I started studying Chinese a little more than a year ago. One of my favorite parts to learn is the characters. A lot of folks will start with just learning the pinyin but the characters fascinate me. It gives me a serious thrill when I can identify one on a sign – so far it’s never more than one but hey you gotta start somewhere!
I like the history of how the characters formed and how you can see how the character for mouth looks like an open mouth 口 or how the character for person looks like a person walking 人. Or even the crazy complicated ones that don’t look like what they are, they’re just beautiful to look at, like 发现 🙂 They’re like little bits of art to me.
One of my favorite characters has become the character for Jí 吉. I originally came to Jí 吉 when I was searching for a character that I could make in murrini that meant luck and could be used as a charm that was to be a gift for people we visited in China. I wanted to be sure I didn’t mis-step even though I found the character and its definition in a reputable dictionary. I did a double check with a Chinese friend of a friend in Singapore to make sure it was an appropriate character and would be well received as a gift. They assured me it did mean luck and general well being and that it was a lovely character and any Chinese person would be happy to receive it.
So off I went with the Jí 吉. I made the murrini out of it (glass rod with a pattern inside) but it didn’t turn out quite as great as I wanted and I abandoned the idea of making the charms.
But the Jí 吉 still suck with me. I really loved it and loved the shape. After I returned from China and found out I got into the miniature show, decided maybe I could make a micro-mosaic pendant for myself to wear to the show. I decided on Jí 吉 !
Then, the news came that a good friend of mine who is Chinese was scheduled to have a very very serious surgery that will require months of recovery where she won’t be too mobile. I wanted to do something for her, so decided to make her a little good luck micro-mosaic charm of Jí 吉 that she could keep nearby.
Both turned out great. My friend was really thrilled with her charm and hopefully it will bring her good luck during the recovery. I happily wore the necklace to the opening of the miniatures show and think it will become one of my favorite pieces of jewelry to wear for quite some time.
Here’s the final results of both the pendant and the smaller charm.