Vintage Christmas Ornaments And The Traditions That Make Them Unique

Christmas is just one of those festivals that bring the entire world together in a spirit of celebration, cheer, love and humanitarian values. Almost every country and every culture in the world celebrates this day in some or the other format. And these traditions have been around for centuries with many changes coming along to keep them in tandem with the current times but always keeping the core spirit of Christmas alive. Customs like the Christmas pickle ornament even have an air of mystery surrounding them but the core objective of each of them is simple – bringing the entire family together. And we all remember the memories that surround these simple traditions throughout our lives.

Many vintage Christmas ornaments can be considered to have had an effect on the way different cultures celebrate the festival over the last few centuries. Their impact has increased exponentially ever since worldwide communications and easy travel methods came into the picture. Let us look at some of these traditions and see where they actually came from.

The Christmas Tree

There are many legends which circulate about where the earliest Christmas tree was placed and decorated first. But one of the most verisimilitude versions says that the first tree was decorated at Christmas at Riga in Latvia, in 1510. And then in 1521, German people from the region of Alsace decorated a pine-tree like a Christmas tree. The earliest of these trees was decorated with edible ornaments like apples, nuts, candies and other sweets. The candy cane has actually originated from this format of Christmas tree decoration.

Intricate Christmas ornaments

Transformation of edible ornaments into handmade ones began in the 17th century. Germans used coloured paper, nutshells painted gold, and empty eggshells to make their first vintage Christmas ornaments. Then began the era of using precious metal to design the most beautiful and elegant ornaments to adorn Christmas trees. The use of porcelain and glass has also been in vogue for the purpose. Modern times have allowed people to use artificial snow and other decorations to make their trees look more beautiful than ever before.

The Christmas pickle ornament

In the Civil War, one wounded soldier was captured and put into prison in Andersonville, Georgia. He had been in the prison for many months and grew very weak and depressed. And one day the soldier figured to ask the warder for a common pickle. The warder took pity on the poor prisoner and granted his wish. As a result, the prisoner survived and lived on to tell the tale of how the pickle gave him the courage to live on and not lose hope. This story is considered to be the origination of the much celebrated Christmas pickle. Many people believe that the custom to adorn Christmas trees with this ornament actually began in Germany.

In the end, all that can be said is that, authentic German or not, the Christmas pickle tradition has been a part of the childhood memories of every American child. You can visit for more information on Christmas traditions.


Chamilla Williams is a historian and expert on the many ways people celebrate the festival of Christmas. She loves writing many interesting articles and blogs where she talks extensively about the many types and forms of Christmas traditions in practice around the world. Visit for all the information you need.

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