Inside Painted Snuff Bottles

Inside Painted Snuff Bottles

Snuff Bottles are the containers that were utilized throughout the Qing Dynasty. The Chinese used these snuff bottles to consume powdered tobacco. Smoking tobacco is considered as an illicit during the period of Qing Dynasty, but the medicinal advantages of these snuff bottles made them famous. They were considered as the remedy for most of the common illnesses such headache, cold and stomach disorders. It is almost similar to the European snuff box and more like a little container as other medicines. Earlier, the snuff bottles were used only by the rich people especially the family members of the ruler but later on every individual of the dynasty started using it. They vary in different materials such as jade snuff bottle, ivory snuff bottle, glass snuff bottles, inside painted snuff bottles, etc.

Inside Painted Snuff Bottles

inside painted snuff bottlesInside Painted Snuff Bottles were one of the famous types of snuff bottles and were known for their art. As the name of the Snuff Bottle said as inside painted, without any doubt the class of container that arouses most interest in the non-collector is that renowned as inside painted. Some antique snuff containers that are highly treasured are painted with a portrait on one side and calligraphy on the other. The inside painted snuff bottles are glass containers which have pictures and often calligraphy painted on the interior exterior of the glass. When someone considers that they have had to decorate the eye brows and eye lashes before the residual fundamental elements to create these portraits, that are so good and comprehensive that they almost gaze like miniature photographic publishes. These miniature arts made them more famous and highly valuable. These charming scenes are only an inch or two high and are decorated while manipulating the brush through the neck of the container perhaps only a quarter inch over, and furthermore decorated in turn around. Ursula Bourne, in her treatise on snuff, proposes that artisans painted on their backs to make it easier to work through the slender opening. It has been said that a skilled creative person may complete an easy container in a week while certain thing exceptional may take a month or more and that the best craftsmen will make only a couple of containers in a year.

Technique behind inside painted snuff bottles

dog-2(face)The artists of these inside painted snuff bottles were creative persons and used an exceptional mini-brush made of weasel’s hair, adhered at right-angles to tiny bamboo handles. Some creative persons will make an initial drawing on paper, before attempting the much tougher task of painting interior the bottle. The artist will generally commence, as in traditional Chinese decorating method, summarize of the subject with broad and slim ink, to lay a base for the submission of colours. The tints utilised on the better value pieces are customary painting oils, and the creative person will usually be very selective with the choice of bottle, preferring partitions of even thickness, with smooth shone exterior exteriors. The interior exterior should first be roughened to ensure good adherence of the decoration. The artist must visualize what his image will gaze like from the outside, as he or she is decorating from the inside in reverse. Extreme care should be taken, as errors are extremely tough, if not impossible, to correct. A summarized drawing is the key to good painting and is an extremely adorable art.

The attractiveness of a snuff container was likely more important than utilitarian concerns and considering this couple of would have been used for retaining snuff. Inside painted snuff bottles are still made today luxuriously for collectors and as souvenirs. The paintings are exclusively conceived by manipulating a decorating brush and decorating on the inward exterior of the snuff containers. The inward painting of snuff containers is a customary Chinese handicraft art with annals of more than a century years. Like other types of snuff container, the range of subject matter utilised on inside decorated containers is without limit. The containers are made from clear components such as crystal or glass.

Speciality about Inside Painted Snuff Bottles

Inside painted snuff bottleThere are some actually incredible antique Chinese snuff containers, mostly made of glass, that have been decorated, especially on the interior of the container. There are several portraits of birds, fish, birds, poems, and other artistic arts. They are testament to the skill and inventiveness of Chinese craftsmen. Numerous containers are completely devoid of decoration, other ones are incredibly ornate. As in all Chinese creative pursuits and crafts, motifs and symbols play a significant part in decorative minutia. There are many poor up to date interior decorated containers available, but there are some up to date ones that can be very attractive to assemble too. Emblems are drawn from a multitude of causes such as legends, annals, belief, philosophy and superstition. The concepts utilised are nearly habitually administered in the direction of bringing wealth, luck, health, even immortality to the owner of an artefact, often as a wish conveyed in a kind of coded form by the giver of a gift. When one looks at the dimensions of the aperture it does appear to be a very tough accomplishment, yet they have did well in decorating appealing scenes, often including calligraphy, such as a verse, or a couple of lines, apart from the artists signature. There are many modern day inside painted snuff bottles designed by poor art and be aware of the art before bidding the snuff bottle.

