Insole Embroidery: Li Ruo Fen 李若芬
General Insole Designs

All designs on embroidered insoles come from local Chinese culture and everyday life. These graphic patterns and folkloric designs, hand sewn with needle and thread, communicate deep emotions of yearning for a better life. Each design has a specific meaning. For example, a butterfly and flower express firmness in love and flowers alone represent the good fortune that comes with blooming. These are not just insoles used to cushion one’s feet; today, they are also a Chinese folk art that has value to collectors.

Combination patterns:

  • The combination of dragon and phoenix is the symbol of the highest mascot.

As a national flower of China, the peony implies wealth and nobility.

  • The combination of a peony and a cock is auspicious.

  • The combination of the fish pattern and Chinese Characters “平安” “步步高升”suggests superabundance and peace that is promoted with each step.

  • The combination of pattern “bat” and “osmanthus” means wealth and honor for their similar pronunciation.

  • The combination of pine and crane implies good wishes for a long life.

Chinese characters on embroidered insoles:

.“平安”(safety)—made for a person who is far away from home to wish them freedom from disease and disaster
.“福” (blessing )—made to wish someone good fortune
.“正”(Justice)—made to help someone conquer evil and devil
.“回”(go home)—made for lovers and young girls to be safe on their way home

Flowers and Fruits

.Fruits such as the pomegranate with lots of seeds inside, are always seen as symbols of a prosperous family with a wish for many sons and grandsons
.The peach stands for longevity

.The plum flower has the same pronunciation as the word for eyebrows, and implies equal status of couples in a family and a harmonious relationship between wife and husband.
.The lotus is a holy flower in both Buddhism and Taoism and it symbolizes both that which is good and beautiful.
.Because the lotus has twisted roots and branches with abundant foliage, it always symbolizes a blessed family with a lot of descendants.
.In Chinese folklore, a double lotus suggests steadfastness and pure love. A lotus with a couple of mandarin ducks usually stands for an affectionate couple.

Others:

“Dark eight immortals” refers to the eight immortals’ kinds of musical instruments, with its representatives of eight immortals, implying auspiciousness and safety.
In summary, the variety of patterns and designs all express good wish for pursuing a happy, healthy and prosperous life.