Relevant categories: Tables,Seating and Chairs
(Above photo - Damascan Side Table Octagonal Arabic Interiors Inlay )
From its name, Syrian furniture originated in Syria during the Islamic period. Even though Syria was a vast kingdom covering places such as Jerusalem, Aleppo was one of the major furniture-making centres. Some of the furniture pieces produced during that period can be found in religious buildings in Palestine and Syria. The furniture came from a vibrant woodworking industry that existed in Islamic Syria and still exists today. Furnituremakers used willow, walnut, oak, and firewood to produce various types of beautiful furniture pieces.
(Above photo - Pair Damascan Chairs Inlay Arabic Syrian Interiors 1920 )
Syrian carpenters made furniture and other architectural objects such as erecting roofs and ceilings, manufacturing doors, etc. But that was only in addition to making boxes, cabinets, chairs, and tables. That was then. Today, the Syrian furniture industry continues to thrive even amidst the long-running civil war. Apart from carpenters, furniture workshops have different types of expert craftsmen that work together to make each piece of furniture. They include the following:
Artisans for cutting different woods into distinct geometric shapes and patterns. The same artisan or a different one may then fuse the pieces to make a solid.
A carpenter who cuts the wood and makes skeletons of different furniture parts such as the backgammon board. The same carpenter may then place the veneer of marquetry into the skeleton frame.
Artisans for inlaying embellishments such as mother of pearl in the designated slots and polishing the furniture’s tint finish. Usually, the artisan applies numerous coats of varnish made from natural shellac.
An overall expert or maalem to ensure that the furniture-making process takes place without any mishaps.
(Above photo - Damascan Inlay Side Table Octagonal Top )
One of the clearest things about Syrian and Moorish furniture, whether chairs, divans, cupboards, and tables, are the intricate inlays of mother of pearl. Whether antique or modern pieces, they are the most beautiful furniture pieces you will find anywhere. The Arabian art of inlaying dates back to ancient Assyrian and Egyptian empires.
(Above photo - Arabic Arm Chair Antique Damascan Furniture Inlay 1920 )
From the 7th century, when Damascus was established as the Syrian empire’s capital, the rulers encouraged its citizens to work with mosaics. When the Umayyad Mosque was constructed in the 8th century, artisans used large-scale inlaying, making it one of the most beautiful. Since then, the art of inlaying has taken root in Damascus, resulting in the beautiful Damascan furniture.
(Above photo - Damascan Coffee Side Table - Arabesque Brass Tray )
After the Ottoman occupation of Syria, the Arabs lost power over the territory, focusing more on their crafts and industry. Master artisans have passed on the craft of inlaying wood and metal to apprentices, continuing a tradition that’s celebrated throughout the world. It involves making inlays of contrasting patterns in all wood types to make beautiful items. An artisan pre-designs the wood, after which different material forms are sank. In the past, pieces of different woods like bone, walnut, oak, lemon, or ebony were used to fill the hollows. Today, artisans use the mother of pearl, and different forms of plastics are used to make the inlays.
If you are looking for Damascan and Syrian furniture to buy, we have the best pieces in our shop.
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