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A Guide to Chinese New Year Traditions

Apparently, it's the perfect time to go shopping!
A Guide to Chinese New Year Traditions Apparently, it's the perfect time to go shopping!

More than the handing out of red envelopes and the sharing of sticky delicacies, there are many other customs that play a big role in the preparation for Chinese New Year. For starters, it entails you to go shopping for new clothes to represent the acceptance of new things. So, in honor of the coming of the year of the Fire Monkey this February 8, we, at the StyleBible HQ, have decided to round up a few of these traditions to help you understand this colorful cultural tradition. Let’s begin.

The Preparations

In Chinese, “dust” is a homophone for the word “old” (Chen), which is why it is important to prepare the house by cleaning it entirely in order to drive the bad luck away and start anew. Further, it is also important to go shopping, as purchasing new items symbolize the welcoming of new things and getting ready for a new start. However, buying a pair of shoes is a major no-no as the word “shoes” is a homophone for the word “rough” in Cantonese and “evil” in Mandarin. Guess you’ll have to wait before you can purchase those red Aquzurra Wild Thing sandals.

 

Aquzurra Wild Thing sandals, P32,086 ($740), Lane Crawford

New Year’s Day

It’s also customary that you do not wash your hair on the first day of the lunar year. The word “hair” (Toufa) has the same character as “to get rich” (Facai), so washing your hair would mean that you are washing away the good fortune. Better opt for dry shampoo instead!

Also, you might notice some Chinese knots hanging from malls and houses. These are purely decoration pieces that were popularized in the Ming Dynasty, so wearing something like this would totally add to the festive vibe.

Studs and earrings, P399, H&M

The Food

No celebration would be complete without the food, and for Chinese New year, the star of the feast would be the dumplings (Jiaozi). The dumplings, which are shaped in the form of the Yuanbao (an ancient kind of money) are eaten to bring in wealth in the coming year. Now if you haven’t gotten the time to make your own, we suggest that you go place an order at your fave Chinese resto, stat!

 

SB recommends: Tim Ho Wan located at GF Gloretta 3, Makati; GF SM Mega Fashion Hall, Ortigas; and GF SM North EDSA, Quezon City.

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Gong Xi Fa Cai!

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