The Chinese First Lady’s wardrobe

This year, the eyes of the Chinese fashion world have been attracted by the ‘Liyuan Style’, which means the fashion style of Peng Liyuan, who is the first lady of China.

Peng Liyuan is considered to be a style icon, and well positioned to be the focus of media. Let’s see some of the lovely clothing the first lady wore in 2014.

 lady fashion

Peng Liyuan seems to be an epitome of Oriental chic at a state dinner at the Elysee Palace in Paris in March. Her black cheongsam-style gown featuring a sheer floral-patterned top makes her overall look modern and elegant.

 lady fashion

For her final stop on the European trip in Belgium, Peng Liyuan opted for a lovely traditional embroidered Chinese outfit. The fabric, fine embroidery and soft colors all add up to an elegant style.

 lady fashion

In May 2014, during the 4th Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia summit in Shanghai, Peng Liyuan wore a black tailcoat style jacket, and a graphic batik print, white and navy floor length dress, enhancing her style-icon image.

 lady fashion

At the welcoming ceremony for the Congolese President in Beijing in June, Peng Liyuan opted a blue-and-white printed jacket, with a long blue skirt and dark blue heels, giving her a Chinese style that looks modern.

 lady fashion

In July 2014, during her visit to Seoul, Peng Liyuan amazed Korean media with her lovely clothing choices featuring white and green, with details such as the exquisite flower brooch, cute little handbag and elegant heels.

 lady fashion

In August 2014, Peng Liyuan accompanied her husband Xi Jinping to the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing. She wore an embroidered blue Cheongsam, with a matching small purse, displaying lovely traditional Chinese style.

 lady fashion

When Peng Liyuan landed in Ahmedabad in September, she wore a pretty pink dress, with a flowing scarf stitched to one side. She accessorized her look with a white clutch, cream pearl studs and beige suede heels.

 lady fashion

In October 2014, Peng Liyuan was named WHO ambassador for the fight against HIV/AIDS in Beijing. She attended the event in a formal long jacket accented with the red ribbon symbolizing support for the fight against HIV/AIDS.

 lady fashion

In November 2014, Peng Liyuan wowed all with her delicately embroidered Cheongsam when she showed up at the APEC in Beijing.

 lady fashion

In December 2014, Peng Liyuan opted for a formal grey jacket and a knee-length polka dot skirt with a chic pin when the South African President Jacob Zuma paid a state visit to China, showing her graceful style as the Chinese first lady.

by Xiao Xiao xiaoxiao@interactchina.com    

About Interact China

—————————————————————————————————————————–
“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 2000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.
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P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

Clay figurines capture spirit of life

Working in clay may remind many Chinese people of their happy childhoods.

There are many different styles of clay-sculpting all over China, but Zhang Clay Figurine in Beijing is among the most famous practitioners of the art.

As the fourth generation in the family preserving the traditional technique, Zhang Chang, 71, bears the duty of sharing Chinese history.

Zhang Chang, 71, is the fourth generation of his family preserving the traditional techniques of making clay figurines.
 Chinese Crafts

“The ancestor of Chinese clay figurine-making is probably Nuwa,” he jokes, citing the goddess in ancient mythology who used clay to create human beings.

His family business can be dated back to the mid-19th century, when Zhang Mingshan, from Zhejiang province, settled in Tianjin. Craftsmen of the time absorbed Western painting elements into their art to create more vivid details. Though clay figurines were traditionally considered to be grassroots pieces, the delicately made art was soon cherished by royal families in Beijing, especially by the Empress Dowager Cixi (1835-1908).

Zhang explains that he keeps adjusting his work until the clay has completely dried; sometimes the making of one piece will last as long as one year as Zhang seeks just the right mood.

Zhang, who is now an art professor at Tsinghua University, has compiled academic works to document the traditional craft.

Some of the pieces by Zhang Clay Figurine.
 Chinese Crafts

“The figurine-making conveys not only aesthetics and creativity, but experiences of life in society,” he says. “The inheritance of the skill in our family reflects a special spirit to guide generation after generation to find their way when chasing an art career.

“However, not everyone in the family will love the work. Only when they love it will they inject their personal feelings into the work. Figurines made by different people thus have different characteristics even though they follow the same discipline.”

