12 August 2013

Antique Foo Dogs are my Fave

This week
chinese foo dogs

It started with a pair I found in an antiques shop last week and was unable to leave without. So beautiful in their navy blue and aged patina.

I desperately need to put them into my depleted shop inventory, yet I desperately want them for my own. Such dilemmas come often as of late!

When faced with pure love for a piece, I'll often hold onto it for a time. Once a few weeks (or months, or years) have passed, I'm more easily able to let it go. And if not, well, then it becomes mine!

I think that's fair, don't you?

chinese fu dogs

I love the eclectic modern vibe they add.

foo dog lamps
traditional home

Here, as in the lamp.

porcelain foo dogs


But I think this is the one that has me at hello. I'm loving the blue Foo Dogs with the grey + orange accents in the room. And that Chinoiserie captures my heart! I'm thinking his room might be the impetus I need for refreshing my bedroom. Because, after 13 years it might be time for a change. Just sayin.

shi dog

These are currently residing in my bedroom as I decide their fate - to keep or sell.

And for those of you, like me, always curious about the origins of my finds, Foo Dogs are ancient mythical creatures who have a history going back as far as 208 BC (whenever that was, but definitely a long time ago). They go by several names - Foo (Fu) Dog, Foo (Fu)  Lion, and imperial guard lions; but in their native China, they are Shi (lion). In Western culture they typically are called Foo Dogs.

Originally made in pairs, a male + female, they are said to hold mystical powers and would be placed in front of palaces and aristocratic homes to protect the structures and those who lived within. The pair represent yin and yang, or the balance of the universe. The male holds a ball in his paw (representing power over his world), and the female is usually restraining a mischievous cub (representing nurture).

foo dog holding ball

Western versions are often stylized decorations varied in their representation and often identical (both male or female in a set).

blue foo dogs

Don't they just look as if they belong in my bedroom?

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