Every year, brands (secretly) compete with each other to produce the most beautiful, creative and ultra-luxe lai see – also called hong bao – packets, usually depicting the animal of the year according to the Chinese zodiac.
Last year, we saw a host of adorable Year of the Dog-themed red envelopes, but 2019 belongs to the Pig. Let’s take a look at some of the best designs from luxury brands this year.
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Some brands made the pig look as pretty as possible.
1. Salvatore Ferragamo
Ferragamo’s envelopes were embossed with golden pigs, surrounded by other nature motifs – possibly to hide the pig? Regardless, it is tastefully designed.
2. Bottega Veneta
The luxury brand’s minimalist take on their lai see packet is simple but impressive, with just a piggy outline stamped in gold on a scarlet envelope.
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3. Shiatzy Chen
The Chinese fashion house always delights us with its annual designs, and this year is no different. Its envelopes this year are designed with pigs cleverly morphing into various Chinese fruits and vegetables – deliciously pretty!
4. Stuart Weitzman
One way to make a pig look cute is through a cartoon drawing, which is exactly what the shoe brand did – doodles of piggies and traditional Chinese pennies feature are all over the red envelopes.
5. Tory Burch
Think cute piggy envelopes in a bag within a bag when it comes to this year’s Tory Burch’s lai see packets. The stylised embossing shows chunky little porkers facing in four different directions.
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These brands upped the luxury factor.
6. Giuseppe Zanotti
Giuseppe Zanotti has created a drawer-style box for its beautiful floral hong bao packets, with a lovely red-leather holder stashed in the bottom drawer.
The luxury brand placed its intricately designed envelopes inside a laser-cut stencil box. We are impressed!
8. De Beers
The diamond brand offered up a premium box of lai see packets – with its classic flower emblazoned on it.
9. Times Square
A luxe felt drawstring bag contains these envelopes, each covered in patterns resembling intricate embroidery – an elegant nod to traditional Chinese fabrics.
Luxury brand Burberry has embossed its new logo on thick, shiny paper to create envelopes that resemble a handbag.
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Some brands skipped the pig altogether, and went with a floral/nature theme.
11. Lane Crawford
Designed by Michell Lie, a finalist in Lane Crawford Creative Call Out Hong Kong 2017, these packets feature gorgeous Asian cherry blossom trees that look as if they are painted straight onto the envelope.
These double-layered lai see envelopes are thoughtfully designed – the outer gold layer resembles a bamboo forest, neatly overlaid upon the traditional red paper.
13. Wynn Macau
The premium hotel brand’s packets are made of thick, high-quality red paper with finely detailed designs, and look a lot like dainty purses.
14. Tiffany & Co.
The red of the envelopes clashes with the Tiffany Teal box, but it does boast cute clovers in different shades of crimson.
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15. Pacific Place
With an embossed butterfly on the front and interesting flower cut-out on the back that helps close the envelope, Pacific Place has outdone itself this year.
These brands put in maximum effort and managed to pull off some of the most gorgeous lai see packets.
16. Shanghai Tang
The Chinese clothing brand, known for its traditional designs, is encouraging lai see givers to help the piggy cut-out on each envelope “wear” different “outfits”, thanks to the variety of patterned cards the packets come with. How we love these designs!
17. Harry Winston
The luxury jewellery brand put a lot of thought into these gorgeous envelopes, which count among our favourites: they feature an intricate stencil of an adorable pig inset with a traditional Chinese design, which is both the background and the main art.
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With its classic motif of a leopard ensconced in a flower, Cartier’s packets this year embody luxury, with a gold slip-out envelope and a beautiful red stenciled holder.
19. Harbour City
Lai see packets are usually square or rectangular, but this year, Harbour City has designed its envelopes to resemble a Chinese-style purse, with bold, colourful motifs.
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Inspiration for the shoe brand’s envelopes seems to have come from grand old Chinese-style lattice doors featuring lanterns and geometrical patterns. The stenciled envelopes look and feel ultra-luxurious – which we love.
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