Zhang says a person can usually learn the basics of figurine-making within three months, but much more practice is needed to perfect the art.

“Masters are only ushers at the gate, and each student needs to develop a personal understanding in their heart.”

by Xiao Xiao xiaoxiao@interactchina.com    

About Interact China

—————————————————————————————————————————–
“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 2000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.
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P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

Asian Decor – 7 Quick Tips on How to Decorate With Asian Style

As the US population becomes more and more diverse, people are becoming exposed to many styles of décor from around the world. Asian home décor is fast becoming one of the more popular decorating styles. And while many people are looking to add an Asian influence to their home, few really know how to correctly accomplish this theme.

Here are 7 quick tips you can use to decorate your home with Asian-style:

1. Whenever you are redecorating a room you always should start with color as your foundation. Asian style is characterized by several colors – red, brown, gold, gray, and tan. Red is the most prominent color, because it is believed to provide good luck. In general though, natural earth tones typify Asian style. Also, all woods should be a dark chocolate/burgundy tone.

 Chinese home decor

2. Next, you want to consider adding texture to the room. Natural materials, such as bamboo, rice paper, and rock, are very important to Asian décor. Shoji room dividers, bamboo candles and picture frames, and rock gardens and fountains are perfect additions to your décor.

 Chinese home decor

3. Since Asian culture is very nature-centric, adding plants to your décor is a must. Lucky bamboo is very popular and is a very inexpensive and quick way to add Asian style to your bedroom or bathroom. Bonsai trees are also a surefire way to continue your cultural makeover.

 Chinese home decor

4. The use of sacred animals is a great way to add a touch of the orient to your home décor. Elephants in particular are the symbol of physical and mental strength along with responsibility and loyalty. Ridden by gods and owned by kings, elephants were said to bring good luck and prosperity. Find pillows or art that depict sacred animals.

 Chinese home decor

5. Asian wall décor is another important consideration. Written scrolls with Chinese writing symbols will lend an instant Asian appeal to your décor. Japanese Noren curtains, while intended for doorways, also make great wall decorations.

 Chinese home decor

6. The Buddhist religion has a strong influence in Asian décor. Try adding sandstone or wooden Buddha statues to your bookshelves. Buddha masks will also add a calming and serene effect to your home environment.

 Chinese home decor

7. And lastly, Asian décor is characterized by its’ minimalist style. Don’t overpower your home décor with too many Asian accents. A few key furnishings will go a long way to adding the cultural appeal you are looking for.

by Xiao Xiao xiaoxiao@interactchina.com    

About Interact China

—————————————————————————————————————————–
“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 2000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.
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P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

Luxuriant rosewood evokes imperial style

A legacy of old-time royal luxury, rosewood furniture is a living fossil of a privileged lifestyle.

 Chinese furniture

Rosewood carving, which turns fine material into exquisite artworks, is among the best gifts history has left China’s capital.

Most sandalwood is produced in tropical areas – little is grown in China. But the nation became the biggest repository of rosewood timber during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).

Zheng He’s historical expeditions in the early 15th century to Southeast and South Asia brought back large amount of the luxuriant wood to make furniture cherished by the emperors and nobles.

Rosewood was continuously shipped to China during that dynasty. Since a rosewood tree grows very slowly, only 15 percent of the timber is suitable for carving. The world’s sandalwood reserve was almost used up in the subsequent Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), ending a flourishing era of the art.

 Chinese furniture

Nevertheless, no matter how rare the material is, the craftsmanship is even more precious. Only the best artisans have been allowed to touch the fine timber because rosewood carving requires the most complicated technique among all woods and needs an extraordinary scrutiny of details, experts say.

People can still feel the classical flavor through these splendid pieces and enjoy this look at the past.

by Xiao Xiao xiaoxiao@interactchina.com    

About Interact China

—————————————————————————————————————————–
“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 2000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.
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P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

China traces health condition of face-tattooed women

Chinese authorities are tracking the health records of the last group of women whose faces were tattooed in a southwestern tribal tradition as they seek to preserve the vanishing ethnic culture.

 Chinese Culture

Chinese authorities are tracking the health records of the last group of women whose faces were tattooed in a southwestern tribal tradition as they seek to preserve the vanishing ethnic culture.

