Traditional Chinese Jewelry of Qixi Festival

Traditional Chinese Jewelry of Qixi Festival

The Qixi Festival, also known as the Chinese Valentine's Day, is one of China's traditional festivals and holds significant importance in Chinese culture. During the Qixi Festival, people engage in various traditional activities such as Qiqiao (skill-practice), admiring the moon, and consuming Qiaoguo (special fruits). Additionally, individuals adorn themselves with jewelry that carries traditional cultural characteristics, such as hairpins, hair ornaments, rings, bracelets, necklaces, and more. 

"The seventh day of the seventh lunar month, also known as the Qixi Festival or Qiqiao Festival, is a longstanding traditional Chinese festival." Qixi Festival embodies the essence of "completeness" and "harmony" within Chinese traditional culture.

"Hair ornaments, hair ornaments with pendants, hairpins, bracelets, necklaces, flower hairpins attached to dimples, forehead, and topknots, portraying the elegance, charm, and ambiance crafted by women's wisdom." Throughout the extensive history of the Chinese nation, the ancient Qixi Festival carries a multitude of "Eastern fashion" elements. As we enter the Suining Plaza South Old Phoenix Jewelry Huaihai Image Store, we'll recount the tale of the ancient "Eastern fashion" of ornaments, guiding you into the intricate opulence of classical Chinese scenarios.

 

Hairpins

 

During festive occasions, specific customs and jewelry must be worn, and distinctive attire must be worn to convey the theme of the festival.

In ancient times, the wearing of jewelry on women's heads was highly meticulous. Women wore hairpins with dangling tassels, with the tassels fashioned into hair ornaments called "steps" that produced sound even before the person's arrival.

 

Beauty emanates not only from delicate features and elegant forms but also from the demeanor, charm, and atmosphere a person creates.

 

Bracelets

 

In the realm of elegance, each aspect holds its own charm. He gifts her a bracelet, and she fastens her handkerchief to the bracelet tied around her wrist, returning the gesture with a jade pendant.

Chinese people's attention to detail and pursuit of beauty are embedded within these intricacies. If you carefully examine portraits of ancient beauties, such as the Ming Dynasty's "Portrait of the Beautiful Lady Xi Shi," you will often notice women holding linked jade rings. Traditional Chinese craftsmanship has included a "carved openwork" technique since the Shang Dynasty, capable of engraving multiple interlocking rings from a single piece of material, symbolizing "everlasting love." This evolved into a symbol of emotions and love.

 

Necklaces

 

The poetry of antiquity is reflected in every detail of life. Gifting a necklace holds special significance. A necklace symbolizes being tightly bound together, wishing for only each other in one's heart. Necklaces are worn close to the heart and involve a locking mechanism, symbolizing a desire to be together for a lifetime. When gifted between singles or friends, a necklace signifies "I want to be in love with you," as the homophone for necklace sounds like "being in love." For couples, gifting a necklace implies the intention to hold each other tightly.

Ancient women possessed multiple sets of jewelry and changed them according to different festivals, with unique patterns for each occasion. Assembling a bride's dowry was a significant undertaking for parents, ensuring their daughter was equipped with all the necessary accessories. In the Song Dynasty, this was referred to as the "Four Seasons Crown Flower."

 

Golden Abacus

 

As the abacus clinks, gold flows like a river. No other object can compare to the allure of this ancient tradition. The abacus, originating in China, boasts a history of over 2,600 years and stands as a significant invention of ancient China. Prior to the introduction of Arabic numerals, the abacus was a widely used calculating tool worldwide. The gold abacus has evolved into a gift that husbands present to their wives, symbolizing a future life well-arranged and planned, emphasizing careful accounting without nitpicking, all while wishing for prosperity in the couple's life together.

 

Gold Cicada

 

Before departing, she presents him with a gold cicada. This is an exclusive jade pendant for successful imperial examination candidates during the Ming and Qing Dynasties, symbolizing making an extraordinary achievement and passing the imperial examination. Playfully, she draws a gold ingot from her sleeve. The wit, intelligence, and aesthetic taste of ancient women are showcased in these relaxed and leisurely moments.

