Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Button Wednesday : Frogs

It is Wednesday again, so it's BUTTON DAY on my blog !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This week we talk about frog buttons. In ancient China frog buttons, called Huaniu, were used to fasten clothing while also providing decorative flair. These buttons became popular because they were easy to produce and to customize. Frog buttons are made up of intricately knotted string which also makes them very durable. Almost all cheongsam dresses have frogs. The knotted head is regarded as male and the part with the eye as female. Huaniu represent the "soul" of the cheongsam. They are the product of thousands of years of traditional knotting craft and the designs and compositions vary from plain to intricate. Traditional designs include floral, animal and insect motives, and symbols, such as pomegranates and the Chinese character 'shou', signifying fertility and longevity. Most huaniu on cheongsam are designed to match the pattern of the fabric and the color of the braided trim on the collar cuff and hem.


(pictures from Asia, tabletpc2you, and periWing)

They became very popular on modern clothing too, also in the West. Lots of jackets get an extra decorative element by adding these froggies !

(pictures from Shanghai Tang and PatternReview)

Here a selection of some simple and some intricate frog buttons:
(pictures from The Noni Blog)
The Powerhouse Museum gives a good description of Cheongsam and how to make your own frog buttons.
And then finally the sixtyfourthousand dollar question: why are they called frogs ? Answer: It's called a Frog Button, since it resembles two frogs kissing each other where the knot is......

Have you seen a lovely, beautiful, stunning, crazy button or button-related thingy, or did you make something with a button / buttons, or did you even make buttons yourself, blog about it on your blog on Wednesday, and give the link here in the comments so that everybody can enjoy it !!


Joanne said...

Another wonderful and informative post Petronella!

X by Leina Neima said...

Always enjoying reading your "button academy"!

BHB Kidstyle said...

Such beautiful outfits and amazing buttons!

OnePerfectDay said...

Great post!

ROROISM said...