The 12 Most Expensive Handbags in the World – Part 2

Handbags or purse whatever you call them, these fashion items have grown to be a typical fixture for the present day woman. Each of them will come in various brands, figures, styles, and colors. Some are made for top quality fashion, while some are created to check the metropolitan chic. In any case, a lot of women don’t venture out without their handbags.

Of course, this list would not be complete without the designer of these next two handbags.

One of the most renowned luxury handbag producers on the planet is Louis Vuitton. The company got its start in Paris in 1854, and since its founding it has become a global empire with revenues of over $10 billion per year. The company’s monogrammed purses can easily be spotted around the world, and wearing a Louis Vuitton handbag is very much a status symbol. While most of the brand’s offerings are expensive, with even small bags costing several thousand dollars, a select few Louis Vuitton purses have record breaking price tags.

Louis Vuitton Tribute Patchwork Bag: Price Tag $42,000

Only 24 of these patchwork bags exist and were created using 15 different Louis Vuitton patterns.

Louis Vuitton Tribute Patchwork Bag

This bag caused a huge buzz when it debuted in 2007 for many reasons. While some clamored to get one due to its exclusivity, including celebrities such as Beyonce and Rihanna, others were unimpressed with the bag’s mish-mash of styles. To create the concept for the Tribute Patchwork Bag, Louis Vuitton basically combined different parts of 15 different bags from one of its spring/summer collections. When you look at it, you see a handle from one handbag, a pocket from another, and motifs and patterns from many others — visually, some deemed the purse to be an expensive trainwreck.

Others who didn’t mind shelling out $45,000 for the purse thought it was creative and artsy. The reason the Tribute Patchwork Bag is so expensive is partly because it’s from Louis Vuitton, and also because it’s a limited edition and only 24 units were made. Each one of the two dozen purses quickly sold out, so the only way to get one now is to pay even more for the purse at auction or through private sale. This definitely isn’t one of the classiest Louis Vuitton handbags ever made, but it ranks among the brand’s most costly and most talked about purses.

Louis Vuitton New Age Traveller backpack: Price Tag $54,500

The LV New Age Traveller backpack features various lurex jacquard woven Monogram fabrics alongside exotic skins including crocodile and snakeskin. The bag also has suede leather tassels and headphone cables, and two furry fox tail charms.

Louis Vuitton New Age Traveller backpack

One look at this stunning Louis Vuitton New Age Traveler Backpack and you are sure to be under its spell. Adorned with tassels, this beautiful backpack comes with a $54,000 price tag! The cream bag with the Louis Vuitton monogram pattern is one hot accessory. Made from exquisite materials and flaunting the luxurious LV logo this bag is for the uber rich chics only. Out of the reach of many, this backpack is definitely a class apart.

Leiber Precious Rose: Price Tag $92,000

Leiber Precious Rose

The Leiber Precious Rose accessory features 1,016 diamonds totaling 42.56 carats, 1,169 pink sapphires and 800 tourmalines, all set in 18-carat white gold. So precious, that there is only one available in the world.

It is a matter of open reality that this bag is still one of the most expensive bags available on the face of this planet these days. The Judith Leiber’s 2007 Precious Rose ladies handbag is only one of its kind on earth.

The Precious Rose is an adorable little red bud of the ladies handbag, and the strap is apparently manufactured from the same metallic kidskin that lines the petite fleur. The bag, obviously leaving hardly any room for the owner’s stuff, must be designed as arm chocolate rather than a tote. Unfortunately, this important cluster of gems is no more offered by Judith Leiber boutiques, or online. Only 1 part was made and was sold much before it premiered.

Though it is almost impossible to locate, we must expect that the Precious Rose is currently in possession of a remarkably wealthy star or royal family member.  In addition, depending on who is the owner of this unique creation, the bag may be worth even more than its retailed $92,000.

More Expensive Handbags to come in Part 3 of this series.

(Information from luxos.com)

Easter Traditions – Part 4

English-speaking World

Marshmallow bunnies and candy eggs in an Easter basket. In many cultures rabbits, which represent fertility, are a symbol of Easter.

