It can be nerve wracking to be invited to meet your girlfriend's parents. So you want to make sure that you don't make any breaches of etiquette. If your girlfriend happens to be Chinese, then you should pay special attention to the type of flowers you bring as a gift. It is a nice and polite gesture to bring a gift of flowers, but you have to pick the correct color. In Chinese culture, colors have a very powerful symbolic meaning. When it comes to flowers, you can't simply bring any pretty flower. The wrong color could suggest sorrow or sadness. So here is a quick primer on how to make the right choice.
White Is An Inappropriate Choice
You might think that a beautiful white flower, such as white daises or carnations, would be a great choice. In the West, white has the connotation of purity or innocence. It's not as hot blooded as red, which is normally for passion and love. But in China, white is a color that is associated with sadness. This is why white flowers are used at funerals. So skip the white flowers.
Don't Be Afraid Of Red
You might have thought that red was an inappropriate color. In the West, red is symbolic of love. That's why you see so many red roses on Valentine's day. However, in China, red does not have these strong romantic overtones. Red is associated with good luck, and also the notion of prosperity. Red is used in weddings, and also for ceremonies such as opening a new business.
If you still feel a bit odd about giving red roses, don't worry, there are lots of other beautiful red flowers. Red carnations are particularly popular in Chinese culture. These are small flowers that make a beautiful arrangement. You might also consider a small bouquet of peonies.
Another option, and one that will defiantly impress her parents if they are avid gardeners, is to purchase a potted red orchid. The potted plant will last a lot longer then cut flowers, so they can keep it for a long time and enjoy it. Also, the orchid has a long history of being important in Chinese culture. It even features in the writings of Confucius.
Don't Forget Yellow
While yellow doesn't have the same significance that red does, it's still considered a lucky color. In particular, yellow is associated with royalty. The color is an important part of the royal dynasty's garments. If you like the idea of using this color, you could pick out a nice assortment of yellow tulips.
For more ideas, contact your local flower shop.