Different Types of Chinese Porcelain Stools and Their Uses

Chinese porcelain stools have been used for centuries and are a beautiful addition to any home. They come in a variety of shapes, colors, and sizes, each with its own unique purpose. In this blog post, we’ll explore the different types of Chinese porcelain stools and how they can be used to create an elegant look in your home.

Ming Dynasty Stools

The Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) was a period of great artistic production in China, particularly in the realm of porcelain. This era produced a variety of different types of stools, each with its own unique purpose.

One of the most common types of Ming Dynasty stools was the “tou k’uai,” which was a low stool with four legs that were decorated with floral designs or calligraphy. The tou k’uai was often used as a seat for guests or for ritual purposes.

Another type of Ming Dynasty stool was the “sanchi.” The sanchi was a slightly higher stool than the tou k’uai and featured more ornate designs. It was usually made from glazed porcelain with a footrest and was often used in palaces or by scholars. 

The Ming Dynasty also produced a type of stool called the “luo.” The luo was designed to be placed on top of tables and was usually made from a single piece of porcelain. The luo was usually decorated with dragons, phoenixes, and other symbols of good luck. 

Lastly, the Ming Dynasty produced an interesting type of stool called the “tea table stool.” The tea table stool was designed to be placed directly on the floor and had a hollowed-out portion at the center. This allowed it to be used as a makeshift table for tea cups and other items. 

These four types of Ming Dynasty stools are still popular today and can often be found in homes and restaurants throughout China. They are both beautiful and practical, making them a great addition to any home or office.

Qing Dynasty Stools

The Qing Dynasty, which spanned from 1644 to 1912, saw the production of a range of furniture pieces, including porcelain stools. These stools were often crafted from enameled porcelain with intricate designs and detailed paintings in vibrant colors. The legs were often constructed from brass or bronze and featured similar decorations. The stools were also frequently decorated with painted dragons and flowers to represent good luck.

These stools typically had low backs and simple frames that were lightweight and easy to move around. They were used in a variety of spaces, including gardens, tea ceremonies, and even government offices. In addition to being decorative pieces, they also served practical purposes such as providing extra seating or serving as makeshift tables. Many of these stools were also exported to Europe, where they became popular as decorative items in wealthy households. 

Today, Qing Dynasty stools are highly sought after by collectors for their beauty and craftsmanship. They are often included in museum collections and can be found in antique stores around the world.

Republican Period Stools

During the Republican period in China, from 1912-1949, furniture styles changed drastically. The stools used during this time were no exception and had a unique style that was distinct from those of previous eras. 

The most popular style of stool during this period was known as “the presidential seat” or “the North-South seat”. This type of stool featured a flat top with curved legs, often made from stained hardwood. It was designed to fit comfortably between the knees and was commonly used by high-ranking officials for official business or ceremonies. 

Another style of stool used during this period was the “cigar stool”. This type of stool was shaped like a cylinder and had a curved top, usually made from wood or bamboo. It was most often used as a side table for guests to place their drinks on.

A third type of stool used during the Republican period was the “dragon stool”. This type of stool featured a flat top, with four curved legs, often carved with dragons and other mythical creatures. The dragon stool was very popular among the wealthy during this period and was often used as an accessory in formal settings. 

Finally, the last type of stool used during the Republican period was the “elephant stool”. This type of stool had a flat top with four curved legs, usually made from hardwood or porcelain, and was designed to be comfortable and supportive. The elephant stool was most commonly used as a seating option for guests in private residences.

Modern Stools

The most recent type of Chinese porcelain stools are from the modern era. These stools are made of a combination of materials such as ceramic, wood, and metal. While some may be decorated with traditional Chinese motifs, others are decorated in more modern styles. They are often used as accent pieces in contemporary home décor, adding a unique and stylish touch to any space. The modern designs of Chinese porcelain stools can range from sleek and simple to intricate and elaborate. The versatility of these stools makes them an excellent choice for any type of home décor.

In Summary

Chinese porcelain stools are elegant, timeless pieces of furniture that can be found in various homes around the world. These stools come in different styles depending on the time period they were made, from the Ming Dynasty to the Republican Period and modern times. Each style offers its own unique look, making it easy to find a style that fits with any decor. No matter which type of Chinese porcelain stool you choose, they are sure to make a beautiful addition to any room.

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