Needlecraft Makes a True Lady
With a long history, the needlecraft, or 女红 (nvgong) in Chinese, a synonym of 女工(nvgong) an 女功 (nvgong), covers various skills such as braiding, weaving, clasping, sewing, embroidering, scissoring, tweaking, pasting etc. For thousands of years, girls and married women have thoroughly displayed their dexterity and charm by doing the needlecraft at home.
For a small family, the needlecraft can serve as a close "pedigree"; in the long historical process, it silhouettes the elegance of women in various periods from the matriarchal society when women were the "sole supporter" of a family to the society later on when they share the same equality with men. The earliest needlecraft can be dated back to 18,000 years ago when the mothers of the upper cave clan started to use needles.
As industrialization provides us with standardized ready-to-wear clothes, it has also alienated us from the fun of sewing clothes by ourselves; as we become more and more proficient in clicking the computer keyboard, we have left the hand-sewing skill out of practice; as money can get us exquisitely-packaged gifts so easily, we can hardly experience the touching moment brought by the silent care from our beloved ones.
Even if we are no longer young as time goes by, the needlecraft with the colorful lines and colored cloth will always leave us the patterns and temperature of life.
♦ What do you know about Chinese needlecraft?