Hinamatsuri, or Girl’s Day, is celebrated in Japan every 3rd of March. Starting in February, collections of elaborately dressed dolls—representing the Emperor, Empress, and their court—are arranged on tiered, red-carpeted platforms. Special versions of popular foods are consumed, including sushi, sake, and arare crackers. Also popular is a clear, salty broth made with whole clam shells. The shells symbolize a girl’s finding her perfect mate—for while the two sides from one clamshell will fit together perfectly, no two other shells will.
In ancient Japan, it was believed that dolls could harbor evil spirits. Thus, dolls would be set on boats and sent downstream—taking troubles with them. The festival of Hinamatsuri has been celebrated in Japan for a thousand years.
In the Nineteenth Century, as Westerners began to travel to and learn about Japan, many Europeans developed a deep fascination with “The Orient.” French painter James Tissot, who often painted Oriental themes, was known to have one of the largest European collections of Japanese art, including dolls.
And while the festival culminates on 3 March, it is imperative one take-down the displays before 4 March, lest one’s daughter be consigned to a late marriage!
The picture above shows one example from our large collection of photo frames. Please come into the shop to see it—and the many more we have in-stock.