Feature Friday: China Style

This Feature Friday, I am taking us to China! Although I have never been to China, from what I have seen and studied, China is a place with rich history, culture, tradition and some amazing architectural details. Many of the Chinese elements we recognize have a deep spiritual and historical meaning. Traditional Chinese architecture is very distinct and unlike anything that you would expect to find in the U.S. or Europe. There is a large religious influence in traditional Chinese architecture and design that can be seen with pagodas and the use of Buddha statues. Dragons and lions, often seen in the form of statues, stem from Chinese mythology and carry with them several meanings. For example, the lion statue above is meant to protect the structure it sits in front of.  With such an old civilization, it is not wonder that China has so many cultural and historical influences in design and architecture.

Let's explore some more...

Red! Red is heavily used in Chinese art and decor. Red represents several meanings in Chinese culture. I love the cloud of paper lanterns hanging above in this photo. I have heard that the shape and size of the paper lantern a person hangs up is an indication of their class. Anyone know if that's true?

From the birdcages and lanterns to the use of the green and blue in the paintings, I love all of these detailed elements pictured above.

The room above is so warm and stately. I love the warmth of all the dark woods and the carved wood detail on the tables and chairs. The shape and moulding around the windows is fantastic.

The entrance to this room is gorgeous! I am pretty sure I've mentioned before that I love wood carvings, but I mean, how could you not? Curved lines are also a favorite of mine so, again, I love this opening.
I wish there was more photo to this room because I am very curious to see more of that bed and the wood shutters - I am thinking that it's a small space that they are utilizing very well. After having some tea on those red chairs and sofa, just pull back the wood shutter and off to bed you go!

Red and green and it's NOT Christmas! This color combo is done so well. The rug ties all the colors in the space in beautifully. I truly love this room - every element - wouldn't change a thing.

The two rooms above are so lovely. I mean, the big blue circle of a door leading from the living room to the kitchen - how could you not want that? ...Well, maybe not everyone would make it blue. Anyways, I love the idea of shutting the door to the kitchen while entertaining guests and having the surprise of that green door. Genius.

  There is definitely that spiritual influence in these gardens - pagoda and all. This is a perfect spot to reflect and get some peace and quiet.

I love the play of scale in this room. The wood bench is so simple, bare and low but it is offset by this over sized empty birdcage that seems to perfectly complete the space.

I still have much to learn about China style and with all the deep meanings and influences, I probably will never know it all. I find China a very intriguing culture and I believe there is so much we can learn just by observing our similarities and differences. If you have any fun or interesting facts, feel free to inform me!

All images from China Style, Ed. Angelika Taschen & Photos Reto Guntli

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