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Keep the Celebrations Alive With These 7 Interesting Spring Festival Traditions and a Chinese Neon Sign

The Spring Festival, popularly known as the Chinese New Year, is the time of the year synonymous with celebration and joy in China. During this time, Chinese communities all around the world celebrate the first day of the lunar calendar with fireworks, red decorations, and famous dragon dances. 

Initially celebrated only in China and some Asian countries back in the days, the festivity eventually arrived and is now being widely celebrated in Western countries, too. Countless traditions make this a special time for families and friends to get together. 

With that said, familiarize yourself with the traditions to enjoy the light and hope-filled activities that ring in the new year. Lucky for you, we've made it convenient by compiling seven Chinese New Year traditions you can participate in and how you can have fun using Chinese neon lights!

Passing on the Tale of Gods and Monsters

Like any traditional celebration, the Chinese New Year also has a fascinating origin story. It begins with the beast named Nian, who aims for humanity's destruction by killing them and destroying their livestock. 

The great news is, according to legends, there are plenty of ways to fight the beast off, like wearing red clothing, hanging red lanterns and envelopes, decorating the house with red adornments, setting a bamboo bonfire, lighting up fireworks, and putting up gods' faces on doors. 

Many of these traditions are still kept today and have continued to evolve. Knowing its origin is delightful as you can make sense of the Chinese New Year elements and decorations you see. Pass it on!

Everything Red!

Today, the practice of decorating everything in red continues, although it does not revolve around fighting Nian the beast anymore. During the Spring Festival, wearing red is a tradition to fight bad spirits and ward off bad luck. Some of the red details you'll notice are the following:

Red is the Chinese New Year's intrinsic color as it radiates energy and boldness. This color symbolizes prosperity, joy, good luck, and positivity in Chinese culture. It is best to stick to this shade to ensure that the year to come will be successful!

A Spick and Span House

Another tradition followed before the Chinese New Year comes is ensuring every home is spick and span. In Chinese, the word “dust” sounds the same as the word “old,” so the home must be dustless or spotless. It should be clean of all the literal and figurative dusty things from the past year. If you are a fan of deep cleaning, this is a tradition you'll enjoy. 

Aside from cleaning, redecorating the house, repainting, and shopping for new home appliances and furniture are some things done for spring cleaning. Nevertheless, when the new year strikes, do not sweep or clean the house. Cleaning tools must be kept away, too, as they can sweep away the good luck. 

Family First

A fascinating fact about the Chinese New Year is that the celebration is a world record for the world's largest annual migration. It is the biggest celebration of the year that workers are given a whole week of rest—the longest holiday break in the country. Hence, it has become a tradition for people to travel and visit their family and loved ones. 

Once together, the family visits their ancestors' tombs to pay respect and even give food offerings for them. It is also a must for families to have meals together on New Year's day and give out gifts, particularly the red envelope with money inside.

chinese neon lights

Every Food Served Matters

On the dinner table, everything served has meanings and is cooked to bring success and good luck for the coming year. Here are some of the traditional Chinese New Year food and the meaning behind them:

  • Dumplings: Families make and eat dumplings together as the food is shaped like Chinese silver ingots, representing wealth. 
  • Fish: The Chinese word for fish means “surplus,” so eating it will bring riches for the year to come.
  • Noodles: Long noodles equal long life, so make sure not to cut the noodles when eating as it symbolizes life cut short. 
  • Nian gao, Fa gao, Song gao: Different glutinous delicacies mean success and wealth. 

If you are visiting a couple of houses on Chinese New Year, you'll see the same dishes on the table. 

Lion and Dragon Dances

While red is the color of the Spring festival, lions and dragons are the common animal elements. You'll commonly see lion and dragon dances in the streets as they are believed to ward off bad luck and evil spirits. 

It is also normal for business establishments to hang red envelopes in their store entrances for the lion and dragon dancers to reach before they dance around the institution for good luck. This tradition goes on even after the Chinese New Year. Lion and dragon dancers visit different workplaces to welcome the work year with positivity and good luck!

A List of No-Nos

The list of must-do traditions goes on, but along with them are the practices you should also avoid during the Chinese New Year. Doing the following can mean possible misfortune in the coming year, poverty, and bad luck.

  • Wearing black or white colors
  • Washing your hair and clothes on New Year's Day
  • Cleaning the house or the presence of cleaning tools
  • Eating porridge 
  • Having money in odd number amounts
  • Broken things, scissors, and knives
  • Cursing on New Year's Day
  • Being in debt or lending money

Let the Spring Festival pass first before you do these must-nots to secure a prosperous year. 

A Light-Filled Fresh Start With a Chinese Neon Sign

Let these fascinating facts and traditions about the Chinese New Year be your inspiration for your Chinese neon light decoration! You can go as simple as mounting up a Chinese dragon neon sign, but your choices are endless, especially since customized neon signs are available. Let us pitch in some ideas to get you started:

  • A “Happy New Year” greeting in English and Chinese letters
  • The Chinese zodiac of the year in Chinese text or animal image
  • Fireworks and firecrackers
  • Lanterns or red envelopes
  • Lions or dragons

Although red is the color of the Chinese New Year, you can pick from different LED light hues to achieve the design you like! 

chinese neon light

Get Your Neon Signs At Neonize It!

The Chinese New Year celebration is marked by traditional festivities and customs. Each year, the date is different, but it is always celebrated with enthusiasm throughout the world. Check out the interesting traditions we mentioned above for relevant and fun activities you can do. As you celebrate, fill your room, home, or business establishment with light for a fresh start this Chinese New Year through neon signs from Neonize It! We have a collection of Chinese-inspired signs and other signs to light up a get-together or even a party. If you have an out-of-the-box design you want to bring to life, you can also send your designs to us! We'll bring them to life through our customized neon signs! Light up your celebrations and get your neon signs now!

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