Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Aloha to Beijing - Cloisonne Factory and Country Lunch

On our way to the Great Wall, we stopped by a cloisonne factory.   From Wikipedia (link),

Cloisonné is an ancient technique for decorating metalwork objects, in recent centuries using vitreous enamel, and in older periods also inlays of cut gemstones, glass, and other materials. The decoration is formed by first adding compartments (cloisons in French) to the metal object by soldering or adhering silver or gold wires or thin strips placed on their edges. 

By the 14th century this enamel technique had spread to China, where it was soon used for much larger vessels such as bowls and vases; the technique remains common in China to the present day, and cloisonné enamel objects using Chinese-derived styles were produced in the West from the 18th century.

These ladies have a special talent to create the "compartments" ... 

... and paint them for a beautiful effect! 

We purchased a small vase with the dragon (male) and phoenix (female), demonstrating balance.  I claimed it as my anniversary gift.  Below are larger vases that were tempting.

I can't imagine how long it would take to create this giant vase ...

... or this grandfather clock!

We stopped at a "country" restaurant to fortify ourselves for the Great Wall. 

I'm not a fan of green beans ... but these spiced beans were devoured by the entire family (even my kids who don't care for spicy food).

I also enjoyed the chicken with chestnuts ... 

... while the kids dined on sweet and sour pork.   Alas, no fortune cookies as they are an American creation.


Kim in Korea


  1. Oooh... the chicken dish looks good. The vase is BIG...

  2. OMG those vases are beautiful.

  3. What beautiful vases, I want one!!! The food looks absolutely delicious, and I could eat it right now.

  4. Oh, how gorgeous - and happy anniversary, mine is this month too! And I had no idea the fortunes were American lol.

  5. I love visiting places to see how things are made. I'll bet the cloisonne factory was fascinating.

  6. Those vases are so beautiful and the sweet and sour pork dish looks so tasty.

  7. I didn't know that fortune cookies were an American creation. Loved the pictures.

  8. Beautiful vases. The grandfather clock is quite impressive too. Happy Anniversary!

  9. Such beautiful creations....I don't think I would do good at visiting China, I do not like Chinese food at all. But I do love all the beautiful pictures that you have been sharing and the wonderful colors that they use in everything.

  10. So beautiful! How did you ever choose just one small vase?? Food looks yummt!

  11. Hey Kim - I'm enjoying following your adventures in China! But, I had to laugh about this post. I went to China when I was stationed in Korea in 1996 - we stopped at a cloisonne factory on the way to the Great Wall (probably the same one, the grandfather clock looks very familiar). I did buy a vase there - which looks almost EXACTLY like the blue one in the very first photo you posted. :)