Archives for posts with tag: chinese new year

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAW310 X H470mm

Time flies, holiday is over and its time to welcome the Kitchen God to return from his trip to the Jade Emperor.

The Kitchen God will return today with his god friends, showing them the family who did good and those who did evil deeds.  His friends will take notes and cast spells on the families before they return back to the Jade Emperor.  What is best to welcome the guest who traveled all the way from heaven to your home but feast!

For the annual task of protection and reporting, the wood block print for the Kitchen God are dated with a calendar of that year.  This particular print was for the year 1987.

Come to see the actual print and many others at the
New Year Print Exhibition

MOUNTAIN FOLKCRAFT
CHINESE WOOD BLOCK PRINT COLLECTION

reopen hours

W160xL220mm, China

Kung Kee Fat Choy!

Here is a new year print for the official reopening of the shop after Chinese New Year, 開市大吉.  The two cocks is again a homophonic heterograph play on the word lucky, 吉 (Ji), and the word cock, 雞 (Ji).

So we are back in business today, come and take a look!

Come to see the actual print and many others at the
New Year Print Exhibition

MOUNTAIN FOLKCRAFT
CHINESE WOOD BLOCK PRINT COLLECTION

File-8---DW-006-一團和氣W450xH680mm, China

On the top of the print is a hanging bat symbolizing the arrival of blessing.  The word upside down (倒) “dao” shares the same pronunciation as the word arrived (到) “dao”, while word bat (蝠) “fu” with the word blessing (福) “fu”.

Hanging on the mouth of the bat is a Buddha’s hand fruit, a symbol of happiness and a peach which symbolizes longevity.

This rounded figure is known as “yi tuan he qi” – Harmony, which is a blessing for oneself, the family, the country to the world at large.

The figure originally comes from the painting of the same title by the Ming emperor, Zhu Jian Shen, featuring the Maitreya in a lotus meditation pose.  On closer look, there are 2 scholars on either side smiling at each other with their knee touching.  The Maitreya embraces the 2 scholars with his head bend, revealing his bald head.  The 3, Buddhist, Taoist and Confucius are in harmony with each other.

一團和氣

Come to see the actual print and many others at the
New Year Print Exhibition

MOUNTAIN FOLKCRAFT
CHINESE WOOD BLOCK PRINT COLLECTION

P1040727bW300xH490mm, China

The worship of the heaven and earth is perhaps the most primitive of all faith.  Heaven and earth included all the natural and fundamental elements such as the sun, moon and the galaxy, mountain, valley, river, lake and the sea, wind, rain, thunder and lighting are all part of the believes.  The power of nature poses both blessing and treats to the human world.  All, these elements are humanized into a saint known as the God of Heaven and Earth.  Unlike the other saints, he is not housed in a temple as he symbolizes the universe as such; on Chinese New Year day, a wood block print of him will be posted up under the eaves for worship.  Other time you will come across the God of Heaven and Earth are in traditional Chinese weddings, the bride and the groom will begin their wedding ritual by worshiping this god of the universe.

Below the Jade Emperor in the middle of this wood block print is an image of a tablet where it is written, “天地三界 十方萬靈”, there are 3 dimensions, the heaven, the earth and the dead, saints are every where.

fire crackerDIA150mm, Hong Kong

A cheerful piece, like a bunch of fire crackers.  The sound of fire crackers  are symbols of festivity in China, particularly the Chinese New Year.

Once upon a time, the is a single horn creature named Eve, she is huge and bad tempered.  Around the end of the year, she will go to the village and cause chaos; fearing for their lives, the villagers will hide in the mountain.  One freezing winter, the villagers were on their way to the mountain hideout, they met a starving little boy.  They fed him with what little they have and brought him along to the cave.  The boy was curious why everyone, the young and the elders, is making an outing in such cold weather.  They told him about the Eve the monster and this is the only way to escape their death.  The boy told them he has a way of keeping Eve away, he asked them to chopped up some bamboo and to head back to the village.  When they were home, the boy asked them to pile bamboo pieces in the plaze and to hang a piece of red cloth in front of their door.  (Yes, I know you are wonder why they will trust a starving boy whom they found in the mountain, but this is how it goes …)  The boy told them to stay in door while he lure Eve into the village and at that point they would throw torches into the bamboo pile.  It is not long before the boy found the monster destroying the carts, the cloth seems to deter him from attacking the house.  Just as the villagers were about to throw the fire torches into the bamboo pile, Eve thrown the boy over with her horn.  The fire lightened up the bamboo and with its natural capsule causes a series of small explosion that frighten the Eve away.  When the villagers attended to the boy, he told them his name is Year and passed away the next day on Chinese New Year.  Though Eve has been scared away, the villagers feared her return, so on every New Year Eve, they would hang the red cloth over their doors and light up the fire crackers 爆竹.

