Chinese New Year

Celebrated starting January 31, 2014

Facts

  • Each year, the Chinese New Year celebration falls on the date of the first new moon on the Chinese lunar calendar, which can be in late January or early to mid-February.
  • The 12-year cycle in the Chinese calendar recognizes each of a dozen animals in the Chinese zodiac – rat, ox, tiger, hare, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig. 2014 is the Year of the Horse.
  • Chinese New Year is the longest, most celebrated event in Chinese communities around the world.
  • Hallmark introduced Chinese New Year cards in 1999.

2014 Product Features

  • Hallmark offers 20 Chinese New Year card designs in the United States, including cards appropriate for family and friends. Prices range from $2.99 to $4.99.
  • The cards feature many culturally relevant designs, including traditional Chinese symbols and bright, bold colors. Card sentiments are written in Chinese and include English translations on the back of the card. Two card designs feature special “Year of the Horse” designs.
  • Some designs are specifically for the Chinese tradition of Lai See – red envelopes used to distribute “lucky money” to family and loved ones. Chinese tradition says giving these money packets brings luck to both giver and receiver.
  • The color red on cards symbolizes the celebration, and gold appears as a tribute to the brilliance of Chinese culture. Peach blossoms and the narcissus and chrysanthemum all have symbolic value for a New Year of prosperity, good health and happiness.
  • Hallmark.com offers Chinese New Year card designs that can be customized with photos and personal messages. Hallmark will address, stamp and mail cards ordered from Hallmark.com.
  • HallmarkEcards.com also offers Chinese New Year ecards, available with a subscription.

Holiday History

Legends abound about the origins of the ancient Chinese New Year holiday. One well-known story says the man-eating dragon Nian (also the word for “year”) terrorized the country until a wise man convinced the dragon to eat other beasts. The wise man then advised the people to ward off the monster by making loud noises and hanging red decorations on windows and doors. The dragon was thought to be scared of the color red.

Today, fireworks displays on the eve of the new year often begin the 15-day Chinese New Year festivities. The Lantern Festival marks the end of the New Year celebrations on the 15th day.

In Stores

Available at Hallmark Gold Crown® stores nationwide. Use the store locator on Hallmark.com to find the nearest Hallmark Gold Crown store.

 

Fun Fact

From the mid-1930s through the 1950s, J.C. Hall approved every single Hallmark card, giving his official thumbs up by writing "OK JC" on the back.