Coral snuff bottle

Coral snuff bottle

Corals are marine life animals that belong to the phylum class of aquatic animals. They are known to be of importance in their development or building of the coral reefs in the coastline of many oceans and seas and even in lakes. The types of corals that build the coral reefs as well as the snuff bottle are the stony type of the corals. They are characterized by their exceptionally hard shells which when dried and assembled can produce materials as ornaments, carvings and as well as Coral Snuff Bottlesnuff bottles during the ancient times. Nowadays the stony–like corals have become antiques in museums like the snuff bottles which have been viewed like antis by many societies across the globe. The other type of corals is the softy like shelled corals that are algae like structures in their exoskeleton. Many marine friendly conservatives have established that the stony corals have managed to help in the development of coastlines which has facilitated many aspects towards achieving the conservation of its habitants and neighbors. The many applications for the hard stony shelled corals have enabled antique developers to create museums in which antiques that have been developed to be displayed like the snuff bottles.

The snuff bottle was founded by the Qing dynasty during the 18th century, AD; they liked the calcium deposits in the corals shells which are deposited as coral reefs in their coastline. The coral snuff bottle is liked because of it qualities like the permeability of its skin and its versatile shiny surface. The coral snuff bottle has a very high degree of hardness like the reefs themselves, due to their initial quality which cannot be changed although modification can be achieved through shape redesign. The snuff bottle has a versatile recollection of color which is liked by the many Chinese traditionalists hence the desire to develop such bottle with the essence of making it a wine holding container for the nobles.

The snuff bottle in other words can be considered as a symbol of prolific-ness in a society especially in the original group of the Daoists in the Chinese society in the traditional eras. In a traditional setting as that of the Chinese people, a leader in every Daoism group is identified by the type of the snuff bottle or in this example gourd he or she carried. The religion of the people in their society had to be associated with that of the gourds their immortals carried. Therefore the coral snuff bottle has inquisitive meaning towards the Chinese philosophy. Hence the importance of the snuff bottle can be only associated with its contents form. The periods of the immortals in the Chinese emphasize the association in the development of the bottle for special purpose like in serving the religious leaders in the society as well as in other ceremonies during special meetings and events. Times like the 18th century symbols were held in symbolic beliefs of their importance in the development of personal and brotherhood of sisterhood in the Taiwanese and Chinese societies. The coral snuff bottle in the ancient times held meaning of preservation among people in a society and nation.

As a sign of symbolic beliefs in the traditional societies, the coral snuff bottle has symbols designs carved around its skin. The bat symbol which many have associated with evil in the modern world, it meant that is a symbol of goodness in the society. Many have always used the snuff bottle with the purpose for spreading hope in the society. Defining its brittleness is the manner of respect towards their leaders. The snuff bottle in the old cultural practices was common in the Taiwanese and Chinese societies for the last 400 years. The craftsmanship involved in the development of the bottle showed the respect of the craftsman’s and his meaning towards the development of the bottle for royals in the Chinese society. Snuff bottle with its pink top has been held in antiques in the modern world hence it is rare in the periods of using champagne bottle in the essence of showing class and respect.

Agate snuff bottle

Agate snuff bottle

Agate Snuff BottleAgate is one of the materials that can be used in the making of snuff bottle. The material is made up of different colors that occur in layers thus forming the strip structure. The material is usually semi-luscent.

the colors are: green, yellow, red, brown, white and blue. Cording to the pattern of the colors and the materials forming the agate that have different types of agates which include: sardonyx agate, moss agate and castle agate. Agate is thus a rock in crystalline structure.

The rocks usually consist of silica. During the rein of Qing dynasty the European introduced snuff to the court of the kingdom. The use of snuff became popular due to the believe that it had the capacity of curing headache, stomach disorder and other diseases. Due to this popularity of snuff, bottles were introduced to carry this substance hence the making of the snuff bottle where the agate snuff bottle came into being.

