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How to decorate your home for Chinese New Year

Put your craft hat on, it’s time to make some decorations!

To get your place Chinese New Year ready, there’s some glorious decorations you can use to enliven things up a bit. From lovely lanterns to gorgeous floral arrangements, here’s our guide on how to decorate your home for Chinese New Year.

Chinese Red Lanterns

Nothing embodies Chinese New Year quite like the iconic red lantern. These scarlet spherical paper lights are everywhere in China. The 15th and final day of Chinese New Year is the Lantern Festival where families will hang them in their houses and children will carry them to temple. The red lantern is said to ward off bad luck. You can buy them from Wan Jun in Chinatown or why not try making your own with our simple guide?

You will need:

Rectangles of red paper

Scissors

1) Fold a sheet of the paper in half lengthways, and from the folded edge snip along the paper in 1 inch strips leaving a half in gap at the end.

2) Open up the paper and loop round into a cylindrical lantern shape, so both ends of the paper join. Fasten together with glue or sticky tape.

3) Snip a 1 inch strip of red paper and attached to the top of the lantern to create a handle. Voila! Your Chinese New Year lantern is ready to hang where you like.

Paper Cuttings

These intricately designed paper cuttings are found on doors and windows of Chinese homes during Chinese New Year. They’ll likely feature a lucky animal or plant to usher in the family’s wish for the coming year. For instance, the pomegranate symbolises fertility while the mandarin duck signifies love. Seek paper cuttings out at Guanghwa Bookshop in Chinatown or create them yourself at home. A sharp craft knife is needed so they’re not suitable for children to make.

You will need:

Coloured A4 paper

A sharp craft knife

A cutting board

A pencil

1) Draw out your design carefully in pencil on the paper

2) Taking great care, use the craft knife to cut out the shapes of your design to make the pattern or picture.

3) Hang up on your wall or windows for Chinese New Year

Floral Arrangements

Pretty floral arrangements play a big part in adorning homes at Chinese New Year. As Chinese New Year is also known as Spring Festival, beautiful blooms herald the arrival of this time of year and wish for a prosperous 12 months ahead. The most popular floral arrangements will be orchids, peonies, plum blossoms and peach blossoms. Pick some up from your local florist and place them in vases around your home.

Fabulous Fruit

Trays full or oranges and tangerines are commonly found in multiple rooms of Chinese homes at Chinese new Year. Easy to replicate you cry! Indeed, but there’s a twist, there must be exactly 8 pieces of fruit as 8 is the symbol of longevity and infinite good.

Chinese New Year Greetings Cards

The exchange of greetings cards is a Chinese New Year tradition with people sending them to friends, family and teachers. Words of blessing and wisdom adorn them. Why not pick up greetings cards from Guanghwa Bookshop in Chinatown and surprise your friends?

Celebrate Chinese New Year in Chinatown with the great parade on Sunday 18th February 2018, kicking off at 10am on Charing Cross Road.

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