The art of giving gifts in Japan is more sophisticated than anywhere else in the world: it’s not only the gift that matters, it is also very important how the gift is presented. For example, the monetary gifts for special occasions like weddings, child births, funerals and anniversaries are always placed in decorated envelopes, produced especially for these occasions.
The envelopes are tied with Mizuhiki cord, made of twisted washi (Japanese paper) stiffened with glue. The cord is sometimes painted, but the most stylish ones are covered by brightly colored silk. Of course, like any other Japanese custom, the node has a specific meaning, it connects the hearths of the people exchanging the gifts and even more than this, the shape of the node sends a supplementary message: for example, the node on the right of this photo, shaped like a crane, is also a wish for long life, because the crane signifies longevity…
Yesterday’s Japan Photo: