Athletes holding Bing Dwen Dwen pose for photos during the flower ceremony after the mixed team relay final of short track speed skating at the Capital Indoor Stadium in Beijing on February 5 (XINHUA)
A cute panda wearing an ice shell, Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic mascot Bing Dwen Dwen has become the breakout star of the Games, winning the hearts of millions worldwide since the Olympics kicked off on February 4.
Inside the Olympic Village, athletes and staff are scrambling to post photos and videos with the mini panda and buy their own souvenirs. Outside the closed Olympic loop, mascot merchandise like key chains and dolls have already sold out at licensed stores, online or physical.
Workers produce Bing Dwen Dwen merchandise at a licensed manufacturer in Qidong, east China's Jiangsu Province, on February 8 (XINHUA)
“The demand completely exceeds supply. Every time we restocked, we sold out in the blink of an eye," said Li Jia, market manager of a souvenir shop at Gongmei Emporium in downtown Beijing’s Wangfujing shopping area.
A Japanese video report also went viral after reporter Gido Tsujioka showed six Bing Dwen Dwen badges pinned on his press card, earning himself the nickname “Gido Dwen Dwen.”
The Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (BOCOG) said the supply of Bing Dwen Dwen toys will increase to meet surging customer demand.
Bing Dwen Dwen in its Chinese New Year edition (XINHUA)
Moreover, the BOCOG has come out with a Bing Dwen Dwen Chinese New Year edition, to meet the “one Bing Dwen Dwen per family” hashtag now trending on China’s Twitter-like social media platform Sina Weibo. Dressed in traditional Chinese festival costumes, many netizens liken this version to a child walking through Beijing’s hutongs.
The question remains: How to get your own Bing Dwen Dwen when there are none left on store shelves? Chinese netizens scratched their heads and then continued to blow our minds with their DIY “Ju Dwen Dwen”--literally "orange Dwen Dwen." Bing appétit!
An orange "Bing Dwen Dwen" carefully crafted by Weibo blogger Luoluobu (Photo from Luoluobu's Weibo)
The DIY “Bing Dwen Dwens” crafted by Chinese netizens (Online photos)
Copyedited by Copyedited by Elsbeth van Paridon
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