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Learning the art of making bobo

By Ju Chuanjiang in Jinan | | Updated: 2015-05-08 14:21

Learning the art of making bobo

Sun Yishu (front) and her husband make bobo. Ju Chuanjiang / For China Daily

Liu used scissors to make the dough into an animal. Shortly, a bobo looked like a hedgehog, with two small black beans become its eyes. Then Liu made other shapes -- rabbits and birds.

In ancient times, bobo was used in religious worship. It is still popular in the rural areas of Weihai, Qingdao. It is full of distinctive local characteristics.

In 2009, the craftsmanship of flower bobo in Wendeng, were included in the Shandong provincial government's intangible cultural heritage list.

Every year, Wendeng holds a competition to provide a chance for bobo makers to display their unique skills.

Liu Fanrong says: "Every household here will steam bobo during the Spring Festival to usher in good luck for the next year."

"Mothers will steam bobo in shape of children's zodiac signs to celebrate kids' birthdays. In this way, she hopes the children will be healthy and clever."

Lin Rongtao, 46,started to study the craft from his mother when he was 10 year old. In 2010, Lin was awarded "inheritor of Jiaodong flower dough modeling craft" by the Shandong culture department.

Sun Yishu, 40, opened a flower bobo shop in Wendeng in 2000. The shop is not very big, but it has a good reputation. Now, she has opened two such shops and sells more than 1,000 boxes of bobo during Spring Festival.

"My bobo is good-looking and delicious. Lots of South Korean people like it," Sun says excitedly. Many South Korean bosses who open factories here buy my flower bobo to take home."

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