If you have friends who are parents in Singapore, you may have heard of a red egg and ginger party. This is a traditional Chinese custom that celebrates a baby’s first full month. Also known as a full month party or full moon party, a red egg and ginger party is a joyous occasion where parents get to introduce their new bundle of joy to the world. If you’ve never attended this type of party before, these are some tips on what to expect.
Why is it called a red egg and ginger party?
PHOTO 1: REDEGGANDGINGERPARTY.COM
The name of the party comes from the red-dyed eggs and pickled ginger that are traditionally served at a full month party in Singapore. The eggs symbolise fertility and rebirth, and the pickled ginger is said to rebalance the body after childbirth. Another reason for the ginger may be that the Cantonese word for sour is pronounced the same as the word for grandson, so it symbolises many more grandsons to come.
Typically a red egg and ginger party takes place close to the day a newborn turns one month old. However, this may change depending on what is most convenient for the family. In fact, some parents even wait to throw a 100-days celebration, although this is a relatively new trend in Singapore. Either way, you will most likely receive an invitation a few weeks in advance letting you know the date and time of the party.
PHOTO 2: NEOGARDEN.COM.SG
The size of the party determines the venue. Some couples opt to have intimate gatherings like lunch or tea at their home with close family and friends, while others go all out with big galas in private rooms at restaurants, banquet halls, or community centres. No matter where the party is held, you can expect lots of red decorations for good luck and plenty of food.
What to Expect?
The main goal of a red egg and ginger party is to introduce the infant to family and friends, so throughout the party you will find the parents making the rounds with the newborn. Traditionally parents also announce the Chinese name of the baby at the red egg and ginger party. Guests are usually treated to an array of traditional Chinese dishes and given goodie bags with items like traditional Chinese cakes. However, modern parents may prefer to give other sweet treats like cookies and cupcakes or even baby hampers.
Whether the party is at a couple’s home or a larger venue, it’s always a good idea to dress smartly for a red egg and ginger party. You don’t have to go overboard, but you should try to wear semi-formal attire. Red is a great colour to wear because it symbolises good luck, while black and white should be avoided, as they symbolise death.
Gift Giving in Singapore
Just like at any other birthday party, guests are expected to bring gifts to a red egg and ginger party. These could include anything from red envelopes filled with money to soft toys, blankets, clothes, or even customised baby keepsakes like silver spoons or jewellery. If you’re stuck on a gift, we have a gorgeous selection of baby gift sets that have been lovingly personalised with newborn's first year in mind.