 

Dragon and Phoenix Pendant

 

A dragon and phoenix pendant typically consists of a dragon pendant and a phoenix pendant paired together. The dragon pendant symbolizes divinity and embodies wishes for the wearer's status and power, signifying the rise of the dragon and safety. Worn by men, it represents a prosperous career and a journey towards success.

In China, the phoenix brings happiness and auspiciousness, naturally including the happiness of love. As a result, the phoenix also holds the symbolism of love.

Pairing the dragon and phoenix together signifies prosperity, mutual affection, making it suitable for couples to wear jointly, blessing their love with sweetness, happiness, harmony, and beauty.

 

Lucky Lock

 

A finely crafted lucky lock adorned with auspicious clouds, engraved with "wealth, fortune, and marriage." Lucky locks are intricately designed, rich in creative imagination from their shape to their decoration. The shapes include ruyi (a traditional ornament symbolizing good fortune), bats, butterflies, and more. They also feature elaborate and intricate patterns like the Eight Treasures of Luck, lotus and bat motifs, auspicious clouds, and mythical creatures. These shapes and patterns carry abundant auspicious meanings.

 

Wine Pot

 

Sitting face-to-face, they toast and sip, exchanging their cups when they're half full. After sharing a drink as a couple, they hope to share both the joys and sorrows of life, mutually supporting one another.

"When two souls are united for a long time, it's not about every day and night." This is the most genuine and simple belief in love for the Chinese people. Raising their cups together, ensuring family harmony and prosperity, finding joy in life, pursuing happiness – for thousands of years, these have been the core elements of the Chinese people's view on marriage, love, and family.

 

Phoenix Crown and Red Veil

 

In the bridal chamber, under candlelight, he receives recognition and fame, dressed in splendid attire. That day falls on the Qixi Festival, historically known as the Qiqiao Festival or the Daughter's Festival.

During the Ming and Qing Dynasties, if a husband obtained a high-ranking government position, his lawful wife would concurrently receive a decree known as "gao feng," which is somewhat akin to a qualification certificate. This made her an official "gao ming fu ren," granting her the privilege of wearing the "phoenix crown and red veil."

According to historical records, the practice of using pearl crown ornaments and veils as signs of noble status emerged during the Song Dynasty and continued into the Ming and Qing Dynasties. In the Ming Dynasty's formal regulations, only the empress's crown could be adorned with both a dragon and a phoenix, termed the "phoenix crown." The crown of the crown princess could only be adorned with a "fei niao" (pheasant bird), known as the "fei crown."

As the level of rank descended, the number of pheasant bird ornaments also decreased. However, because the distinctions between the images of phoenixes, pheasant birds, and feathers were not particularly noticeable on the intricate pearl and jade crowns, people colloquially referred to all these crowns as "phoenix crowns."

 

Begging for Skills, Paying Respects to the Moon

 

After a decade of diligent studies without recognition, he achieves fame that spreads across the world with a single feat. Indeed, he aced the imperial examination, adorned in fine attire, returning to his hometown in splendor. This day coincides with the Qixi Festival, previously known as the Begging for Skills Festival or Daughter's Festival.

The custom of Qixi's "begging for skills" dates back to the Han Dynasty. Through various methods such as sacrifices, divination, and prayers, ancient people confirmed their own skills and dexterity. Over the millennia, this unique form of "begging for skills" has become the most vital element of the Qixi Festival, giving rise to its luminous, distinct, and culturally rich significance. 

Following local customs in Xuzhou, women also sweep the courtyard, set up tables, offer fruits and flowers, pay respects to the moon, and pray for blessings in their marriage on the evening of Qixi.

In conclusion, the Qixi Festival features a wide variety of traditional Chinese jewelry, each with its unique cultural significance and historical background.

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