Thursday, April 9, 2009

Doljanchi

I was asked to take pictures for my friend's son's dol, his first birthday celebration. Dol, or doljanchi, is a Korean tradition that celebrates the birthday of a 1-year old child. The birthday babies wear a hanbok and a traditional hat; jobawi or gulle for girls, and bokgeon or hogeon for boys.

The highlight of the dol is a "ritual" where the child is placed in front of a table of foods and objects such as string, books, brushes, ink and money. The child is then urged to pick up an object from the table, where it is believed the one selected will foretell the child's future. For example, if the child picks up a brush or book, he is destined to be a scholar. If he picks up money or rice, he will be wealthy; cakes or other food, a government official; a sword or bow, a military commander. If the child picks up the thread, it is believed he will live a long life. This is followed by feasting, singing, and playing with the toddler. Most often, guests will present gifts of money, clothes, or gold rings to the parents for the child at this time. Click the pictures to view the gallery.


Andrew DeStefani
Andrew DeStefani

Andrew DeStefani
Deciding what to pick up...

Andrew DeStefani
Proud Mom and Dad, Joe and Dawn, with Andrew

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