Steeped in culture, historical landmarks, literature and romance, China is pinned as my main source of inspiration this month.
Golden dragons. The Great Wall. Stones of jade. Terracotta soldiers. Mandarin collars. The colour red. These are several things that come to mind when I think of China. As all my grandparents were born and raised in the mainland, this old country is a part of my history, and a part of me – something that I will always hold dear to my heart.
A few years ago, I stayed and worked in Shandong province for three months during the winter, and I was mesmerised by the people, the architecture, and surprised by how at-home I felt with it all. In my free time, I visited other states like Tianjin, Beijing, Dalian and Qingdao, and found that each had a personality of its own – both charming and unique. I’ve also always been intrigued by the beauty rituals practiced by maidens in the days of yore.
Rice flour was used to create a fair complexion, and women started using rouge only in the Han dynasty. Red rouge was applied to their lips in different shapes, like hearts and circles. In the Tang dynasty, women started carrying around little makeup boxes that contained a mirror, rouge and even a lipstick. And upon their heads, the women would balance gold bejewelled crowns with little bells dangling at the edges. It’s always fascinating to know how our ancestors perceived beauty in the past, and it’s definitely interesting to see how it has been adapted over the years.
Let the culture of bygone Chinese dynasties fuel and inspire your style this month! Here’s how:
Credits: Imaxtree, Shutterstock, Free HD Wallpapers