Good day, design friends! Peggi here. I’m back to share hearty December greetings and a renewed obsession with vintage Christmas ornaments. Before we begin, a confession. I am decorating a tree for the first time in… over 25 years (it’s a $2 thrifted, tabletop number, but still). Even though I currently own zero ornaments, I find their glittery gloriousness wildly irresistible. I found SO many exceptional pieces while preparing this post. The longer I searched, the more covetable examples I discovered. I have yet to decide how I will deck my own diminutive evergreen, but I’ve got ideas aplenty! Click through for more holiday inspiration, my relevant ruminations, and a spectacularly shimmery roundup!
While stunning and unique new ornaments can certainly be found, my heart simply adores vintage. Buying used items, of course, assists my attempts to avoid consumerism and waste. (Especially challenging in this season) I also appreciate the often high-quality materials and gorgeous patina. Mercury glass, crystal, porcelain, silver plate and brass add lasting beauty.
Although they might be more expensive, these well-loved pieces could grace trees for generations. And who can resist an item with history? Blast my darn romantic sensibilities, but I can’t help imagining scenes of Christmas trees past. I welcome the energy of these cherished decorations.
Click right on the images to be redirected to the source, or use the numbered links below to shop my finds.
01: waterford crystal snowflake // 02: crystal bell // 03: large mercury glass pinecone // 04: three gorham silver plate snowflakes // 05: danbury mint bell // 06: pewter peacock // 07: geometric danbury mint star // 08: pair of reed and barton bird ornaments // 09: mikasa crystal snowflake // 10: large mercury glass cone // 11: big glass acorn // 12: two golden glass // 13: large glass and mica pine cone // 14: six stamped metal stars // 15: mod danbury mint snowflake // 16: long mikasa crystal bell // 17: two gorham silver doves // 18: set of eight mercury glass birds // 19: pair of silver plate doves // 20: annual mma snowflake // 21: waterford crystal snowstar // 22: snowcapped acorn // 23: lenox annual bell // 24: gold-rimmed mikasa bell // 25: large pair of acrylic swans // 26: set of 6 filigree bells // 27: fantastical danbury mint snowflake //
Now to the roundup! For this collection, I limited my choices to a broader winter theme: snowflakes, bells, birds, and cones or acorns. This girl requires twinkle to get through winter darkness, so I don’t want Santas in case my decorations linger into late January (no shade if you do)! I also narrowed materials to metallics and crystal. Because sparkly. As for my top picks, this time I truly can’t decide. If funds and space were no object, I might go from zero trees to one in every room. Ha. Why don’t you tell me your favorites instead? Would any of these lovelies suit your current scheme?
FYI. Pay close attention to the numbered links. Although I’ve mostly pictured single ornaments, several listings are for multiples!
Since I’m asking questions, here’s another. How do you feel about themed trees? I treasure a theme. Naturally, I value the cohesiveness parameters provide. Look at the luscious silver extravaganza from Martha Stewart above. A sterling statement! As an indecisive magpie, I also relish the role of rules. Since you make them yourself, the edicts can be as broad or narrow as you wish. My first tree was clad in bells, gold and iridescence. I had a blast hunting for fitting ornaments! My recent finds have me seriously contemplating a snowflake tree. Wouldn’t all those crystal, silver and gold stunners be magical? How about a birds-only tree? The avian examples in the collage represent a fraction of those available. So many choices! Since my enthusiasm clearly benefits from guardrails, I think of a theme as an intentionality tool, as well. Something to ponder before I purchase. Team theme.
With their timeless aesthetic and nostalgic appeal, vintage ornaments beg to be collected! One advantage to acquiring pieces slowly? It takes the sting out of sometimes shocking price tags. At $50-$200 per crystal snowflake, the forecast at my house does not call for a blizzard. I can, however, justify the occasional splurge. Another benefit to collections? Simplified gifting! After all, not everyone possesses Sarah’s knack in this department. Once folks know that you’re a connoisseur though, they’ll be thrilled to bestow a perfect little extravagance. Win, win! The greatest facet of accumulating a trove of treasures…the hunt! Every thrift stop and FB Marketplace search becomes a quest. Numerous manufacturers understand this and create annual ornament series. In fact, 2022 marks the 50th year of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s star ornament like those featured in #20. Why not begin your own tradition?
That’s a wrap, friends. I’d love to know how you decorate for the holidays! Minimal? Woodsy? Traditional? Glam? Gimme all the details! Whether your tree is bedazzled with vintage silver, bestrewn with handmade reindeer, or you enjoy another custom entirely, I wish you all the loving warmth and sweet nostalgia of the season. Until next time.