LIFE> Odds and Ends
Living large the Chinese way
By Xiao Changyan (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-06-25 17:00

Above and inset: Classic Chinese furniture of Ming and Qing dynasties style are most popular.

In today's modern world of home decor, it is quite easy to fall in line with new, shiny ideas and concepts of abstract art. But, that should not be the case for Chinese luxury homes, says Zhou Rongling.

The renowned connoisseur and collector of classic furniture says such homes should instead focus on showcasing traditional pieces. They should include proud decors, such as Ming Dynasty-styled chairs, ebony cabinets painted in gilt lacquer, gold-painted patterned arhat beds made of Huanghuali wood and high-waist sandalwood tables.

"This is the Chinese way of home luxury we should cherish, instead of blindly adoring expensive foreign designs," says Zhou, who has spent his life collecting and developing classic Chinese furniture. "Once you get more knowledge on our (Chinese) traditional furniture, you will be more amazed by its beauty."

With classic trends returning to interior furnishing in recent years, more people, especially the new wealthy class in China, share Zhou's ideas.

It is a luxury though that does not come cheap. Each item, even a small ebony stool, may match the price of a Mercedes Benz limousine. And, if they are authentic antiques from centuries ago, the value increases, exponentially.

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