Saturday, January 25, 2014

Chinese New Year: Year of the Horse

Although I prefer to show my Chinese New Year (CNY) entries on the day they are celebrated, I see so many people I visit have jumped the gun and posted their Year of the Horse prior to January 31st.  And since Blogger is actually allowing me to load photos, at least for the time being, I thought I would schedule this post.

This is the front of this year's CNY tip-in.

Normally, I would add my name and blog address on the back, but it looked better on the front, because you can barely see the horse, which, I'm sure many of you suspected knew I'd use: a rocking horse.

 I found this information on the internet as well as this one along with this one about a green wooden horse, although this one contradicts the dates of some other sites.  It seems one source I can no longer find states I am wrong because 2014 actually is Year 4712, while another source claims 2014 really IS Year 4711.

A few sites that you might enjoy are here, which tells a bit of the history of the horse and other animals associated with CNY, and here, where you learn that the horse is a herbivore, and one should eat lots of salads, veggies, and breads during the festival.  


I found it all fascinating, and was glad I created a "green horse," although I resisted adding the real wooden rocking horse I drew around in order to make this seem semi-realistic.  Of note is the fact that I tried to position the front and back so the viewer believed the horse was coming through the page, although it's hard to tell because of the scan.

And since I am celebrating a bit early this year, I thought you might like to see a few of the pieces I've created in the past.
Let's begin our look back all the way to 2005 and 2007, both of which are included in this Chinese New Year Swap book I assembled.

I turned these swaps into a stand-alone book that could be added to, instead of making them normal tip-ins in a bound book.   For the front and back of the book, I applied gesso with a brush, but added some butterscotch color wash to the gesso before I spread it around.

When the gesso was dry, I collaged papers and cancelled postage stamps on the outside covers.  I created the letters on my computer, printed them, then colored them with red watercolor to which I added silver mica powder.

I used a Chinese restaurant place mat to decorate the inside. I'm sure we've all seen these place mats if we ever visited Chinese restaurants.  Not sure you can tell, but I ran a gold leafing pen around the outside to give the pages a finished look.

From this angle, you can see there was room to add more Chinese New Year tip-ins in years to come.  I added fibers and beads around the rings, which open for easy insertions of other tip-ins.

This box was originally purchased by my shop-aholic friend Kathy, who thought we could keep our completed Asian books in them.  However, when my book was finished, it was too large to fit in the box.

I was thrilled Kathy had bought us these boxes, because this book of swaps fits perfectly inside this container. What a pleasant surprise it will be when someone opens it to find all the wonderful swap tip-in pages bound and placed in this very appropriate container.

Apparently, I missed 2008 and 2009, although I was sure I created both a Year of the Dragon and a Year of the Cock.

Guess it's time to skip ahead to 2010:

(Please click to enlarge)


Year of the Tiger was celebrated on February 14, 2010.


These are the tags I added to the tip-ins.

I failed to make a tip-in for 2013, which was Year of the Snake.  Instead, I made a wall hanging.

I hope you enjoyed a look back at previous Chinese New Year tip-ins, along with my present offering for the Year of the Horse.  Happy Chinese New Year all you herbivores!

13 thoughtful remarks:

Halle said...

Very nicely done...love that you used a rocking horse...makes it so YOU! That little suitcase is adorable and just perfect for that book!

Craftymoose Crafts said...

So perfect and you to use a rocking horse! I like how you placed him among the fans. I also enjoyed the look back--such a smart idea to keep your tip-ins in an expandable book--and the asian themed box is perfect, too! Have a happy weekend.

Krisha said...

LOVE the tip-in box and storage box.
Very interesting about the green horse.

Beverley Baird said...

I love Chinese New Year as well - always celebrated each year at school with my students. Great artwork!

Dandelion and Daisy said...

Love the use of color! Great idea to create a book for saving your pages and, now, you have special storage as well. The year of the horse, wooden horse no less, could not be any more perfect for you. Stay warm!

Arnoldo L. Romero, MLA said...

I can tell you had a blast with this theme. The little suitcase is adorable and the tags are very unique. Blessings!

Vicki Miller said...

I never cease to be amazed at all the pages and books you make. I think I could spend days, just looking through them all!

Eliza said...

I like learning new things like this, I didn't know about the green horse and the vegis bits. I am pleased to see you added your rocking horse how apt. Great layouts and awesome posts.

Hugs Eliza

Corrine at sparkledaysstudio.com said...

Didn't know about the green horse. Love the tags....xox

Rita said...

I think I was born in a year of the rabbit if I recall from my chinese restaurant days. Year of the Horse. I don't know much about any of these traditions, but I do like your subtle green horse. :)

Dianne said...

Terrific idea to make the book to include more than one year...the red and gold traditional colors are spirit-lifting in winter. Truly lovely box to keep it all in too...

Dianne said...

...and, I've been 'craving' green...maybe because of all the snow! love your interpretation of the year of the wooden horse; a rocking horse of course!

Jo Murray said...

Oh my, what wonderful projects! As a lover of all things Asian...I could probably kill for your book.