The painful tradition of tattooing simple patterns across the nose, mouth and cheeks of women in the Dulong ethnic minority existed for hundreds of years, believed to have started in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).

One of China’s 56 ethnic groups, the Dulong ethnic minority has a total population of around 7,000 living in the Dulongjiang Village in southwest Yunnan province.

The custom is believed to have started in the late Ming Dynasty about 360 years ago. The Dulong people were often attacked by other ethnic groups and women were taken as slaves. To avoid being raped, the Dulong women had their faces tattooed to make themselves less attractive.

But after the founding of New China, the tradition began to taper off and the number of Dulong women carrying remnants of the tradition in Yunnan province is dwindling.

In 2007, the number of woman with facial tattoos was 130. Now there remain just 26. The youngest of the 26 is 54, while the oldest is in her 90s.

“We have created records for the 26 women, while doctors check their health condition each month,” said Zhou Lixin, a police officer of the Dulongjiang Village in Nujiang Prefecture, Yunnan.

Doctors have been measuring vital signs such as weight and blood pressure, as well as other physical indices. They also bring medicine to the women and take them to hospital if necessary.

“They are the last face-tattooed women,” he said. “Their stories will become history, but we want them to live longer and healthier.”

by Xiao Xiao xiaoxiao@interactchina.com    

About Interact China

—————————————————————————————————————————–
“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 2000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.
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P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

6 popular icons on traditional Chinese architecture

Traditional Chinese architecture has a long history and glorious achievements. The buildings not only have practical functions, but also bear important artistic values. How do they combine the two? Let’s see from some details.

 Chinese Culture

Imperial red gates are frequently seen in palace and temple. The color is not pure red but between red and orange. It represents nobility and authority. The imperial red gate makes people feel solemn.

 Chinese Culture

Stone, wood or brick sculptures are also an important part of Hui-style architecture. Sculptures of people, mountains and flowers on bricks are an important art form, mainly seen on temples, graves and houses. No matter where they are, either on a door, window or roof, they are intact paintings.

 Chinese Culture

Flying eaves were often used on the roofs of ancient Chinese architecture. The cocking up eave looks like a bird unfolding its wings. The eaves are often sculpted with auspicious animals including a dragon, crane or fish.

 Chinese Culture

Hollowed-out patterns deliver different messages. For example, a pattern with a magpie means good luck, a bat hanging upside down means good fortune comes. The hollowed–out design not only beautifies the building, but also has the function of lighting, ventilation, dust proofing and space division.

 Chinese Culture

A slope roof is another icon of traditional Chinese architecture. The design not only makes the building look solemn and flowing, but also has many practical functions. The slope roof design can save energy because it helps make the house not too hot in summer and not too cold in winter. Also, rainwater drains right off.

 Chinese Culture

White walls with black tiles are often used in South China’s residences. The pristine and elegant design makes the residence look like an ink painting.

by Xiao Xiao xiaoxiao@interactchina.com    

About Interact China

—————————————————————————————————————————–
“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 2000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.
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P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!

Chinese Jade

General Introduction

Jade has a history in China of at least four thousand years. Unknown to some, it is found contained within the development of religion and civilization, having moved from the use of decoration on to the others such as the rites of worship and burial. Although other materials like gold, silver and bronze were also used, none of these have ever exceeded the spiritual position that jade has acquired in people’s minds – it is associated with merit, morality, grace and dignity. In the funeral objects of the people of the Western Han Dynasty (206 BC – 24 AD), for example, we can see only high officials were buried with jade articles.

 Chinese Jade

Jade has influenced all walks of life. In ancient times, people expressed abstract notions with concrete patterns of Chinese character, which were influenced by Taoism and Buddhism. Jade craftworks were among the most precious and luxurious ones; people wore and decorated rooms to indicate loyalty, elegance, beauty, and eternity. The most popular patterns were: peach (longevity), mandarin duck (love), deer (high official ranks), bat (blessing), fish (affluence), double phoenixes (thriving), bottle (safety), lotus (holiness), bamboo (lofty conduct), and fan (benevolence), etc.