Something Old Something New
Collectible Jewellery Collection

clay toyW100xD80xH150, China

 Today, the 14th Feburary and the 15th day of the Chinese New Year is the meeting of St. Valentine’s day of the Gregorian calendar and the Yuan Xiao (Chinese Valentine’s day) of the lunar calendar.  While there is gift, flower, kissing on St. Valentine’s day, Yuan Xiao is a more subtle affair.  In the past in China, girls are kept at home, out from the sight of the suitors.  On Yuan Xiao, for the final celebration of the Chinese New Year festivity, there will be lantern festival in town, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls are free to attend.  Almost like a high school party, romantic encountering take place.

cotton horse

L180xW80xH180mm, China

Welcome to the Year of the Horse!

The Chinese Zodiac works in a 12 years cycle, each represented by a different animal.  These 12 animals goes in the order

Rat -> Ox -> Tiger ->
Rabbit ->Dragon -> Snake ->
Horse -> Goat -> Monkey ->
Rooster -> Dog -> Pig

and then back to the Rat again.

On Chinese New Year (31st Jan 2014) begins the Year of the Horse.
It is quite easy to work out one’s zodiac animal, snake is 2013, goat is 2015 and back to the horse again in 2026.  So it is also easy for someone to work out your age too, for the ladies who don’t want to tell everyone your age, when you are prompt with the question what is your Chinese zodiac sign, you can always say that you are a Cat…

According to the legend, the Jade Emperor has a Flying Horse that he adores.  The Flying Horse was full of himself, one day he went fooling around at the Dragon palace, he killed the Turtle Saint who came to stopped him.  When the news traveled back to the Jade Emperor and the Flying Horse was punished with his wings cut off and press under the Kun Lun mountain.  The poor Horse was all alone under the mountain until 200 years later when the human walked passed, the Horse swept and said, “please help me, kind human, in return I will work hard for you.”  Out of pity, the human cut down the peach tree that was on top of the mountain and the Horse was released.  A bond was developed between the two species, the Horse became a carriage for the human, paired up and went to war.  When the selection for the zodiac animals came up, the human voted for the Horse.

For the Year of the Horse, we have a horsey toy made of cotton felt.

money god printW300xH380mm, China

Today, the fifth day of the Chinese New Year, is the day to welcome God of Wealth.  Traditionally, early in the day one will heard drums and gongs, fire crackers from the shops as well as a fest of food to invite the God of Wealth for visit, some might even go through the trouble of  welcoming him early in the night so to make sure he will not be going anywhere else.

On this new year print there are 2 Gods of Wealth, one academic and one martial.  The god of wealth is a title, it is not attributed to a single saint but a handful of saints.  The Academic God of Wealth has the task of delivering wealth and commonly refers to Fan Li and Bi Gan, both a loyal and wealth character who helps out with country and the poor.  The Martial God of Wealth is responsible for safe guarding the wealth, they are General Zhao Gong Ming and General Guan Yu, both legendary fighters.

See our other God of Wealth.


tiger hatHong Kong

For the Chinese New Year, it is common for the parents to make tiger theme costume for their children.  We have incorporated the tiger pattern with the biker’s head wrap which make it more fashionable for teenager and adults alike.

Tiger is admired for its strength and bravery, it is believe that not only will the tiger protect the children but they will also grow up to be as strong as the tiger.

tiger hat

See our our tiger items.
Original tiger hats are also available.

We will like to take this opportunity to wish you a happy Chinese New Year!

Kung Kei Fat Choy!

The shop will be closed during the festival and reopen again on 4th February (Tue) Chinese New Year day 5.

 

pork belly

W55xD60xH60mm, China

Got your appetite ready for the Chinese New Year fest?  Would this slow cook pork belly make your mouth watery?

Fear not for the cholesterol, this is in fact a piece of stone which naturally reassemble the most desirable cut the “5 layers belly” where five thin layers of muscles is sandwiched in between layers of fat.

The most famous pork belly dish in China would have to be the Dong Po Rou, invented by the Sung scholar Su Dong Po.  He was arrived in Huang Zhou as the new governor only to find half of the West Lake was covered with a kind of wild grass, he ordered for the grass to be cleaned up and developed a waterway system that not only prevented flooding but also made use of the water for cultivation.  For the revival of the beautiful West Lake, the residents brought also their precious pork and order them to him.  Su Dong Po accepted all the offerings, but instead of keep them all for himself, he asked his chef to cook the meat with his special recipe and give a piece to every household.  They have never tasted anything so delicious and here it is;

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 piece of pork belly 120x120mm
  • a couple of spring onion, cut half in length
  • few slices of ginger
  • strings
  • 50g sugar
  • 120g Chinese wine or dry sherry
  • 70g light soya sauce
  • water

METHOD

  1. tied the pork belly as if you are putting a ribbon on a present
  2. blanch it quickly in boiling water and take out
  3. in a casserole, put the spring onion and ginger slices at the bottom, then put in the pork skin side down
  4. follow by the sugar, soya sauce and wine, then top up with water, put the lid on.
  5. bring to boil then turn the heat down to the smallest and slow cook for 30 mins then turn the meat over so that the skin faces up and cook for another 30 min.
  6. cut the meat into four piece and serve with a hot bowl of rice.
  7. enjoy!

pork