Master crafter of paper lanterns
- 28 Western St
Hong Kong's King of paper lanterns
Meet Hong Kong's 'king of paper lanterns': Master Leung Yau Kam. His shop, Sang Woo Long, is where a certain Li Ka-Shing and Tang Shiu Kin order their lanterns and offerings! Master Leung came to the city in the 1930s and learned the paper-making craft in one of Hong Kong's best studios. He later set up his own shop, Sang Woo Long, which was quick to earn celebrity status.
Master Leung's son Frankie now takes care of the shop. "Mid-autumn festival has always been the best time of the year. In the old days, before there were billboards, we made huge dolls animated with music, a fantastic attraction," he says. So what makes a good craftsman? "The most important skill set is flexibility. Even if the customer requests an aeroplane or a cannon, we can produce them. A real master understands the underlying principles and rationale of each step, so he can be flexible and produce everything."
Fit for a Queen
A Master Leung masterpiece was the 180-feet-golden dragon used for the celebration of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1950’s.