Archives for posts with tag: locket

locket necklace

DIA165mm, China

We have previous talked about the long life lockets as a blessing for the young, more detail can be found in the posts;
Silver Necklace, Kirin Boy Necklace, Happy Encounter Necklace, 13 Tai Bo Locket, Original Long Life Locket and others items such as Du Dou Embroidery, Clay Doll – A Fu.

This particular locket has been glazed with Beijing enamel, shao lan, a vitreous enamel process used typically for silver jewellery.  The powder enamel was melted at 600c to set on the silverware, cooled and reeapplied for 4-5 times.  Because of the low temperature firing, the different ingredient, the Beijing enamel is more transparent than the popular Cloisonne.

The technique was introduced from Europe in the late 17th century and like all novelty only restricted for court production.  By late Qing dynasty silver items of Beijing Enamel can be found in silversmiths.

This necklace has a hand woven string, with the silver locket anchored with a jade carving tube dyed traditional technique.  On the locket, there are two kirins on either side with the word of blessing – Fortune and Career

Locketlocket

Something Old Something New
Collectible Jewellery

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happy encounter necklace

DIA195mm, China

Now for something old, this is an original long life locket necklace.

There are a lot of symbolism on this necklace.

First, Survival –  the Locket – Long Life Locket, a lock with would secure one’s life to this work.  This have been also featured in the following blogs; Original Long Life Locket, 13 Tai Bao Locket, Kirin Boy Necklace, Locket, Silver Necklace, A Fu, Du Dou.  On this particular locket, it has written the blessing of longevity and prosperity.

Then, Happiness is a spirit that all humanity long for, the Chinese too uses a lot of symbols for it.  The two children hanging on either side of the necklace is call “Happy Encounters”,  two of them meeting up, enjoying the company of each other.  They can also be found in another one of our Original Long Life Locket.

Third, Protector – the two rounded capsules which are in fact bells in the form of a tiger head, a symbol of protection for the child.  Tiger, an animal of power has always been worshiped, the Chinese would entrust their children to be under their protection.  Other toys and children’s clothing also shared the same effect; Tiger Headband, Tiger Du Dou, Tiger Shoes, Tiger Squeak, Cloth Tiger Toy.  The bell would add another layer of that protection of the power to chase the devil away, see Bell Necklace.

13 locket

DIA165mm, Hong Kong

To keep everyone safe for the rumor of today being the end of the world, we have an old long life lockets for tonight’s post.

Long life lockets are normally given to a baby on its 100th day’s birthday by the grandmother as a blessing for the child.  In old China when mortality rate is high, the locket is a symbol of locking the child’s life to this world.  There are 4 words on this locket, “13 Tai Bao”, Tai Bao is a high level court official whose duty is to care and guide the emperor.  Legend has it Guang Hui Wang has 13 sons who  are on earth to care and guide humanity.  The 13 Tai Bao is so well known for their protection that even a famous herbal tea for securing pregnancy is named after them.

See our other references of the long life lockets; Silver Necklace, Clay Doll – A Fu, Du Dou Embroidery, Locket.

Embroidery DIA200mm, China

This embroidery is from a silk du dou, a more elaborated version than the one shown in the previous post – du dou.  The du dou is the traditional undergarment for the Chinese; it was invented by Nu Wa and Fu Xi, the Chinese version of Adam and Eve and this is their version of the fig leave.  The embroidery has a symbolic meaning of fertility; in the center is a baby with a long life locket, under him is is a pomegranate (a fruit of many seeds), over him is a bat (which has the same pronunciation as “blessing”)

W50xD40xH100mm, China

This is the clay toy of  Dah A Fu, we have previous talked about his story in an early post “Clay Toy A-Fu“.  Most of the A-Fu figurine have him seated, this is an unusual version, but from his accessories we can determined that he is A-Fu.  On his head, he is wearing peony (a symbol of wealth), the costume is the five fok jacket (a symbol of ease and comfort), around his neck is a locket (a symbol of longevity).  In the seated version, he is also hugging a lion with green fur (a symbol of protection from evil) and wearing a pair of court shoes (successful in the court examination).  All the wishes from the parents to the child are projected onto the figurine.

L60xD20xH50mm, China

The longevity lock, a tradition for the Chinese babies hundred day celebration, the child will keep it on till his 12th birthday.  The Chinese believes that life will be locked just as a door or a trunk.  In a way its a kind of blessing given to the child by the elders of the family.  Its history started from the Han dynasty, on the 5th of lunar May, every household would hang a 5 colour rope on the door as a blessing against the plague.  By the Jin dynasty, the 5 colour rope would be tied on to the arms of women and the children as a blessing.  The tradition extending into the empirical court in the Han dynasty, the Emperor would  give out the rope to all his ministers on the 5th of lunar May.  The rope became more elaborated by Ming dynasty and became the silver locket we have here.