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Passage Of India

Indian artist has expressed himself traditionally in different materials. They experimented with different materials to extract maximum comfort out of what each physical entity could offer.
In the past the princely states and other feudal chiefs were patrons of the woodcraft in Rajasthan. They were also fond of leisurely living style. Wood in its many verities were collected from all over India and used in ways to enhance its natural beauty. Every home was embellished with intricately carved wooden doors, windows, columns, brackets and panels. Many were further painted to enhance the glorification of this art. The subjects and style of painting on furniture is in no way different from traditional paintings in the 'Mughal' courts. The 'Kishangarh' style of Rajasthan and the 'Tantric' of West Bengal are most popular depictions on the furniture pieces too.
Age
Most of the original pieces are in excellent condition. Sometimes the damaged pieces are repaired with minor additions without affecting the underlying theme of classic design. The antique sense of beauty is absolutely preserved in these collections. We produce a limited number of old door armoire, TV cabinet, medium cabinets, small cabinets etc. with doors from Gujarat, Punjab, Shekhawati and Jodhpur. We do have rare stock of architectural pieces like antique doors, pillars, arches etc. from dismantled 'Mahals" and 'Havelis'. We have developed a complete range of furniture constructed out of the 'ox cart' called the 'Cart Range'. This cart range if the first choice of architects and designers to give any interior a colonial flavour. Hundreds of proud owners and satisfied users of these artifacts at in India and all over the world testify to its huge and continuing success.
About our Furniture
Our vintage and antique furniture includes traditional Indian pieces, selections from South India and Nepal, as well as items in the colonial European style with an Indian touch. Each piece is unique, with rich history, character, and warmth. Many are made of teak, an exceptionally durable and beautiful wood. The furniture is very well aged and will perform well in any climate. To maintain the character and original patina of each piece, only very minor repairs, if any, and light polishing have been done. Some pieces have been repainted or refinished to enhance the natural charm of the details. We incorporate large, ornately carved doors and other old pieces with new teak, Indian rosewood and mango wood to make television cabinets, bookshelves and other functional pieces, creating modern essentials imbued with the original charm of the reclaimed wood. As high quality vintage and antique pieces are becoming more difficult to find, we have started to include some reproduction pieces in our selection. These pieces are handmade and finished in high quality teak, Indian rosewood and mango wood.
Tables: Old window tables from India. We offer a variety of tables, with the selection changing all the time. These are made from old window and doors, primarily from Rajasthan province. The table structure is newly made, but blends beautifully with the old windows and doors. Glass can be cut to fit each item.
Dowry Cabinet or Chest : Dowry cabinet or majoes from India. This item was typical in the late 19th century to 20 century. When a woman was married her possessions and gifts were put in these chests and transported to her new home with her husbands family. Each chest is one-of-a-kind and detailed individually. Most items have been restored for both functional usages, as well as to restore the original integrity of the piece.
 
Tibetan Storage Chest : Tibetan storage chest. We occasionally find these old Tibetan storage pieces. They vary in size and shape, with most dating to the 18th and 19th and 20th century. They are painted in the traditional Nepali style and colors.
Old Door Cabinet : India chest made from old doors. Many other chests are available. This Cabinet is representative of many we have to offer. The restored door is of reclaimed material with the surrounding framework of new construction.
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Cart Table : Cart tables from India. The ox cart has traditionally been the backbone of rural Indian economy in the past. Only wealthy families during the colonial reign and even dating back to the feudal era could afford to own an ox cart. This historic cart is now used to make beautiful furniture to adorn modern day interiors with a rustic look.  These tables are all one-of-a-kind and are made from the top or seating portion of the bullock cart. Most items have been restored for both functional usages, as well as to restore the original integrity of the piece.
Dowry or Damachia Chest :- Dowry or damachia chest from Rajasthan, India. Typical of the late 19th and 20th century they are interesting and functional cabinets that can be accommodate a multiple of uses. Most items have unique marking or carvings and many have been restored for both functional usages, as well as to restore the original integrity of the piece.
 
