As we enter into the Year of the Tiger, we look back to a recent Rebus piece—commissioned via our new bespoke service—which incorporates a tiger into the design. We explore the ancient symbolism behind this majestic animal, and look ahead to the coming years of the lunar calendar for the meaning behind other animals of the Chinese Zodiac.
Looking to create something truly unique outside of our core range of customisable jewellery, our client commissioned a piece via our bespoke service and was invited to a no-obligation introductory meeting to talk inspiration for the design, materials, and style of the ring.
Following initial consultation and a tour of our workshop, together with our client we expanded the concepts into a fully-formed design. Final drawings and amendments were then made, before we hand-painted a gouache artwork and produced a wax model to give an accurate representation of the final piece.
Our team of Rebus jewellers and hand engravers then began the work of bringing the design to life, with our client invited back to the workshop to be presented with their one-of-a-kind ring, along with all sketches and artwork from the design process.
Defined by confidence, leadership, bravery, and strength, the tiger is believed to expel all evil. While we fear these powerful creatures, this symbolic release of fears represents a desire to stand up for truth, justice, and integrity. As is common in animal symbolism, attributes assigned to creatures are often reflected in other cultures too; the cougar and tiger totems of Native American folklore also place the tiger as teacher and guide, representing leadership and courage.
Inspired by this ring and the symbolism behind the Year of the Tiger? Come with us as we dig deeper into the meaning behind more approaching Zodiac signs.
Year of the Rabbit 2023
As befits an animal whose living habits centre around elements of self-protection and vigilance, the rabbit symbolises deftness and caution. Rabbits are said to represent kindness and courage, and in the tradition of Chinese astrology which assigns each birth year with an animal sign, those born in the Year of the Rabbit are thought of as gentle, quiet, and elegant individuals.
Year of the Dragon 2024
The most widely-known creature in the Zodiac, the dragon is also the only mythological one. Believed to be the luckiest of signs, the dragon symbolises power, nobility, honour, and success. The dragon brings with them the prospect of good fortune; these supernatural beings have no parallel in the Zodiac so represent unrivalled talent and excellence. For this reason, the Year of the Dragon is said to be an auspicious time for taking risks and thinking about future goals.
Year of the Snake 2025
A wrongfully-maligned animal long associated with evil, the symbolism of the snake more accurately represents mystery, acumen, and divination. Sometimes referred to as the Little Dragon, the snake brings luck, fortune, and vitality. According to Taoist theory, humans inhabit a kind of force in the body which coils itself like a snake and through spiritual practice can be released to increase longevity.