LAS VEGAS — A new kind of equine elegance galloped into the Winter Las Vegas Home Furnishings and Gift Market earlier this month. It wasn't only the Year of Horse on the Chinese Lunar calendar, it was clearly the year of horse decor, as well.
According to Chinese astrology, this is the year of the wood horse, applicable to people born in 1954 and 2014. (The year of the horse comes every 12 years, and is characterized, in turn, by the five elements of metal, earth, fire, water and wood.) Intelligent, restless, ambitious, hard-working, impatient, adaptable and romantic, other people born in the Year of the Horse include Kobe Bryant, James Franco, Jerry Seinfeld, Jennifer Lawrence, Denzel Washington and both Franklin D. and Teddy Roosevelt. As far as we know, the only people who had trouble with wooden horses were the Greeks.
The horse year means rapid success, so Rough Riders aside, manufacturers decided not to look a gift horse in the mouth and hopped on the back of this trend with unbridled enthusiasm. Here is a roundup of the steeds they were showing:
-Blue Ocean Traders added a pre-rusted cast-iron pony to its outdoor, indoor sculpture collection, which also includes a pre-rusted horse's head for a garden bed.
-Go Home showed several equine elements for home decor including an 80-inch-high teak steed and a smaller 34-inch table-top version in driftwood. Both are created by assembling smaller pieces of wood.
-You could literally saddle up and watch TV on Cisco Brothers' leather horse. It gives new meaning to the term "clothes horse," as you toss your discarded wardrobe on its back. The company also debuted Leonardo, a massive sculpture cleverly constructed of recycled auto and motorcycle parts. It's best kept corralled in a room with cathedral ceilings.
-A tamer, more playful look was seen at Silk Route. It displayed a papier-mache Chindi horse wrapped in colorful yarn, handmade in Nepal. The company also showed a giraffe, a pig and a lion.
-A & B Home Inc. was in step with its white porcelain horse bust, the right size for a bookshelf or mantel. It did, however, go off the reservation with its own tall wooden horse made in Indonesia.
-Studio A showed Ming Dynasty, a small wire horse sculpture.
(Contact Patricia Sheridan: email@example.com or 412-263-2613.)