Chinese New Year decorations are just as important as other traditions like food and celebrations. Just as your personal home decorations are an expression of you, feel free to personalize your decorations for Chinese New Year. Below is a checklist to help you include the right pieces along with explainations for each item.
Chinese New Year Decorations Checklist
- Clean home
- Chūn lián (red banners)
- Live plants
- Fresh flowers
- Oranges (and other traditional Chinese New Year food)
- Gift envelopes (red and gold, of course)
- Chinese lanterns
Clean Your Home First
Start by cleaning your home from top to bottom for Chinese New Year, but be sure to finish before New Year’s Eve. It’s said that cleaning on New Year’s Day will sweep away good fortune for the coming year.
Hang Chūn Lián
Now that your house is clean, it’s time to hang chun lian. First take down old Duilian (red banners displaying a form of poetry call couplets). Chūn lián is a special form of Duilian used only for Chinese New Year. The poems are written in gold or black characters on long red banners hung on the sides main entry doorway of the home. While the poetry is traditionally written on themes of renewal and hope for the coming year, the colors hold meaning as well. The Chinese word for red (hóng) sounds like the word “prosperous,” and the color gold symbolizes wealth.
Place one on each side of your door fame and another fixed horizontally across the top. You can find smaller diamond-shape chunlian to hang on bedroom doors or mirrors.
Want to make your own Chinese New Year Paper Cuttings?
Chinese New Year Symbols of Wealth and Growth
Next set out live plants and a vase of fresh flowers to symbolize new growth and wealth. Oranges and tangerines should be displayed on trays. Then grab a round tray, that’ll be your candy tray.
Place several red envelopes in in the center then around them arrange eight kinds of dried sweet fruits. These Red Envelopes, Hongbao, are the traditional way grandparents and parents give gifts of money to their children. Place the money inside your envelopes by Chinese New Year’s Eve day so they will be ready for New Year’s Day.
Display Chinese Lanterns
On day 14 of Chinese New Year, it’s time to get ready for Lantern Festival. It’s celebrated on the 15th day of the first month of the Chinese calendar. Celebrations vary around Asia, but it’s common to hang lanterns in the home or even have a lantern parade.
You can buy lanterns or it’s fun to make your own. Making lanterns is a great craft for kids. Here’s How to Make Chinese Lanterns with your kids.
The Lantern Festival symbolizes the end of the two week holiday season. You can finally relax and enjoy the celebrations as the holiday celebrations draw to a close.
Add Your Own Decorations
As with many other holidays and traditions, decorations for Chinese New Year are a personal expression. What would you add to this list?
Learn more about Chinese New Year
- Chinese New Year 2016 Guide
- Chinese New Year Animals: A Complete Guide
- Chinese New Year Traditions and Origin Story
- 8 Traditional Chinese New Year Foods
- 18 Facts About Chinese New Year to Impress Your Friends