This antique coconut grater is a very practical multi-use creation designed to cut, grate, shave, husk and shred coconuts and large fruits and vegetables. Some were carved as crouching rabbits, but others like this were realistic renderings of small mammals. Its decorative appeal includes lovely 6-petal flowers above its four legs and elegantly curved and metal piece extending from its mouth. With its warm and rustic feel, it would be a unique decorative addition to any kitchen and an interesting conversational piece.
Although wood sweetmeat (tianshin) confection molds were used to make pastry deserts for religious and secular occasions, this exceptionally crafted and beautiful hardwood footed one was most likely a marriage gift in a wealthy family as seen in the decorative images and their symbolic meanings which were easily recognized by the owners. Elaborated and elegantly decorated in vibrant reds and gilt the mold sits on feet decorated with lotuses and the side apron with upside-down bats. Wishes for fidelity and fecundity are represented by paired fish and lotus pods filled with seeds. This is one of the ultimate wedding gifts, a blessing for the newlyweds and their future children. Although slightly warped from age, it is in excellent condition.
This intricately handmade hardwood mold contains deeply carved indentations on both sides used to make five different types of sweets for the Autumn Moon Festival. Each side has a carved circular mold with intricate detailing within it to fashion mooncakes and cookies that imitate a full moon. The front side has a mold of a rabbit jumping over the moon and both round cakes have rabbits in their design. With its soft patina and museum-quality stand, this rare antique carved mold would be a warm spiritual addition to any kitchen, and an especially wonderful gift for newlyweds or during the time of the Autumn Moon Festival.
Wall pockets remain a very common decorative element in Asian homes. In China, they are used to hold chopsticks and flowers to bring good fortune to a space where the family gathers. This charming, finely made and unique vintage Shiwan pocket is a frog seated on a lotus. The lotus and frog share similar and symbiotic traits. Both are aquatic organisms, as frogs find shelter under the lotus leaves while the frog helps nourish the plant’s root and both symbolize transformation. In Buddhist beliefs, both move between watery environments representing the subconscious and land which symbolizes the conscious or material world. With a hole in the back for hanging on a wall, this wall pocket is great addition to enhance a kitchen’s coziness and feng shui and is a wonderful wedding gift.
This Shiwan chopsticks holder is covered in vivid apple-green glaze with a hole for mounting. Chopsticks are significant accessories and often included in a Chinese bride’s dowry because the word for chopsticks is a pun for “speedy arrival of sons.” It is filled with many auspicious symbols: the phrase baizi qiansun (“a hundred sons and a thousand grandsons),” a bat with coins and a ribbon (blessings in front of your eyes”) a pair of birds (conjugal fidelity) and a border pattern of clouds (abundance). This decorative container can hold utensils, dried flowers, and other objects and is a unique wedding gift.
This Shiwan chopsticks holder is covered in vivid apple-green glaze with a hole in the top for mounting. Chopsticks are significant accessories and often included in a Chinese bride’s dowry because the word for chopsticks is a pun for “speedy arrival of sons.” It is filled with many auspicious symbols: the phrase baizi qiansun (“a hundred sons and a thousand grandsons), ” a bat with coins and a ribbon (blessings in front of your eyes”) a pair of birds (conjugal fidelity) and a border pattern of clouds (abundance).This decorative container can hold utensils, dried flowers, and other objects and is a unique wedding gift.
This intricately hand carved and decorated mold has smooth carved indentations on both sides and is used to make confections called sweetmeats (tianshin) such as mooncakes eaten at festivals, holidays, and other key celebrations. One side produces 5 medium size confections and the other 9 smaller ones. Plain round cakes like this mold produces are likely made for other events as the sides are smaller, smooth, and without the sectioned exterior or decorative carved interior designs of harvest mooncakes. The 5-petal plum blossoms attached to vines are auspicious signs of fortune and longevity and their seeds are fertility symbols. In excellent condition with a fine patina it would make a great gift, especially for newly-weds.
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