 
Carved Armoire : Burmese armoire.Beautiful wood cabinet with lower storage draws. Probably late 19th early 20th century. Most items have been restored for both functional usages, as well as to restore the original integrity of the piece.
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Pony Bench : Referred to as a pony bench due to its carvings, often made in the early 20th century from the Rajasthan Province. They come in many shapes and sizes and can be employed for many uses. Pillows and cushions were commonly added to add to comfort and décor.
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Table/Console : Table/console from India. This long, low furniture piece with drawers can serve as either a table and/or an interesting storage cabinet. Most items have been restored for both functional usages, as well as to restore the original integrity of the piece. These items were common in the late 19th and 20th century.
Campaign Chests : Campaign chests from India. Made during the British colonial period in India, for storage of many items. Due to their large sizes, they can be great for actual storage of clothes, but of course, make great pieces to be seen and enjoyed!
ART OF INDIA
In the west, art is an indulgence ~ an appreciation of beauty and form often produced specially for a market of people who wish to bask in the playground that the artist hopefully intended. On the Indian sub-continent however, this has not always been the case.
For many centuries in India, astonishing works of art have been created through tradition, for wholly practical value and much of it associated with the rich diversity of religion, which exists in the region. It was not until very recently that the Indians realized the global commercial significance of their rich cultural and creative heritage.
This history has spawned a large diversity of master craftsmen trained in methods handed down over many centuries ~ either independently or under a variety of colonial masters. Thus many designs can be pinpointed to particular eras and areas of India. The majority of the work is still done by hand, creating some impressive sculpture, textile designs and metalwork. Many of these designs have recently become very popular in the west as an inexpensive alternative to our vast range of furniture designs.
At its most basic, Indian furniture, both old and modern tends to be very solid and rustic in nature ~ from this appealingly simple base, the furniture can be ornately carved, painted or incorporate Jali iron work, glass, mirrors, tiles or brasswork. The base furniture shapes are unique to the country, but most are perfectly practical for western use. Cupboards and wardrobes (known as "Almirahs") tend to be shelved, but also can be adapted to include hanging space. More unusual storage units to be found are the "Damchis", which are often a long, carved and decorated box on four legs with small doors at the front for access. The beautiful pieces often had a religious purpose, however everyday items such as chipati dishes, buckets, baskets etc can take on a simple but exotic feel while being both ornamental and practical.
The Indians are world renowned experts at making brand new furniture appear genuinely antique or constructing new articles of furniture around antique pieces of carving. This can be an advantage or a handicap depending on how you perceive it. Reproductions can look genuinely old and elegant, but at the fraction of the price of an antique, yet one has to beware of reproductions posing as antiques.
A trip to India, although not for the feint of heart, can inspire a complete metamorphosis of personal ideas in terms of interior design, as Indian culture possesses an almost alien train of thought to what we are accustomed to. Moreover, although gaining a complete insight is a practical impossibility, acquiring a small fragment can be a most rewarding experience.
This article written by James Caton, the proprietor of Camomile Lawn for Selective Lifestyle magazine. The Lifestyle Magazine for Harrogate, Leeds, Bradford and York
Elements
Indians are immensely proud of their homes, they are a temple for mind and body. As homemakers they do not hesitate to combine diverse textures, prints and colors to achieve an individual style. Indians have the concept of five elements - air, water, fire, earth and space. These were woven into the fabric of Indian society before the arrival of the Argans around 1500BC. Indian belief has always been dedicated to the worship of nature. Western belief has the first four elements but space is a more abstract principle. Space is the vast vacuum beyond ordinary perception and symbolizes the huge power of an unseen force.
Even today the five elements are celebrated in the decorative schemes of many Indian homes.

air

 

Air - vaya is symbolized by white and silver, with long light fabrics that dance in the breeze.  It signified the importance of fresh air.

 

water

Waterjala is symbolized by the colour blue.  Blues give a cool calm influence.  The concept of exotic bathing was made into a fine art by Indian maharajas, whom had their gold and silver bathtubs filled with warm scented water strewn with rose petals.

Blue is the colour of Krishna and the monsoon.

fire

Fire - agni is the principle deity worshipped by ancient Hindus, colours used are orange, red and gold and the sun symbol.  Agni the god of fire governs bedrooms.  This colour red adds a patina of passion to many bedrooms in India. 

Red is the colour of Kama, the god of love and passion and invites romance.

earth

Earth - bhoomi is symbolized with earthy colours and textures.  In many Indian homes the lines between inside and out are blurred.

 

space

Space - akash is represented by the expansion of visual space.  Walls punctuated by small windows and niches, filigree screens used to separate areas.

 

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