Chinese Lantern Festival is the time when lantern appears the most. Around the fifteen day of the first month of Chinese lunar calendar (Monday, February, 22, 2016) people make festive lanterns, and kick off events of viewing lanterns and guessing lantern riddles, with a view to pray for a prosperous country and peaceful life.
In Chinese language, “Deng” ( 灯, lamp) and “Ding” ( 丁) are assonant while the latter has the meaning of population. So in the past, each and every household hung lanterns with the pattern of their surname either under the eave or in the drawing room, implying increasing population. And in ancient China, parents always prepare for each school kid in the family a chinese lantern to be lit by the teacher when the school term begins each year, illuminating students’ promising future.
Having said that, Chinese Lantern Festival is the time when lantern appears the most. Around the fifteen day of the first month of Chinese lunar calendar, people always make festive lanterns, and kick off events of viewing lanterns and guessing lantern riddles, with a view to pray for a prosperous country and peaceful life and add to happy atmosphere for the new year. So, let’s make a lantern with specific “Chinese Flavor”.
1. Cut off two paper cups to 16 well-proportioned strips from the mouth to the bottom.
2. Cut off the cup body of one cup, make the front end of another cup equally wide with the remaining bottom strips.
3. Put the mouth of the two cups face to face and paste correspondingly, use a red rope to pass through the centers of the two bottoms.
4. Squeeze in to make the lantern shape, tie a knot and fasten the red rope, and use the brocade belt to decorate the mouth and bottom.
5. Dye the lantern. Snip a rectangular red paper to well-proportioned and minute strips and fasten one end like a fringe.
6. Fix the fringe to the bottom and then a chinese lantern is made.
Published in Confucius Institute Magazine
Magazine 19. Volume 2. March 2012.
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