Beautiful Qing / aka Ch’ing Chinese Imperial Dynasty hand woven roundel depicting a five clawed dragon shown in profile – sometimes referred to as a walking or running dragon – in gold wrapped silk thread and attached to the roundel base using the ‘couched stitch’ method. This type of dragon (five clawed, in profile) was only allowed to be worn / used by prince’s of the 2nd degree, and the small size of this roundel (15cm diameter, or approximately 6”) suggests it was made for a child prince. The outer circular ‘rim’ of the roundel seems to have once been embroidered with very fine variously coloured silk threads which have, over time and use, mostly worn off leaving a yellow / gold coloured two-ply thicker continuous looped ‘base’ thread. As stated above, the gold encased ‘thick’ silk threads of the dragons body itself are attached using the ‘couching method’, which is a specific stitching technique used to attach / overlay thicker threads atop a background material (evidence of how this couching is applied can be seen in the close up photos), while fine silk threads in several colours have been stitched directly into the blue silk base to accentuate the dragons outline, for the clouds themselves and also the flaming pearl that the dragon grasps for.
This fine dragon roundel dates from the 1800’s and has been conserved and mounted, and has been professionally framed as shown above behind glass in a beautiful burlwood-laminated frame which measures 26cm x 22cm (approximately 10.25” x 8.75”).