Throughout the English-speaking world, many Easter traditions are similar with only minor differences. For example, Saturday is traditionally spent decorating Easter eggs and hunting for them with children on Sunday morning, by which time they have been mysteriously hidden all over the house and garden. Other traditions involve parents telling their children that eggs and other treats, such as chocolate eggs or rabbits, and marshmallow chicks (Peeps), have been delivered by the Easter Bunny in an Easter basket, which children find waiting for them when they wake up. Many families observe the religious aspects of Easter by attending Sunday Mass or services in the morning and then participating in a feast or party in the afternoon.

Some families have a traditional Sunday roast, often of either roast lamb or ham. Easter breads such as Simnel cake, a fruit cake with eleven marzipan balls representing the eleven faithful apostles, or nut breads such as potica are traditionally served. Hot cross buns, spiced buns with a cross on top, are traditionally associated with Good Friday, but today are often eaten well before and after (and, indeed, are sold in many supermarkets and bakers’ all year round).

In Europe

In Scotland, the north of England, and Northern Ireland, the traditions of rolling decorated eggs down steep hills and pace egging are still adhered to.

In the Republic of Ireland (officially) and in Northern Ireland (for some people), Easter is a day of remembrance for the men and women who died in the Easter Rising which began on Easter Monday 1916. Until 1966, there was a parade of veterans, past the headquarters of the Irish Volunteers at the General Post Office (GPO) on O’Connell Street, Dublin, and a reading of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic. It is usually celebrated on Easter Monday.

The Caribbean

In the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda, historically famous for growing and exporting the Easter lily, the most notable feature of the Easter celebration is the flying of kites to symbolize Christ’s ascent. Traditional Bermuda kites are constructed by Bermudians of all ages as Easter approaches, and are normally only flown at Easter. In addition to hot cross buns and Easter eggs, fish cakes are traditionally eaten in Bermuda at this time.

In Jamaica, eating bun and cheese is a highly anticipated custom by Jamaican nationals all over the world. The Jamaica Easter Buns are spiced and have raisins, and baked in a loaf tin. The buns are sliced and eaten with a slice of cheese. It is a common practice for employers to make gifts of bun and cheese or a single loaf of bun to staff members. According to the Jamaica Gleaner, “The basic Easter bun recipe requires wheat flour, brown sugar, molasses, baking powder or yeast and dried fruits.” Easter egg traditions and the Easter Bunny activities are not widespread in Jamaica. Also, Jamaican traditions include sometimes include throwing garlic onto the floor as a sign of good luck during Easter dinner.

(Information from
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Easter Traditions – Part 3

Nordic countries

In Norway, in addition to staying at mountain cabins, cross-country skiing and painting eggs, a contemporary tradition is to read or watch murder mysteries at Easter. All the major television channels run crime and detective stories (such as Agatha Christie’s Poirot), magazines print stories where the readers can try to figure out “Whodunnit”, and new detective novels are scheduled for publishing before Easter. Even the milk cartons are altered for a couple of weeks. Each Easter a new short mystery story is printed on their sides. Stores and businesses close for five straight days at Easter, with the exception of grocery stores, which re-open for a single day on the Saturday before Easter Sunday.

In Finland and Sweden, traditions include egg painting and small children dressed as witches collecting candy door-to-door, in exchange for decorated pussy willows. This is a result of the mixing of an old Orthodox tradition (blessing houses with willow branches) and the Swedish Easter witch tradition. Brightly colored feathers and little decorations are also attached to birch branches in a vase. In Finland, it is common to plant rye grass in a pot as a symbol of spring and new life. After the grass has grown, many people put chick decorations on it. Children busy themselves painting eggs and making paper bunnies.

Denmark has the gækkebrev tradition of sending relatives and friends artful paper cuttings, often with a snowdrop, and a rhyme with the letters of the sender’s name replaced by dots. If the recipient guesses who sent it, the sender owes them a chocolate egg; and vice versa if they can’t.[ The decorated letter custom was originally a means of proposal or courtship, but is now considered mostly for children.

For lunch or dinner on Holy Saturday, families in Sweden and Denmark traditionally feast on a smörgåsbord of herring, salmon, potatoes, eggs, and other kinds of food. In Finland, it is common to eat roasted lamb with potatoes and other vegetables. In Finland, the Lutheran majority enjoys mämmi as another traditional Easter treat, while the Orthodox minority’s traditions include eating pasha (also spelled paskha) instead.

In the western parts of Sweden and in Finnish Ostrobothnia, bonfires have at least since the 18th century been lit during Holy Saturday. This tradition is claimed to have its origin in Holland. During the last decades though, the bonfires have in many places been moved to Walpurgis Night, as this is the traditional date for bonfires in many other parts of the country.

Cyprus

As well as the common painted Easter egg bump, in Cyprus it is customary for people to light great fires (Greek: λαμπρατζια) in schools or church yards. The fires are made up of scrap wood, gathered usually by enthusiastic young boys which scour their neighborhoods for them, in order to make their fire as great as it can be (and bigger than the neighboring one). More than often this competition leads to fights happening over scraps of wood and the police or fire department being called to put out the fires that have gone out of control. It is customary for a small doll representing Judas Iscariot to be burnt. The same thing happens on Crete, but it is non-competitive, and the fire is called “founara” which means “big fire” in Cretan Greek. The founara burns coupled with the detonation of small dynamites called “plakatzikia” in plural, and with gunshots in the air.

(Information from
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

More about Easter Traditions in Part 4

Easter Traditions – Part 2

Continental Europe

Central and Eastern Europe

Poland

In Poland, white sausage and mazurek are typical Easter breakfast dishes.

The butter lamb (Baranek wielkanocny) is a traditional addition to the Easter meal for many Polish Catholics. Butter is shaped into a lamb either by hand or in a lamb-shaped mold.

Ukraine

Preparations for Easter celebration in Ukraine begin weeks before the feast day, with Great Lent being part of it. The Ukrainian Easter eggs include pysanky,[ krashanky (edible, one-colour dyed eggs), driapanky (a design is scratched on the eggshell) etc. During the Easter Vigil a priest also blesses the parishioners’ Easter baskets, which include Easter eggs, paska,[ butter, cheese, kovbasa, salt and a few other products. With this food, on their return home, people break their fast. The ritual is called ‘rozhovyny’. People visit their relatives and neighbours exchanging Easter greetings. Celebration of Easter in Ukraine is filled with many other customs and rituals, most of which are centuries-old.[

Italy

In Florence, Italy, the unique custom of the Scoppio del carro is observed in which a holy fire lit from stone shards from the Holy Sepulchre are used to light a fire during the singing of the Gloria of the Easter Sunday mass, which is used to ignite a rocket in the form of a dove, representing peace and the holy spirit, which following a wire in turn lights a cart containing pyrotechnics in the small square before the Cathedral.[c

The Netherlands, Belgium and France

Church bells are silent as a sign of mourning for one or more days before Easter in The Netherlands, Belgium and France. This has led to an Easter tradition that says the bells fly out of their steeples to go to Rome (explaining their silence), and return on Easter morning bringing both colored eggs and hollow chocolate shaped like eggs or rabbits.

In both The Netherlands and Dutch-speaking Belgium many of more modern traditions exist alongside the Easter Bell story. The bells (“de Paasklokken”) leave for Rome on Holy Saturday, called “Stille Zaterdag” (literally “Silent Saturday”) in Dutch. In the northern and eastern parts of the Netherlands (Twente and Achterhoek), Easter Fires (in Dutch: Paasvuur) are lit on Easter Day at sunset.

In French-speaking Belgium and France the same story of Easter Bells (« les cloches de Pâques ») bringing eggs from Rome is told, but church bells are silent beginning Maundy Thursday, the first day of the Paschal Triduum.

Northern German

In northern Germany, Easter Fires (in German: Osterfeuer, listen (help·info)) are lit around sunset on Holy Saturday. Each of the federal states have their own regulations for allowing and/or the way of staging Easter Fires: While in the city and state of Hamburg, private persons are allowed to have an Easter Fire of any size on their own premises, in Schleswig-Holstein, for example, only the wide-spread voluntary fire brigades are allowed to organize and stage them on open fields. Over the past years, Easter Fires themselves have become larger and developed to smaller versions of Volksfests with some snack stands selling Bratwurst, steak in bread rolls, beer, wine, and soft drinks as well as maybe one or two rides for the children. Usually, Easter Fires are kept burning over hours until dawn (roughly around 6 o’clock) and cause therefore a special atmosphere during the whole Easter Night with their bright lights in the dark and the omnipresent smell of smoke.

During the weeks before Easter, special Easter bread is sold (in German: Osterbrot). This is made with yeast dough, raisins, and almond splinters. Usually, it is cut in slices and spread with butter. People enjoy it either for breakfast or for tea time (in German: Kaffee und Kuchen, literally ″coffee and cake″).