Types of Jade

Jadeite

As early as the 16th century, it was believed to be a precious and hard jade with healing qualities for the human stomach and kidneys. Since it was brought into China during the early Qing Dynasty (1644 – 1911), it had been doted on greatly. It contains an iron component which appears red, chromium that appears green, and many other colored types. Known as the ‘king of jade’, it is usually a more expensive type.

 Chinese Jade

Nephrite Jade

Nephrite’s robustness is due to the fact it contains tremolite. It also can be divided into several sub-classifications according to color: white, grey, green, topaz, and black jade.

 Chinese Jade

In China, the most reputable jade producing area is Hetian in Xinjiang Province. Hetian jade is so hard that it can scratch glass. It has often been found in very huge pieces.

 Chinese Jade

Serpentine jade, or Xiu yu in Chinese, is mainly from Xiuyan County in Liaoning Province. Made of many different ingredients, it takes on various appearances: white, yellow, light yellow, pink, green, dark green, light green and so on. This type is usually coloured in various shades of green. Usually serpentine jade is semi-transparent or even opaque like wax.

 Chinese Jade

Lantian jade is produced in Lantian County, north of Xian in Shaanxi Province. It was also among the most charming ancient jades, for its rigidity made it easier to be carved into decorations and jewelry by our ancestors. The hue is uneven in colors of yellow or light green.

 Chinese Jade

Nanyang County in Henan Province is famous for its abundant Nanyang jade. The ore district is located on an isolated 200 meter high hill, called Dushan Hill (thus its other name of ‘Dushan jade’). It is distinctive for its whimsicality. Among the Nanyang jade artworks, you will find rare purple, blue and red ones.

How to Appreciate and Maintain Jade

Experts believe that, although more expensive, diamonds and gold cannot be compared with jade – it is animated with a soul. They often buy to collect their favorite jade artworks, while people with little knowledge may buy coarse works.

To obtain a real jade article, you should take pains to learn and appreciate it. The criteria lie in the brightness of color and luster, compactness of inner structure, and the delicacy of the craftwork. For example, nephrite creates an oily luster and jadeite creates a vitreous luster. Tiny cracks can lower its value; on real one, air bubbles cannot be seen; the more lenitive the higher quality of jade, and so on.

Having purchased a jade article is just half the process of collecting. It is like a child that needs constant care. Enthusiasts need to work more to maintain this artwork, or blemishes may appear.

First, avoid bumping into hard surfaces as it is delicate. Although sometimes a crack cannot be seen by the naked eye, the interior structure may have been damaged. As time goes on, it will appear and reduce the value of the piece.

Second, protect it from dust or greasy dirt. If tainted, they must be scrubbed with a soft brush and light suds and washed with clean water.

Third, when left unused it is best to store it in a case or box to protect it from being bumped.

Fourth, it should be kept away from perfume, perspiration or chemicals. Its brightness risks corrosion, especially emerald and other high quality jade, so it is better to clean it with a soft cloth after wearing it.

Fifth, do not expose it to sunlight for a long time, or it may expand and the quality will change slightly.

Finally, jade has certain water content so keep it in an area of humidity to protect it from over-drying.

by Xiao Xiao xiaoxiao@interactchina.com    

About Interact China

—————————————————————————————————————————–
“A Social Enterprise in E-commerce Promoting Oriental Aesthetic Worldwide”

Aileen & Norman co-founded Interact China in 2004 with specialization in fine Oriental Aesthetic products handmade by ethnic minorities & Han Chinese. Having direct partnerships with artisans, designers, craft masters and tailors, along with 10 years solid experience in e-commerce via InteractChina.com, we position well to bridge talented artisans in the East with the rest of the world, and bring you direct finely selected products that are of good quality and aesthetic taste.

So far we carry 2000+ goods covering Ladies Fashion, Tailor Shop, Home Furnishings, Babies & Kids, Painting Arts, Textile Arts, Carving Arts, Tribal Jewelry Art, Wall Masks and Musical Instruments. Our team speak English, French, German, Spanish and Italian, and serve customers worldwide with passion and hearts.
—————————————————————————————————————————–

P.S. We Need People with Similar Passion to Join Our Blogging Team!
If you have passion to write about Oriental Aesthetic in Fashion, Home Decor, Art & Crafts, Culture, Music, Books, and Charity, please contact us at bloggers@interactchina.com, we would love to hear from you!