The significance of the colors red & gold in Chinese culture

The color of Red in chinese culture usually means good luck. So like the red packet which is given every Chinese New Year, is just a symbol of good luck in the coming Year. So it is not wise for you to wear red color shirts when you attend a funeral. Golden or yellow color is traditionally the color used in imperial service. The golden color symbolizes wealth and also happiness.

Red is also a color in Chinese weddings, because in wedding they tend to be happy and by wearing red things, will help the couple who are getting married chasing out the bad luck on the day they're getting married. Red in here means good luck, happiness, joy, and for the couple, this red color is regarded an energy as red symbolized the Fire element in Chinese metaphysics.

In Chinese New Year, they're a custom that the eldest one gives red envelope to the young one, which means on this happy day, they're welcoming the New Year, and give blessing to the young one. Reds, Oranges and Yellows are warm colors that create warm and excitement. As you can see also, in Chinese New Year, they like to give two oranges for every visitor to give a warm welcome. This Red envelope is also a symbol of prosperity in the house.

The color of Red in chinese culture usually means good luck. So like the red packet which is given every Chinese New Year, is just a symbol of good luck in the coming Year. So it is not wise for you to wear red color shirts when you attend a funeral. The golden color symbolize wealth and also happiness.

In Chinese Metaphysics, Red symbolized the Fire element (shiny element which can chase out all evil). Golden color or sometimes it can resemble a Yellow color, symbolized the Earth element which is the storage money element (wealth) in Four Pillars of Destiny.

Hery Yansen is a Chinese Metaphysics practitioner and owner of Authentic Feng Shui Asia website. His website http://www.authenticfengshui.asia provides an informative content on different kinds of Chinese metaphysics for those who are keen learner on Chinese metaphysics subjects.

Comments 39 comments

livelonger profile image

livelonger 8 years ago from San Francisco

Thank you for the explanation.


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Hery Yansen 8 years ago Author

You're welcome, LiveLonger


rose tusiime 7 years ago

Wow.....iam so happy because i have a wedding in december and my colors are red and gold. iam som blessed to have chosen those colors and thank you for providing the details about the meaning.


Bo @ Chinese Knot Weddings 7 years ago

The color red is used widely in Chinese culture, for all happy moments including the wedding, the birthday, the opening ceremony, the Spring Festival (the Chinese New Year) etc.


megha 6 years ago

what is the significance of black colour in chinese mythology?


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Hery Yansen 6 years ago Author

Hi Megha, the black color is usually used in unhappy events, that's why the Chinese never wear all black suite to attend a marriage event.


dnnich 6 years ago

I'm curious as why signage on buildings in many chinese movies have a red background is it for the same reasons to represent the fire element and good luck?


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Hery Yansen 6 years ago Author

Hi Dnnich, sorry 4 the late reply. Yes as you mention, the background of red is representing the good luck.


emily 6 years ago

i was just wondering what the chinese flag symbolises and why its so important??, because i've got a school prodject


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Hery Yansen 6 years ago Author

The flag of the People's Republic of China is a red field charged in the canton (upper left corner) with five golden stars. The design features one large star, with four smaller stars in a semicircle set off towards the fly (right side). The red represents revolution; the five stars and their relationship represent the unity of the Chinese people under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC). Sometimes, the flag is referred to as the "Five Star Red Flag" (simplified Chinese: ????; traditional Chinese: ????; pinyin: w? x?ng hóng qí).(I just quoted from Wikipedia so it's easy for you to understand.)


Luke 6 years ago

And what about furniture and interior design? Is there any particular color that Chinese people do or don't like, or just prefer?


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Hery Yansen 6 years ago Author

For furniture and interior design, it depends on the person itself preference. For exterior color like wall color, usually the Chinese like to use the color according to the favorable color that they need. Like for example, if the person is a weak fire, then he prefer more color of green or red (green represent wood and red represent fire). I hope this answer to your question through email.


katie 5 years ago

well why are the stars so important


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Hery Yansen 5 years ago Author

Hi Katie, what kind of stars that you are referring to?


Amari Azuna 5 years ago

Why don't you talk more about the yellow/gold?


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Hery Yansen 5 years ago Author

Hi Amari,

I think my explanation is quite enough on this subject.


tom 5 years ago

you rock


Catherine Li 5 years ago

it is true.Thanks!i am chinese are u?


Hery Yansen profile image

Hery Yansen 5 years ago Author

Thank you for your comment, Catherine Li.

I have a Chinese trait also.


unknown 4 years ago

Brilliant but you did to much things on the colour red


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Hery Yansen 4 years ago Author

Color red = happiness, joy


Vickie Nau 4 years ago

What two colors are traditionally NOT to be worn during the Chinese New Year?


shelby 4 years ago

i need help 4 a school project. do you have any more info on the color gold?


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Hery Yansen 4 years ago Author

Black is the most not recommended color for Chinese New Year.


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Hery Yansen 4 years ago Author

What kind of information you needed for your school project, Shelby?


Marisa 4 years ago

I just want to know if we can place red object or decoration in wealth area of a space. Since the element for wealth area is wood.. So fire will burn the wood for the destructive cycle..


Marisa 4 years ago

In my house, the septic tank of my sister toilet is in the living room area of my house. We have just 2 meters distance between my house and her house..she was the first who build her house and our lot was adjacent to each other.. It was 21 years already and its still there.. I feel that its bad for feng shui.. I told her already to make new septic tank but still she didn't make action.. What will i do.. And also, our septic tank of our toilet is in the kitchen area because i made extention of my house at the back side..please help me what to do.. We are always financially drain..


Hery Yansen profile image

Hery Yansen 4 years ago Author

Dear Marisa,

If the area is wood, it will surely drain the power of the wood if you put red color decoration. The key is to balance.


Hery Yansen profile image

Hery Yansen 4 years ago Author

Dear Marisa,

Feng Shui is always about balance. There are 3 important things that you should take care, 1. Your main door 2. Your master bedroom 3. Your kitchen. If it falls in some bad star or good star at wrong location then it will cause you financially drain. If you have the map of your house and direction of your house (if you are not sure, then we still can use Google map to help), we can talk and discuss it through my mail in my website above.


WOO 4 years ago

can you were red at a chinese memorial


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Hery Yansen 4 years ago Author

No, it is not suitable to wear red at that moment. Red represent happiness not sadness in obituaries.


david 4 years ago

AMAZING THANK YOU


Nidhi 3 years ago

Thanks! It helped a lot!


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Hery Yansen 3 years ago Author

You're welcome, Nidhi.


Jo 3 years ago

What about blue?


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Hery Yansen 3 years ago Author

Blue we rarely used in Chinese traditional, Jo.


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Stulsequate 15 months ago

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