The Allure of the Chinese Coromandel Screen

Coco Chanel said she nearly fainted with joy the first time she ever saw a Chinese Coromandel Screen for the first time. All one needs to do is see one up close to appreciate the lost art.

A coromandel screen is a wood, folding screen that is carved before being painted with gold or various colors from the Ming dynasty period in China. Up to 30 layers of lacquer can be used. Its common to see them with decorative scenes of trees, birds, pagodas, scholars, and temples.  Many are hand-painted with painstakingly hand-carved pieces of rosewood and solid minerals such as jadeite and marble.

The name "Coromandel" refers to the Coromandel coast in India where the traders would load their furnishings and screens onto boats. The price of Chinese screens range due to many different factors such as age, materials, designs, and patina.

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3518922_zDesigners love screens because they are the jewel and focal point of a room upon which they build upon.


via: Bunny Williams

I love the richness of this room. The way Bunny incorporated leopard velvet, orange velveteen,   and fall colors with a modern flair.


Photo via: Elle Decor, Design, Alessandra Branca

I have heard people say they don't like Chinese decor because they think it has a heavy feeling. Alessandra Branca paired her coromandel with fun pops of red with a neutral wall and sofa for a refined, youthful space. Not heavy at all.


via: Charlotte Moss

Green is a rare color for a lacquered screen which makes this one all the more attractive. Charlotte's gallery wall is stunning and this space is so feminine. A place you'd never want to leave.



Photo via: House & Home, Design, Bruce Gregga

Bruce did an exceptional job incorporating an 18th century screen with modern sensibilities. It just works. Putting a piece of that caliber in the room provides a warmth and sense of history that sometimes is missing in modern spaces.


Photo via: House Beautiful


Photo via: Elle Decor, Design, Lee Mindel


Photo via: Luxe


Photo via: Architectural Digest, Design, Michael S. Smith


via: Peter Dunham

View our collection of screens here.

August 17, 2016 by 2