detail. The cabinet is still in its original dark finish, worn around the frames and doors to give an interesting patina. With its elegant shape and detail and a removable shelf inside, the cabinet would provide a wonderful focal point in a hallway or living room, or even as a vanity unit in a bathroom.
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