More in Part 3 of Easter Traditions.

(Information
from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Easter Traditions – Part 1

Since its origins, Easter has been a time of celebration and feasting and many traditional Easter games and customs developed, such as egg rolling, egg tapping, pace egging, cascarones or confetti eggs, and egg decorating. Today Easter is commercially important, seeing wide sales of greeting cards and confectionery such as chocolate Easter eggs as well as other Easter foods. Even many non-Christians celebrate these features of the holiday while ignoring the religious aspects.

Continental Europe

Central and Eastern Europe

Many central and eastern European ethnic groups, including the Albanians, Armenians, Belarusians, Bulgarians, Croats, Czechs, Georgians, Germans, Hungarians, Latvians, Lithuanians, Macedonians, Poles, Romanians, Russians, Serbs, Slovaks, Slovenes, and Ukrainians, decorate eggs for Easter.

In Bulgaria, the Easter eggs are decorated on Thursday or Saturday before Easter. Widespread tradition is to fight with eggs by pair, and the one who’s egg is the last surviving is called borak (Bulgarian: борак, fighter). The tradition is to display the decorated eggs on the Easter table together with the Easter dinner consisting of roasted lamb, a salad called Easter salad (lettuce with cucumbers), and a sweet bread called kozunak.

In Germany, decorated eggs are hung on branches of bushes and trees to make them Easter egg trees. Eggs are also used to dress wells for Easter, the Osterbrunnen, most prominently in the Fränkische Schweiz (Franconian Switzerland).[

In Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, and Slovenia, a basket of food is prepared, covered with a handmade cloth, and brought to the church to be blessed. A typical Easter basket includes bread, colored eggs, ham, horseradish, and a type of nut cake called “potica”.[

Hungary

In Hungary, Transylvania, Southern Slovakia, Kárpátalja, Northern Serbia – Vojvodina, and other territories with Hungarian-speaking communities, the day following Easter is called Locsoló Hétfő, “Watering Monday”. Men usually visit families with girls and women. Water, perfume or perfumed water is sprinkled on the women and girls of the house by the visiting men, who are given in exchange an Easter egg. Traditionally Easter ham, colored boiled eggs and horseradish sauce is consumed on Sunday morning.

More about Easter Traditions in Part 2.

(Information from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

EPCOT AT NIGHT IN DISNEY WORLD

EPCOT AT NIGHT IN DISNEY WORLD

epcot

Epcot is one of the best parks to enjoy at night. The atmosphere is unlike any other theme park, with its music, mood lighting, and nightlife. And while there are many more things to do in Epcot at during the day, here are a few fun night time events to enjoy.

1. Take a Trip Back to Future World

If you’re an adrenaline junkie who doesn’t want to wait on those long ride lines during the day, be sure to try them at night! The standby wait times for Soarin’ Around The World, Test Track, and Spaceship Earth are significantly shorter at night when park guests are at dinner in World Showcase or watching Illuminations.

2. British Revolution

If you’re a fan of rock and roll, beer, or just having a good time, this one is for you! British Revolution is a quartet that performs classic rock hits by Queen, The Who, The Beatles, and more. These performances are open-air, and open to everyone, so be sure to catch a show in the United Kingdom pavilion.  Visit the pub afterwards!

3. Drinking Around the World

Not many people can say they have drank around the world all in one night, but you can when you’re in Epcot. Disney really does have something for everyone to enjoy. Go ahead, have a Citron Slush or glass of champagne in France, a glass of wine in Italy, a margarita in Mexico, some German beer in Germany and sake in Japan – you’ll be glad you did.

4. Dinner & a Show

A few restaurants around World Showcase offer prime locations for watching Illuminations. Some favorites are Monsieur Paul’s in the France pavilion and the Spice Road Table in Morocco. Both have tables that overlook the World Showcase Lagoon, which make them great spots for catching Illuminations! If you’re looking to watch the show while dining, I recommend making your reservation around 9:30 p.m. for the 10 p.m. showing.

SEAS
test track 2

5. Watch Illuminations

This one is a given. Illuminations: Reflections of Earth is the fireworks show of Epcot. It combines fireworks, lasers, music, and lights into a performance that is sure to make your jaw drop. Viewing locations can be found all over World Showcase, but a fantastic spot is by Future World (with a FastPass if you can get one.)  Note:  This show will be ending at the end of Summer 2019 so go to it while you can.  It is a great show!!

