Today, I want to share with you, one of my favorite little treasures I picked up in China Town. He sits upon my kitchen window sill and greets me with that fat cat smiling chubbsy face every time I make coffee or wash dishes. Shops in China Town are busting at the seams with these lucky cat figurines, and I just had to take one home with me! I just had 'ta!! Have you ever just been drawn to something....and you just gotta have it?!
Most of us know this little cat as Chinese Lucky Cat. Well, I did a little research... cause that's what I do!! Inquiring minds want to know! LOL! If you are an inquiring mind, read on!
Chinese Lucky Cat is not actually Chinese in origin...it is actually Japanese. However, with it's popularity in the Chinese culture, is has been mistaken to be Chinese. It has long been believed to bring good luck and fortune to it's owner. Maneki-neko, typically a calico Japanese bobtail, are often found displayed in the entryway to Chinese restaurants and shops. Many Japanese lucky cats only have one paw raised, either left or right. Typically, a raised right paw signifies good luck and wealth, while a raised left paw, is use for luck to bring in customers. Both raised paws means protection for home and business. Many Maneki-neko figurines have battery or solar powered waving arms which, to me, are quite adorable!
The figurines are usually ceramic and come in many different colors and styles...some a little more decorative than others. The cats traditionally don a collar with a bell, accompanied by an ornate decoration on their belly. Most figurines have the cat holding a gold coin as well, signifying fortune.