This ingenious antique Chinese sundial can be carried in the pocket. When needed, the cover is removed, the pointer is raised and held in place by the notch in the raised semi circle arm. Direction is established by the small compass on one side of the pointer. The small fixed circular dial on the other side of the pointer uses Chinese characters...
This is a wonderfully detailed silver needle case which was worn hanging from the belt. It has it's original long leather thong and silk tassel. Each side of the silver case has a central stone bead...one coral, one turquoise. The sides of the case (not pictured) have incised cloud/wave pattern. When opened, the case has copper with fabric arm to hold the needles.
For indigenous and nomadic people, needles were an essential and valuable tool for survival of daily life...
Toward the late Qing and early Republic periods, footbinding in urban centers became less common. But women were still concerned with fashionable footwear. This pair of beaded strips are actually shoes parts which would have been sewn with other matching beaded fabric parts to form a pair of beaded shoes.
22 inches long and a century of hard use but the tip is clean and sharp. I suspect a skilled carpenter could still use this old Chinese drill to build a cabinet or post and beam house. Personally, I am so thankful for electrical tools.
Toward the late Qing and early Republic periods, footbinding in urban centers became less common. But women were still concerned with fashionable footwear. This pair of beaded strips are actually shoes parts which would have been sewn with other matching beaded fabric parts to form a pair of beaded shoes
This old Tibetan pouch would have been worn for festival both for decoration and coins...it is not a flint strike...clearly it has been used (probably passed from generation to generation)...decorated with coral and turquoise...a few metal enhavcements are missiog...
This knife sheath would be hung from the woven shoulder strap by the hill tribe hunter. This one was brought back from the border region by a friend. Now heavily patinated with use and age, it was beautifully hand made many years ago and was both light weight and serviceable. It is a wonderful artifact of an age and culture that is rapidly disappearing.
This is one of a pair of wooden (not papier mache) chinoiserie footed plates made for export. The central medallion Japanese scene is classic and the rim has ornate panels of individual woman in various poises. Each side has handle shaped and painted as an ivy leaf.
On the black lacquered back is the rement of a very old label. Plate is 10.75 at the widest point. Sourced from an old estate in the US, Chinoiserie of this detail and quality are rare, probably Edo Period between 1840-1850
Qing Dynasty ivory ring carved with dragons circling oval shaped pearl.
This hand carved panel is from a Chinese Buddhist Temple erected around 1860. The panel is deeply carved with a scene which takes place at the foot of the sacred mountain. Bits of Mother of Pearl are inlaid into the mountain and is also used to highlight a few costume details.
This panel was used as an architectural element and has the mortise cuts in the top which were used to hold the panel in place. It is one of a pair of panels which were taken from the temple...
Diameter approximately 2.75 inches, this antique chinese mirror may have originally had silvered surface on reflective side...brought to the US 1920-1930 by missionary Rebecca Cloud-Stewart..deterioration of metal surfaces as expected.
this old set of books was originally held together into a single volume with a cover..
The cover is now clearly falling apart and the books are all tied together with a leather cord probably done sometime in the 50's. Each volume covers a different aspect of law...civil, criminal etc...
There is a very faded red seal on the front page...the photo of the seal has been enhanced to hopefully make it more readable... Lots of Chinese characters used throughout the text...
Though sourced from northern China, this antique powder flask is most likely Chinese ethnic minority from the southern regions. There are 3 flasks for carrying gun powder. Used rifle cartridges are used both as stoppers and bullets are held in the shaped spacers between the powder flasks. It was made by shaping and then sewing 2 pieces of heavy leather (probably elephant hide)together.
This elaborate beaded breastplate would have been worn for festivals by a wealthy Tibetan woman. The main section has 3 ornate silver and turquoise ornaments surrounded by a raised beaded coil which is bordered with cowrie shells. The neckline rolled and padded.
It is 13 inches across at the widest point and can be tied around the neck using the attached fabric ties. As is obvious in the pictures, there are a couple areas of lose on the turquoise ornaments.
This traditional small leather purse would have been used as an ornament and hung from a belt by a Tibetan woman during festival. It is heavily decorated with silver metal, turquoise and coral beads. This is an old one and is in excellent condition.
Using stuffed folded fabric on paper backing to form decorative doll type figures was a highly prized art form in old Chinese culture. This large figure of a noble woman riding a donkey is a now rare example of that art form made during the late 19th and very early 20th century. Wonderfully detailed, she has an embroidered bat as a hair ornament and wears a tiny lotus shoe on her foot which is fitted into a stirrup...
Beautifully carved powder horn from Chinese Miao ethnic minority over 90 years old from Guizhou Province. The underside of the horn is full of old writing. Unfortunately, no one can read the old writing. Around the turn of the century the forests around the Miao villages were full of game and the men would frequently hunt for game to provide family meals. Unfortunately, most of the game has diminished and many of the hunting skills are forgotten.
The body of this antique Miao Chinese powder horn is carved with large spider web, small foo dogs, and clouds. The stopper is carved into a lotus blossom. The Miao believe that passed relatives take the form of spiders to visit and watch family members, so spider webs are left undisturbed in the home. This horn is from Kali area and is in excellent condition. It is 80-90 years old and approx 9" long.