Jining slips on tiger-head shoes to welcome Chinese New Year

(chinadaily.com.cn)| Updated : 2022-01-21

Print Print


Tiger-head shoes, which get their name from the toe cap that resembles the head of a big cat, are being made and sold in batches to welcome the Year of the Tiger in Jining, East China's Shandong province.

Stemming from traditional Chinese culture, people believe shoes with tiger patterns can help ward off evil spirits and make children become as robust as tigers.

Making tiger-head shoes is time-consuming work that consists of more than 30 steps that includes exquisite embroidery and needlework.

In general, tiger-head shoes contain bright colors and intricate patterns, and symbolize good wishes, but there are also tiny differences between each pair of tiger-head shoes, endowing them with distinctive meanings.

For example, a pair of tiger-head shoes with a pattern of scallions embroidered on the treads expresses the wish that the child wearing the shoes will be smart because the terms "smart" and "scallion" are homophonic in Chinese.