(Information obtained from DisDining.com)

Mardi Gras Day in New Orleans

That’s the call to riders dispensing beads and “throws” from the elaborate floats of Mardi Gras. The name of the holiday’s misleading. It’s about a month or so of parties named for just one day, Fat Tuesday, the last day before Lent. But Mardi Gras is more in New Orleans. No one does Carnival like the Crescent City. Beginning on Twelfth Night, Jan. 6, the city is obsessed with eating, costuming, bead-tossing and parading that increases in intensity as Ash Wednesday nears. On the weekends leading up to Fat Tuesday, parades roll all over town. Spectators gasp at the colossal Endymion floats and delight in the social satire of Krewe d’Etat’s. There are new traditions like Chewbacchus with its Star Wars-inspired tomfoolery and ages old ones such as Zulu and Rex. Visitors are encouraged to explore New Orleans Mardi Gras traditions. To eat oysters and king cake, watch parades roll down St. Charles Avenue and tag along with marching krewes as they wind their way into the Quarter from New Orleans historic neighborhoods.

The biggest parades in New Orleans happen on Mardi Gras day, which is the Tuesday before Lent begins, 47 days before Easter. This date can fall anywhere from the 3rd February through to 10th March.

Photo 19

The main Mardi Gras parades happen on the Tuesday itself, with a good many other parades in the week leading up to Mardi Gras day itself.

Contrary to public perception, Mardi Gras is a family celebration. Those of us who grew up in New Orleans feel guilty once our children have grown up and we continue going to every parade, because we used to use “taking the children” as our excuse! Bring big bags (even large garbage bags!) to hold all of the stuff they will catch. Throws often include toys, stuffed animals, beads and more.

Photo 35

The only place you should avoid with kids is the French Quarter (where no full-size parades pass anyway). We recommend seeing the parades when they begin on St. Charles Avenue near Napoleon, since parades can last until 11 p.m. near the end of the route. The Garden District portion of St. Charles is a family area where you will see many families staking out their parade watching position, having picnics, playing ball, and having fun under the beautiful oak trees. You don’t have to worry about the streetcars, as they stop running in this area during Mardi Gras.

Photo 63

You may also want to consider taking your kids to the parades in the suburban areas like Metairie, which is only 10 minutes away from New Orleans. Metairie’s Caesar parade, the Saturday before Mardi Gras weekend, is the parade Disneyworld features on Mardi Gras day. Kids love it!

Happy Mardi Gras!!!

(Information from mardigrasneworleans.com)

MARCHING CLUBS AND DANCE TROUPES

What would Mardi Gras be without its parades? And what would Mardi Gras parades be without it sassy, sequined, irreverent dance troupes and marching clubs? In the past few years, marching groups have been popping up all over. It’s a great way to be a part of Mardi Gras without the expense of joining a big krewe. The best of the best groups like to do it up big. Big costumes, big color, big hair, big glitter. Watch for these great groups on the parade route:


Here are just a few of the many groups:

Amazons – To represent a certain “ferocity of spirit and soul,” the Amazons, some of whom are cancer survivors, don’t smile on their parade route. They don warrior tunics and breast armor, and, along with the Scythians (their male supporters), they perform formations during marches with their swords.

Amelia EarHawts Cabin Krewe – This dance group was founded in in 2014, inspired by the tragic female aviation pioneer who spent some of her last days at Lakefront Airport in New Orleans. They take off down the street in old-time flight attendant outfits.

Bearded Oysters – No, New Orleans hasn’t got to the point where we have realoysters dancing down the street, but we do have this girls’ troupe that’s more into shaking and wooing than any kind of stilted choreography. Men are also involved, dressed up as chefs and called “Oyster Shuckers.”

Black Storyville Baby Dolls – Founded in 2014,this group throws black roses to honor the women who costumed and paraded in the African-American part of New Orleans’ red-light district in 1912. They also throw cigars which the first dolls smoked openly in public.Joining them on the route are the “Basin Street Characters.”

Big Easy Rollergirls – What Fat Tuesday parade would be complete without New Orleans’ only professional roller derby team? The girls are ready to put on a jam – and maybe even challenge you to a match race!

