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Global Perspectives

Arts and entertainment: Make-up Flower

December 11, 2019

Introduction: As writing instructors in UWRF’s English Language Transition (ELT) Program one of our missions is to involve English learning students in campus activities while strengthening their knowledge of English. We could think of no better way to do this than to have them publish an article in the Student Voice. What you are about to read is the final product of several sessions of brainstorming and writing followed by consultations with native speakers including some from the TESOL program and the Student Voice. — Kiki Augustin (ESL 211 Intermediate Writing) and Alex Hatheway (MODL 310 Advanced Composition)

Confucius is one of the great historical figures in China, but what I want to introduce today is not Confucius’ thoughts and life, but the old clothes of Confucius’ mansion.

There are more than 8,000 pieces of clothing handed down by Confucius in Ming and Qing dynasties, including damask, silk, satin, yarn and other fabrics. Among these the Ming dynasty dress is the most precious and this is the most intact series of Ming Dynasty clothes in China today.

Ming Dynasty is the most prosperous stage of the development of traditional costume of Han nationality. I will introduce it from the special manufacturing process. The most famous process used in these clothes is “make-up flower” process. “Make-up flower” fabric always uses many different colors. These colors changed very flexibly. In the weaving method, colorful pile weft tubes with different colors are used to make local plate makeup colors for the patterns on the fabric, with very free color matching without any restrictions.

The main pattern is usually expressed in two or three kinds of colors, and decorative patterns can be as many as 12 or even 20 or 30 colors. Although the color of “make-up flower” is very complex, all of them are unified and harmonious, so that the texture of the fabric can get a vivid and beautiful artistic effect. “Make-up flower” is a treasure in the history of Chinese textile art. I hope it can be loved by the whole world.