Waist Decorations of Chinese Ethnic Minorities

By Museum of Ethnic Cultures, Minzu University of China

Museum of Ethnic Cultures, Minzu University of China

Silver GirdleOriginal Source: http://bwg.muc.edu.cn/

This is a girdle made of silver. It is an essential part of the jelwery worn by Dai woman. When a girl is born, her parents make a silver girdle like this to give to her as her dowry on the day she is married.

GirdleOriginal Source: http://bwg.muc.edu.cn/

This girdle is made of bamboo, and decorated with black and white shell beads as well as copper bells.

Cloth Girdle Embroidered with Peony DesignsOriginal Source: http://bwg.muc.edu.cn/

This is an embroidered girdle from the Tu (Monguor) people.

It is emboridered with complex motifs of plants and animals, such as fish with peonies, which symbolize happiness, wealth and longevity.

Decorative BagOriginal Source: http://bwg.muc.edu.cn/

This small, white, cross-stiched bag has an embroidered red strap decorated with round shells.

Mongolian Knife in Silver Scabbard, Decorated with Inlaid Flower DesignsOriginal Source: http://bwg.muc.edu.cn/

This knife has a wooden handle, a bone scabbard, and sliver sheet with inlaid coral and turquoise on it.

This kind of knife is both practical and decorative, despite its ornate appearance, it was used in daily life.

Knives like these would have been carried by Mongols at all times as an important part of their traditional costume.

Embroidered Light Green Satin Adornments (fan holder, card case, thumb-ring case and pouch)Original Source: http://bwg.muc.edu.cn/

These are traditional Manchu ornamental sachets popular during the Qing Dynasty (1636—1912). The sachet were small flat pouches which came in the shape of globes, strips, hearts, baskets and gourds. They are usually made from satin, silk, cloth and leather.

Sachets were initially used to hold soldiers' rations, gradually becoming decorative articles of clothing for people from all walks of life.

They were popular as gifts or given to ministers by the Emperor as rewards.

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