Today marks the start of the Lunar New Year and the beginning of the 15-day Chinese New Year Festival!
The festival date changes every year because it’s coordinated with the lunar calendar, not the Gregorian calendar which is the most widely used civil calendar. Also called the Spring Festival, the Chinese New Year Festival is celebrated by over 1/6th of the world’s population. It’s marked by predominantly red decorations, as red symbolizes good fortune and joy in Chinese culture, and many children receive red envelopes of money. During the Festival, vases of flowers and bowls of oranges and tangerines are placed around the house to symbolize good luck and wealth.
The Chinese New Year Festival offers the opportunity to honor deities as well as ancestors and is an occasion for families to gather together and celebrate. Every year one of China’s biggest migrations is during the time of the Spring Festival.
This celebration of the Lunar New Year uses the most fireworks of any other annual event. Setting off fireworks and firecrackers is traditionally a way to keep away bad luck, as is sweeping the house. Other taboos during the Spring Festival include:
- No crying because it brings bad luck for the entire year.
- No lending or borrowing money because it leads to debt.
- No scissors or knives because they “cut” wealth.
The beginning of the Chinese New Year also marks the transition from one year of the Zodiac to the next. In Chinese culture, every year is associated with a specific animal of the Zodiac and follows a 12 year cycle and one’s year of birth, and the animal it represents, sets many of your personality traits.
2017 was the Year of the Rooster and 2018 is the Year of the Dog.
The Chinese New Year celebrations always ends with a Lantern Festival and falls on the first full moon of the Chinese calendar. After the Lantern Festival, Chinese New Year taboos are no longer in effect and New Year decorations are taken down.
Introducing our Lunar New Year Toy Line!
The Year of the Dog holds an extra special place in our hearts here at ZippyPaws, and we were inspired to create a new line of festive toys for the 2018 Chinese New Year!!!
“We want to create products that help our customers
celebrate the traditions of their own culture and also
explore and enjoy the celebrations of other cultures.”
– Co-founder and V.P. Jennifer Cao
We’ve noticed that young consumers are curious about new cultures and want to celebrate the diversity of our changing nation. We create products that are culturally appropriate and hopefully bring awareness to different cultures.
Our cute Year of the Dog plush toy is created in honor of 2018 being the Year of the Dog. The newest addition to the NomNomz, a Chinese Take Out toy, is inspired by noodles, a staple Chinese dish, especially enjoyed during Chinese New Year celebrations. During the celebrations, noodles are not cut, as a way to represent long life. Our Chinese Dragon Lantern Burrow with embroidery of the Chinese character for “fortune” is a nod to Chinese traditions of hanging red lanterns during Lunar New Year for longevity and prosperity. The cute dragons inside the Burrow are legendary creatures in Chinese mythology, symbolizing power, strength, and prosperity.
We hope to expand to more holidays and cultures in the future to help dog owners and their pets celebrate the importance of their heritage. Do you celebrate a cultural event that you want to share with your pup? Let us know in the comments!
Wishing you all a Happy Chinese New Year!