It was given that name because it was made from agate material. The agate material was mostly used for the carving process. These bottle  was very popular among the people because of its natural beauty.

the material not only made  the bottles it could also be used to make the stopper that could be used for closing the bottle so that the content could not fall out.

The production of this bottle was very easy. The craftsmen who did the job were highly trained in the empire and thus there names could not appear on the object but only those of the emperor. The bottles were carved modeled into different shapes. Some could be square while others were round. Because the material had more than two different types of color it was referred to as qiao.

In  addition to agate having more than two colors it also had fine textue.Due  to this property the  craftsmen  used the layers of the colors in there natural form to make the agate snuff bottle. All they could do the agate material was to carve it into different distinct shapes that were attractive to people. The bottle were usually made to fit the palm of the hand hence they were small in size.

Antique Agate Snuff Bottle Qing dynastyThe most preferred shapes were those of animals.0ther objects were made to resemble the shape of a flower. Examples of the animals that they could carve were mostly the birds and the animals were for example he lion hence the lion agate snuff bottle. Others could take the shape of a fish and many more shapes of different types of animals depending on what they represented in the society. There some of these bottle that were painted from inside while others were painted from the outside only.

These bottles are highly valued, that is why they used to identify the social status of the individual carrying it. They existed only in the times of Qing dynasty and after. There value was very high because of the scarcity of agate.

Finding this material was very difficult because there natural sources were very few. Hence, agate snuff bottles were very few in number during the time of the Qing empire.

Another factor that led to the bottle to be highly valued was because of its natural colors that made to look very beautiful to the eyes. Those that were made from the brown agate material were considered of a certain type of class. The tawny brown type of agate was considered by the craftsmen to be the most suitable material that could be used for carving.

The agate snuff bottle was given different types of names. Some took the name of the most prominent color on the surface hence we do have the red, white, green, yellow and black colored type. Example of the names that were given to different models of these object include nattural  curved agate, Chinese agate plum snuff bottle, vintage pebble form shadow agate snuff bottle and many more.

As the reign of the Qing dynasty was coming to the end also the use of these bottles diminished. The people no longer valued them due to the reduced usage of snuff and also reduced valued attached to them. Even though these bottles are not highly used nowadays there are many collectors who are so concerned in collection of these bottles and storing them for future generations or selling them to the interested parties. There are museums that have been set up in various parts of china to help in conservation of this art.


Glass Snuff Bottles

The Amazing Art of Glass Snuff Bottles

Currently, the glass snuff bottles are considered as the famous Chinese fine arts.  There are several other decorative accessories and elements that make these glass snuff bottles so fascinating.

Glass snuff bottlesMost of the currently available glass snuff bottles are those of Qianlong and Yongzheng. They are mainly designed during the Qing dynasty. The artists during their rule were very wise and with their wisdom, they have introduced the way of decorating the glass snuff bottles with different enamels. Most of such decorative glass snuff bottles resemble the European style.

The designing of these glass snuff bottles were done under the supervision of a professional artist. The professional had a strong leverage over the production of glass snuff containers. The glass snuff bottles are very small and their size is hardly 3 inches. They are the microcosm of Chinese artisan’s craftsmanship. Sometimes the glass snuff bottles were made in other locations, usually to be sold to the Chinese. They were used only for retaining powdered tobacco along with some herbs and flavors in it.

This combination was inhaled through the nose through the hole on the glass snuff bottle. Though the consumption of tobacco is illegal during those days, due to its health benefits snuff inhalation is permitted. The citizens never used this for opium or other drugs. As the size of the glass snuff bottles is very small, they were used for bribing people. The carved or decorated concepts on snuff containers included vegetation and animal totems proposed to convey blessings. The containers also came with spoons, made from variety of materials.

2The designs carved on these glass snuff bottles don’t mean significant for others but there is a lot of intention behind such figures for the Chinese. Each symbol has its own significance. Enamel on glass especially was an extremely tough technique to expert, because the container was often carved out of impede of glass, not blown. So it was technically very difficult to complete, particularly because they had kilns that didn’t have warmth measures. Then it had to be enameled, and then you had to blaze it, and if the blaze got too warm, the thing would collapse. They had to eyeball if it was too warm or warm enough or anything.