Crescent City Dames – Since 2012, the Crescent City Dames have created their own hand-beaded corsets. In the past, themes have included “Women of Power,” “The Holidays” and “Toasting the Cocktail.” They sashay annually on theFriday before Mardi Gras in the French Quarter.

The Dance Connection – This 40+ year old group’s motto is “UNITY…Though dance and Friendship.” Established in 1979, TDC was the first troupe to use a mobile sound system.

Divine Jewels of Covington – This marching group recycles Mardi Gras beads in an interesting way – they use them to make elaborately decorated bustiers and other accoutrements. The guys who accompany the Jewels are called Jokers. They wear top hats and dress in black with an accent color matching their Jewel. The group was founded in 2018 and currently has 44 Jewels and 27 Jokers. Come see them in the French Quarter the Friday before Mardi Gras.

The Half-Fast Walking Club ­–  The best known marching group in New Orleans might just be The Half-Fast Walking Club, founded by legendary clarinetist Pete Fountain and his friends in 1961. Although Pete passed away in 2016, his band of merry men continue on, following a route, unchanged since the mid-1970s. They begin at 7 a.m. on Mardi Gras morning at Commander’s Palace in the Garden District,  “toot and scoot”  downtown on St. Charles Avenue and, after a brief interlude on Canal Street, turn onto Bourbon Street, wind around the Quarter, and eventually end up at the Monteleone Hotel.

Krewe of the Rolling Elvi – This group has two goals. Honor the memory of the King and entertain parade revelers. They succeed on both levels. Dozens of sequin clad men riding around on scooters is a site you don’t want to miss.

Jailhouse Rockers – This krewe is a spin-off of the popular Krewe of the Rolling Elvi. Thank you, thank you, thank you very much for applauding them on the parade route.

Laissez Boys – They don’t dance or march but, in the true spirit of Mardi Gras this krewe rolls. Watch for their motorized Lazy Boys on the parade route. You’ll have a new appreciation for that beat-up recliner in your parents living room. In fact, you’ll find yourself mumbling, “I need one of those.”

Muff-a-Lottas – Named after New Orleans’ famous sandwich the muffuletta, this groupdresses like feisty 1950s diner waitresses in saddle shoes and short skirts. They only dance to oldies with a New Orleans connection – tunes from Ernie K Doe, Irma Thomas, Fats Domino, The Dixie Cups, Shirley Ellis, and so on! They throw scarves, cat-eye sunglasses and special Muff-A-Lotta beads.


NOLA Showgirls –Those ostrich-feather fans belong to the NOLA Showgirls who add a little Las Vegas glamour to parade route (their Sunset Strip.)They’ve appeared in several TV shows, movies and commercials.


Red Beans – The first bean krewe was founded in 2008 and paraded for the first time in 2009. The 150 krewe members march on “the best Monday of the year,” Lundi Gras, at 2 p.m through the Marigny and Treme where they meet the Dead Beans.They are typically joined by thousands of “unofficial” paraders  in their own bean suits.

Roux La La – Founded in 2009, this group get its name from the roux (a base for gumbo). According to their website, they are “New Orleans’ official swamp steppin’, booty shakin’, booze guzzlin’, pot stirrin’, GLITTER IN YOUR FACE female dance troupe. Their aim is to “better our community one sequin at a time.”

Sirens of New Orleans – Since 2010, the dancing mermaids and the Sailor Corp have danced the entire route of every parade they’ve been in, tossing their signature decorated “message in a bottle.”

The Streetcar Strutters – This group rolled down St. Charles Avenue for the first time in 2017. Their group’s green and gold costumes feature hand-decorated conductor caps.

TAP DAT – Established in 2008, TAP DAT wears black and gold costumes and tap dances their way into Mardi Gras history every year.

(Information from mardigrasneworleans.com)


MARDI GRAS BEADS AND THROWS

So what are “throws?” Well, they are exactly what they sound like – items that krewe members on floats throw to parade-goers as the floats pass by! Throws often include doubloons, beads, cups, homemade trinkets, toys and more! 

The throwing of trinkets to the crowds was started in the early 1870s by the Twelfth Night Revelers, and is a time-honored expectation for young and old alike.

In 1884, Rex started using medallions instead of trinkets. These medallions are represented by today’s doubloons, aluminum and anodized in many different colors. They depict the parade theme on one side and the Krewe’s emblem on the other. They have become collectors items.

