The Lunar New Year as a celebration is observed by numerous cultures, although it originated in ancient China. In the US it is more commonly known as Chinese New Year. Signature red lanterns with gold accents, fireworks and dancing dragons are highlights of celebrations where all are welcomed in China Town Sections of major cities such as New York, San Francisco, Boston, Philadelphia and more.
But what is it, and why is it different than the New Year we celebrate on January first? In the US and many other countires we use the Gregorian calendar, which is a solar calendar based on our Sun's cycles and named after Pope Gregory XIII. Lunar New Year is the beginning of a calendar year whose months are moon cycles, based on the lunar calendar or lunisolar calendar instead of sun cycles. It is featured in the Chinese calendar of the East Asian cultural sphere, the Hindu-Buddhist calendars of South and Southeast Asia, the Islamic calendar and the Jewish calendar in the Middle East, and is also celebrated by the indigenous people of Canada.
In Chinese it is also commonly reffered to as the Spring Festival, the spring season in the lunisolar calendar traditionally starts with lichun, the first of the twenty-four solar terms which the festival celebrates around the time of the Chinese New Year. Marking the end of winter and the beginning of the spring season, observances traditionally take place from January 21st to February 20th.
Chinese New Year is one of the more important holidays in Chinese culture. It is associated with many myths and customs. The festival was traditionally a time to honor deities as well as ancestors. Within China, regional customs and traditions concerning the celebration of the New Year vary widely, however the evening preceding the New Year's Day is frequently regarded as an occasion for Chinese families to gather for the annual reunion dinner. It is also a tradition for every family to thoroughly clean their house, in order to sweep away any ill fortune and to make way for incoming good luck. Another custom is the decoration of windows and doors with red paper-cuts and couplets. Popular themes among these paper-cuts and couplets include good fortune or happiness, wealth, and longevity. Other activities include lighting firecrackers and giving money in red paper envelopes.
During this time we choose to celebrate the amazing history and culture of the Chinese people. And each year we look forward to celebrating with a delicious Chinese Dinner and a trip to Chinatown in NYC to join in the festivities! We also love to talk with our Chinese friends and endeavor to learn more about ways to appriciate their customs and traditions.
This year follow along on Instagram as we celebrate, learn and share with you. We will continue our January Blue and White Sale through the month so that you can add to your collection and buy a special piece to commemorate the New Year!
Here are a few favorite pieces in our Newest Chioinserie Collection!
- 📷 earthpix