This embroidery is taken from a traditional Chinese under garment, the du dou, a garment that is made by the mother for the child as an extension of love and blessing. The design of this embroidery showed the well wishes of the mother, the hope that her child would become a zhuang yuan, the scholar who came first in the official examination. Since the Siu dynasty, the imperial court has set up a system of examination to find the best scholar to take up an imperial post. This is perhaps the only way to promote one’s status in a hereditary society.
In the embroidery, there is the zhuang yuan holding a bamboo while stepping on head of the Ao fish. 獨占鰲頭, occupying the head of the so fish alone, is a symbol of being the zhuang yuan for during the ceremony with the emperor the zhuang yuan will be standing on the head of a stone carving of the ao fish.
Have a great day!
Spike is rejoicing for the cancellation of this year’s firework celebration.
This embroidery band is for the tying the end of the trouser leg. This was part of a typical Chinese costume until the introduction of the western style garments, you can still see the older generation still keeping up this tradition. Along with the long Manchu grown “qipao”, the pot bottom shoes and the pig tail imposed in China by the Manchurian. Before setting up the Qing dynasty, the Jurchen tribe was a nomadic tribe who often spend their days on horse back, the puttee was a beautiful functional accessory for their costume.
This embroidery was taken from a du dou, a traditional Chinese under garment. Du dou for men and children are mostly decorated with embroidery, normally by the mother or the lover. This embroidery is one from the mother to the child, the pattern of the embroidery is filled with object of blessing.
In the middle is a TIGER, representing bravery.
Surrounding the tiger are 6 treasures (from 12 o’clock);
GOURD – charm against evils,
BOOKS – wisdom
FAN – inject life into the dead (one of the treasures of the 8 Immortals)
SAU KAU – love
SCISSOR – charm against evils
RHINOCEROS HORN – victory
PAINTINGS – scholarly
RIM DIA220mm, China
This felt hat is part of the Beijing Opera costume, it is one that is worn by the Chou (clown) character. Within the clown category, it is separated into the fighters and the intellectuals (I guess for clowns, this would mean the non-fighters). This hat is used by a type of intellectual clowns known as the Towel Clown (Jin Zi Chou) in the role of an old and amusing man. The most famous of the Towel Clown is Chong Gung Dou, the old guard who helped the loyal prostitute Su San to escape.
This costume belonged to the wizard of the minority Dong tribe. In the villages of Guang Xi area, each village will have their own wizard, whom like Harry Potter are passed down from generations of wizards. The wizard would make offering to the gods as well as casting away the evil ghosts. Life in the villages are harsh, whenever sickness or other misfortune fell on a family, they would asked the wizard to see if the place needed cleansing.
RIM DIA160mm, China
On the Tea Horse Route, there are gangs of horse cavavanners who take up the job for transporting goods through the network of narrow mountain pathway from Yunnan. Their routes connects Beijing and other big Chinese cities to Tibet, South East Asia, India, Africa and Europe. They were the main form of trade transport before the arrival of railways and roads. Nevertheless, even today, they cavavanners are still the main porters for the Pu Erh tea of Yunnan.
The life of the cavavanners take up a lot of hardship; camping at where ever they stop, taking care of the goods and the horses, facing all sorts of danger and unexpected danger on their journey. All these made the groups unite and willful, not only do they look out for their gang members but also other gangs. The palm fiber hat is part of the gang costume that unified the group.
W300xL460mm, Hong Kong
These beautiful tote bags are the creation of CottonCar for her collaboration with Soil.
An imaginative use of our fabric with a contemporary design.
Available @ Pop-Up Bookshop Gallery @ Fringe Vault
This smart garment belongs to the Striped Hmong tribe (Hmoob Txaij) of Thailand, they are one of the 5 hill tribes in the area between Northern Thailand, Laos and Myanmar. Amongst the Hmong tribes, there are 4 sub tribe – White Hmong, Green Hmong, Striped Hmong and Hmong Chinese. The Striped Hmong’s costume have striped bands on the arms.
In China, the idea of tiger is not seen as a threat but a sign of protection. The strength and bravery of a tiger is aspired to; for the Chinese New Year, parents would dress the baby up in tiger gear, both as a protection blessing as well as a wish for their son to have the tiger’s attributes.
Apart from tiger mitten, there are tiger hats, tiger shoes, tiger du dou and of course tiger toys.