In the Bacchus parade, the King’s float throws doubloons with the image of the celebrity king on one side of the doubloon. If you’re lucky enough to catch one, hold onto it!

The most prized throws are the krewe’s “signature throws.” Zulu has it famous coconuts and many other krewes offer hand-decorated items including Muses shoes, Nyx purses, Alla Genie lamps, Carrollton shrimp boots and the list goes on. Most krewes have medallion beads that feature that year’s theme.

Other popular throws include cups (otherwise known as New Orleans dinnerware), long pearl beads and stuffed animals. Some throws even light up.

Image result for mardi gras cups

Be warned! If you’re at your first parade and reach down to pick up a doubloon with your hand, your fingers may never be the same! Many stomp on doubloons in their rush to claim them.

Hint: If you’re standing next to a bunch of old grandmothers dressed in high heels and playboy bunny outfits, don’t think your chances are any better. They may be old, but they have fast feet and the spikes on those heels – ouch! Hahaha!

Happy Mardi Gras!!!

(Information from mardigrasneworleans.com)

MARDI GRAS INDIANS – PART 3

Parade formation and Protocol

The Mardi Gras Indians play various traditional roles. Many blocks ahead of the Indians are plain clothed informants keeping an eye out for any danger. The procession begins with “spyboys,” dressed in light “running suits” that allow them the freedom to move quickly in case of emergency. Next comes the “first flag,” an ornately dressed Indian carrying a token tribe flag. Closest to the “Big Chief” is the “Wildman” who usually carries a symbolic weapon. Finally, there is the “Big Chief.” The “Big Chief” decides where to go and which tribes to meet (or ignore). The entire group is followed by percussionists and revelers.

During the march, the Indians dance and sing traditional songs particular to their gang. They use hodgepodge languages loosely based on different African dialects. The “Big Chief” decides where the group will parade; the parade route is different each time. When two tribes come across each other, they either pass by or meet for a symbolic fight. Each tribe lines up and the “Big Chiefs” taunt each other about their suits and their tribes. The drum beats of the two tribes intertwine, and the face off is complete. Both tribes continue on their way.[

Violence

In the early days of the Indians, Mardi Gras was a day of both reveling and bloodshed. “Masking” and parading was a time to settle grudges. This part of Mardi Gras Indian history is immortalized in James Sugar Boy Crawford’s song, “Jock O Mo” (better known and often covered as “Iko Iko“), based on their taunting chants. However, in the late 1960s, Allison Montana, “Chief of Chiefs”, fought to end violence between the Mardi Gras Indian Tribes.  He said, “I was going to make them stop fighting with the gun and the knife and start fighting with the needle and thread.” Today, the Mardi Gras Indians are not plagued by violence; instead they base their fights over the “prettiness” of their suits.

Long ago, Mardi Gras was a violent day for many Mardi Gras Indians. It was a day often used to settle scores. The police were often unable to intervene due to the general confusion surrounding Mardi Gras events in the city, when the streets were crowded and everyone was masked. This kept many families away from the “parade,” and created much worry and concern for a mothers whose children wanted to join the Indians.

Today when two Mardi Gras Indian tribes pass one another, you will see a living theater of art and culture. Each tribe’s style and dress is on display in a friendly but competitive manner. They compare one another’s art and craftsmanship.

The Big Chiefs of two different tribes start with a song/chant, ceremonial dance, and threatening challenge to “Humba”. The Big Chief’s demand that the other Chief bows and pays respect. The retort is a whoop and equally impressive song and war dance with the reply, “Me no Humba, YOU Humba!”

Although there was a history of violence, many now choose to keep this celebration friendly. Each Big Chief will eventually stand back and, with a theatrical display of self-confidence, acknowledge the artistry and craftsmanship of the other chief’s suit.

Before the progression can continue, the two Big Chiefs will often comment privately to one another, “Looking good, baby, looking good!”

The good news is Mardi Gras day is no longer a day to “settle scores” among the Mardi Gras Indians. Now that the tradition and practice for the Indians to compare their tribal song, dance and dress with other tribes as they meet that day, violence is a thing of the past. The Mardi Gras Indian has invested thousands of hours and dollars in the creation of his suit, and will not run the risk of ruining it in a fight. This tradition, rich with folk art and history, is now appreciated by museums and historical societies around the world. It is a remarkable and welcome change from the past.

(Information from mardigrasneworleans.com)