Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Ribbons & Bows & Babies

Ribbons and bows sometimes have a way of speaking with their silence. So is the case in Italy where a ribbon, bow, or sash on a main entry door quietly announces to the local community an event of significance has occurred within.

A sighting of a pink or blue ribbon shouts out the arrival of a new life into the household. It is a "fiocco nascita," or a ribbon of birth. Pink for girls expresses their femininity. Blue for boys signifies their heavenly importance and hence the blue of the sky.

In the past, the hanging the ribbon on the door was a superstition of protection for the baby, especially boys since they were of more importance. Nowadays, it's a way to celebrate and announce to the world the joy of a new arrival.

The fiocco nascita can be accompanied with the child's name and is sometimes elaborately decorated with a sewn and embroidered decoration like a heart, angel, or stuffed animal. They can be handmade by the mother, relative, or friend - or purchased at a store.

Whatever way it's done, fiocchi nascita are a fun way of shouting out to the world "Hey, we've got a new kid at our house!"

We've just recently celebrated the arrival of our new grandson, Rhys Michael! Welcome to the world, sweetheart! Hmmm...I wonder if grandparaents can hang one on their door too! 

- Nina Spitzer

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