Monday, January 21, 2008

5 Things We bought in Guang Zhou

1) More funny children's bags! These were my favorite find of the day. Each one is about 8 inches tall and all the little scales are quilted to give extra texture and dimension. Each one has another smaller fish inside and when you pull the drawstrings closed they suddenly become catfish with long whiskers! Now hows that for innovative design?

2) These kitten pouches were too sweet to pass up. I think they are a Japanese design and not a Chinese one, but I love how they are rolling around belly up. Our little cat Elvis used to do that and it made me laugh every time. These have a really wonderful feel, like they are made with obi silk and have lots of nice textural details too, like the pom poms on their collars, little padded feet and funny spots of different fabrics.

3) I bought these coin purses because my dear friend Jessica is a big owl fan and I like to surprise her. (Though I suppose I've just ruined that!)

4) No trip to Guang Zhou would be complete without a little visit to Ikea where I picked up this funky rug in a vain attempt to warm up our icy apartment. Its not really that cold here, maybe 55 degrees, but no central heat and marble floors add up to a very chilly apartment. I'm hoping the rugs will help a little. This one is so colorful it makes it feel warmer even if it actually isn't. So many things are just perception, aren't they?

5) These wonderful paper cut outs have a long tradition in China. I'm sure once upon a time they were made by hand, but nowadays they are cut from tissue paper with big razor sharp dyes. At Chinese New Year the house is filled with red (and gold!) decorations like these to welcome wealth and good fortune in the new year. 2oo8 is the year of the mouse so there are lots of golden mice appearing in all the shops. The pig is on heavy discount as his year draws to a close (and another twelve years will pass before he is feted again). Red, red, red is the theme and I've also seen lots of charming stuffed strawberries and chili peppers, strings of firecrackers and giant intricate satin knots with thick tassels. It is really quite striking when they are all grouped together. You can't help but get caught up in the celebratory mood of it all. It seems like a time to make everything a little bit prettier. I've already put ours up on the windows even though its a bit early. (Being a foreigner means I can ignore little conventions like that) I just love how they seem to float there like some fantastic hybrid of doily, silhouette and good luck charm.

1 comment:

All Things Bright and Beautiful... said...

Loving these purchases and pics from Guangzhou!! Isn't it the fabest place for shopping!!

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