Foreign Host Learns to Embroider for the First Time and Says It’s Too Difficult

Over 200 years ago,the Mexican War of Independence broke out,so the Manila galleon trade had to stop.Another route was chosen to ship Guangzhou embroidered shawls.They no longer went through the Port of Manila.Now I’ve finally figured out the route of the Manila shawl’s Silk Road journey.The shawls set sail from Chinaand went all over the world through the transit port of Manila.

Luckily,the shawl, the Chinese fashion item, is still alive and well.How has Guangzhou embroidery been passed on in contemporary times?Next, Alex, an Explorer of Silk Road Story will go and look for the answer.


Foreign Host Learns to Embroider for the First Time and Says It’s Too Difficult

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Ruan Xian’e has participated in making the embroidery of “All Birds Paying Homage to the Phoenix”and won the Golden Cup of the China Arts and Crafts “Hundred Flowers Award”.She is a representative inheritor of Guangzhou embroidery,a provincial-level intangible cultural heritage item.Sixty years have passed since she started learning embroidery.

What surprised me is that Ms. Ruan told me that Queen Letizia of Spain had a Manila shawl altered into a dress four times.Moreover, Queen Sofia and the princesses of Spain all have worn the Manila shawl in public on several occasions.The pattern Ms. Ruan is teaching me to embroider is the same as what Queen Letizia was wearing when she attended a reception in 2017.At the time, it was widely acclaimed by the fashion world.

I know there is Sichuan embroidery, Suzhou embroidery,and Hunan embroidery.They all have different features,Among the four famous embroideries,Suzhou embroidery’s common subjects are cats and figures,Hunan embroidery tigers,and Sichuan embroidery carps.Guangzhou embroidery is characterized by double-sided embroidery.The blanks between adjacent embroidery units are kept neat and the back side is the same.Guangzhou embroidery is different from other embroideries.We design patterns after referring to Western pattern designs and oil paintings and mixing them with Chinese elements.So it’s a craft here,but the art originated over there.I can see some flowers are bright and some are dark here.That is a Western feature.

In fact, in the 18th century,various Guangdong products were very popular in European and American countries.That brings us to European fashion.In fact, not only Europe and America,but also many other places have been pursuing the fashion of Chinese silk for 2,000 years.In the 18th and 19th centuries,shawls,sunshades, and folding fans became trendy items loved by people in Europe, especially women.They were a symbol of fashion identity.In fact, it’s not hard to realize that Chinese manufacturing is gradually moving towards renaissance and a stage of intelligent manufacturing.It shows that people are using more diversified crafts today.You mean the crafts are more developed today.I think that is an important point.But, on the other hand,it is handiwork that is valuable.

Actually, I think Guangzhou embroidery or any other traditional Chinese craft is like a flower that can live in the soil of any corner of the world and take root there.I think that’s the key point of cherishing harmony in differences and diversity of civilizations.