Decorating for Chinese New Year

Our family has so much fun decorating for Lunar New Year.  Once the Christmas decorations come down, the Spring Festival decorations go up.  A little more is added each year to our growing collection, and I love seeing the house transform into a festive Chinese New Year celebration.  We started out small but now have a really fun stash.  Decorating this year was doubly as fun because we moved into our sweet country house about a month ago – so we’ve been finding new homes for all of our precious China treasures.  We do things a little differently each year, but here is a glimpse of the decoration festivities in our home for 2016.  You’ll find tips for the decor at the bottom of the post.

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LUNAR NEW YEAR DECORATING TIPS:

  1. I bought as many decorations and home decor items as I could in China.  They’re authentic and reasonably priced.  I bought way more than I thought I’d use, and I’ve used all of them.  We keep a few decorations up all year for fun!
  2. China Sprout is my favorite online source for authentic Chinese decorations.  My wall hangings, lanterns, and couplets are from there.  The site is a tremendous resource for adoptive families.
  3. If you don’t mind the wait for international shipping, ordering from Ann at Red Thread China is a nice option for some traditional decor.
  4. Oriental Trading has fun Chinese New Year decorations, as well as cheap and simple crafts.
  5. Party City has a small collection of decorations.
  6. Amazon is a quick source for hóng bāo and traditional coins.  They also have some nice-looking decorations if you search.
  7. Cafe Press may have some worthwhile decor, but I usually like that site better for Christmas ornaments.
  8. The tassel garlands hanging on my stairs were a custom order from Flair Exchange with red, yellow, gold, off white, and copper metallic mylar colors.  I had originally purchased it for our fireplace mantle, but we don’t have one at the new house.  So I cut it in half for the stairwell.  If you’re crafty, you may also consider creating a bunting banner with red, gold, and Chinese-inspired fabrics.
  9. Jiayin Designs is my source for the sweet zodiac stuffed animals on top of my bookcase, although I still need to add a monkey for 2016.
  10. The grocery store always has oranges – put them in a glass bowl for a pretty, super simple, and budget-friendly centerpiece.  If you can find oranges with leaves, your centerpiece will be super festive!
  11. Make a wreath with some hóng bāo (laminated to last longer), red and gold ribbon, red berry garland, and Chinese-themed garland.
  12. Make a good luck tree centerpiece with fallen sticks from your yard or local park.  Use plum or cherry blossom branches for an even cooler look.  Mine are wired and wound around the branches.  Hole punch hóng bāo to string it, and add some Chinese coins for a fun touch.  I used red raffia for stringing, but any kind of ribbon or string will work.  This is another very budget-friendly decoration.
  13. Combine American and Chinese culture by decorating a “Fu Tree,” as we like to call it in our house – a traditional Christmas tree filled with Chinese-themed ornaments.  Another post will cover ideas for ornaments.
  14. Use your imagination and have fun as you add a little each year.  Consider crafting your decorations to save on cost – lanterns are particularly easy to create.  There are many ideas on Pinterest also.  Possibilities are endless to transform your home for a festive Lunar New Year celebration!

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