12 Traditions and Facts about Chinese New Year.... The year of the Horse
If, like a lot of us you don’t know too much about this celebration, fear not, we are counting down the days until this year’s festivities by bringing you a new fact or tradition every day.
You shouldn't have your hair cut too close to the beginning of Chinese New Year otherwise you'll sever your good luck!
Eight is considered to be a lucky number and is significant because the Chinese word for eight sounds like fortune.
Red envelopes with money are given to ward off evil spirits.
Don't forget to buy a brand new outfit for New Year celebrations to symbolise a new beginning and having more than enough things to use and wear.
Oranges and tangerines are passed out freely during Chinese New Year as the Chinese words for orange and tangerine sound like luck and wealth!
Avoid cutting noodles before serving to ensure long life and longevity.
The Chinese believe that sweeping the floor on New Year's Day means sweeping all of your good luck out the front door.
It's the Year of the Horse. If you were born in 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002 or 2014 it's your year and the Chinese zodiac says that you are hard-working, admirable and ambitious.
Horse people are compatible with people born in the years of Tigers, Dogs and Sheep.
Black moss fungi is often eaten during Chinese New Year, perhaps because 'fat choy' is part of the Chinese holiday greeting 'kung hei fat choy' which translates in English as a wish for good luck or good fortune.
On New Year's Eve it is customary to serve a fish at the end of the evening meal, symbolizing a wish for abundance in the coming year. The fish is usually served whole, with head and tail attached, symbolizing a good beginning and end for the coming year.
Various Chinese New Year symbols express different meanings. For example, an image of a fish symbolizes “having more than one need every year”, a firecracker symbolizes “good luck in the coming year” and the festival lanterns symbolizes “pursuing the bright and the beautiful”.
The sweetness of sticky rice cakes represents a rich, sweet life and the round shape signifies family reunion.