The Lunar New Year officially begins this year on February 10. Preparations have already begun in our household with cleaning and a few gatherings with friends and family. Our New Year celebrations last about 14 days with each day having its own meaning. This year I’m having a little fun adding a few creative touches with the Cricut JoyXtra machine!

I had an idea to usher in the Year of the Dragon creating display trays, candy jars, and cards. It didn’t take long for me to set up this compact machine and get the materials to start. Searching through the incredible library of images on the Cricut Design Space was a lot of fun and a rabbit hole I happily explored!

If you don’t know, the Cricut Design Space is where all the creative elements are planned out. You can access it by a subscription that allows you more options to images to access. However, there are free images available as well to play around with. I found it was pretty straightforward to set up the Cricut JoyXtra and get moving on my projects quickly.

Search up Chinese Dragon, Year of the Dragon, and Lunar New Year, and there are many images. If you’re just starting off, go simple. This Red Dragon Bamboo Tray I made was an easy launching point with minimal “weeding” involved. (note: Cricut Permanent Vinyl is for decorative use only and not food grade.)

Feeling more advanced? There are Lunar New Year Projects including paper lanterns, cards, and lucky red envelopes “lei see” or “hong bao”  that go from easy to intricate. I love the designs that are available within the Cricut Design Space as a few have reminded me of traditional Chinese Paper Cut Art that I grew up seeing.

My friend is also working on creating Lunar New Year themed shirts/hoodies for her family as one of our traditions is wearing something new (preferrably red) on the first day of the year! Also, it’s fun to peek into the Cricut community for ideas, tips, and guidance. There are many Youtube videos out there even a few Facebook groups and great IG makers to follow (Hi! @mgs.makes ) that can be very helpful.

Cricut - Lunar New Year

Wondering what are some Lunar New Year symbols?

Dragon – Symbol of strength, power, protection, and kindness, brings good fortune to all. By the way, this is the year of the Wood Dragon

Fish – Symbol of abundance and plentiful.

Mandarin oranges – Orange is associated with gold and wealth. Mandarin oranges and tangerines are popular gifts. Look for ones that still have leaves intact.

Lantern – The Lunar New Year winds down with the Lantern Festival, celebrated with many bright lanterns glowing in the night sky.

Firecrackers – Traditionally used in celebrations are meant to scare away evil spirits.

Lion – Look for lion dances, in parades and community fairs. The lion chases away evil and is said to bring good fortune.

福 : “Fortune” or “Good Luck”

新年快樂: Happy New Year

恭喜发财 — Happiness and prosperity

What Colours To Use?

Red and Gold are the dominant colours for the Lunar New Year. But you can also incorporate brighter colours including Yellow, Pink, Green and Blue. Steer away from Black and White being dominant colours.

Looking for where you can celebrate the Lunar New Year in Toronto? Link here to our comprehensive list!