Ceramic where they took a glass bottle and then dropped it into another color or some colors sometimes, and you origin the outside color to make an image on the container. They are really decorated inside with a little brush that moves in and has a right angle so that the decor can go up on the exterior. It is most like watercolors decorate but not an oil painting. So, you are not supposed to dip this in water. The first interior painted containers were made by literati and scholar agents. It was an amateur painters’ sort of thing. Then there were genuine craftsmen who became very good at this. There are a number of top creative persons today who extend to make inside-painted glass snuff bottles which makes them more valuable.

Jade Snuff Bottles

Jade Snuff Bottles

Jade Snuff BottleIn the annals of the art of the Chinese empire, jade, an ornamental stone had an exceptional implication, comparable with that of gold and precious gems. It has a very significant position during that period. This term jade is applied to distinct metamorphic rocks, which are made up of distinct silicate minerals. Jade was utilized to conceive numerous utilitarian and ritual things, from interior decorative pieces to jade burial costumes.

Jade is an attractive pebble that is available in green and white colors.

Jade is the quintessential Chinese pebble which is expensive and at the same time valuable. Jadeite material has same hardness as that of quartz, while nephrite is somewhat suppler.

Nephrite and jadeite materials were used from prehistoric periods for hard-stone carving. The hardness of jadeite is so hard that it can scratch the stone. Though Nephrite is softer, if the scratch test is done improperly, it may damage the actual material. If it cuts glass or iron alloy, it could still be numerous of the options to jade as well. They also include various forms of green quartz and prehnite.

During the rule of Qing dynasty, Snuff bottles were very famous and are used for storing powdered tobacco. At that time, though smoking is an illicit act, using snuff bottles is encouraged as it cures some illness such as headache, cold, stomach upsets.

Jade snuff bottles were made first made in Beijing and later in other locations engaged in the production of jade carving. Jade Snuff bottles are generally two to three inch large and were meant to be held in the hand. Jade Snuff bottles seem to have high demand and tactile admiration. Its availability in different colors and their imperfections made the craftsmen to bring the best carving out of them. Jade Snuff bottles are decorated with different animals and horse is one prominent animal among them. An azure and white dragon-decorated jade snuff bottle is very famous. With a flair for latest trend and style, there are several auction centers providing such bottles for bidding. With expertise and a passion for the treasures of China, these jade snuff bottles had a very high demand and their prices are still on the rise.

It is always important to verify the purchased bottle is real jade or not.

White Jade Snuff BottleJade Snuff bottles are available in different colors and amazing carvings on them. Beautifully decorated flowers, finely carved birds or animals give an adorable look to the jade snuff bottles. They are really impressive and can serve as the best interior décor.

The most valued jadeite is the one coming from Burma (Myanmar) also called Burmese Jade or Imperial Jade, it is mined in other places in the world, however in much less quantities. Today there are many materials that is being used to imitate jade and for people who are not familiar with the qualities of the authentic stone, it will be difficult to tell the difference.

Today jade is also being dyed and treated to enhance quality or colors, so extra carefulness is required when you purchasing high quality jade snuff bottles.

Jade was always an highly prized stone, and today even more, as we see the price of jade items increased. If you wish to purchase real Jade snuff bottles, take few precautions and learn about jade before investing a lot of money.

Few Tips How to tell if Jade is real:

  • Jade should feel cold to your touch, and it will take time to get more warm in your hand.
  • Both Nephrite and Jadeite has high density, so it should be heavier then the average stone of same size.
  • There are some tests you can do in order to make sure you have real jade, Click here for a great guide that will help explain about how to tell if jade is real.

There are many options to test and one should know them before purchasing such goods. As they have high demand, definitely there is a possibility of selling duplicate jade snuff bottles. Be aware of the original and duplicate jade snuff bottles. Know the available tests and implement them properly.

Never do the scratch test on others materials. Also ensure that you clear the marks with alcohol after the test is done. Performing the validation test improperly may result is damaging the actual good.