Updated: Sep 14
If you think back to your childhood Christmas celebrations, what do you remember? Laying under the tree, watching the antique Christmas ornaments dangle? Setting out specific dishes and tablecloths reserved only for Christmas Eve dinner? Maybe even the eclectic and colorful antique blow molds of Santa and his reindeer. Vintage Christmas décor is popular again, so luckily, you can recreate your past Christmases this year!
From the classic tinsel tree to beloved Shiny Brite ornaments, every vintage holiday item you can think of is just waiting to be found at your local antique mall. This year, skip the same-old string lights and deck the halls with vintage Christmas collectibles!
Why Does Vintage Christmas Décor Never Go Out of Style?
Vintage Christmas décor is always in style because, for many, the holidays are a time for nostalgia. For some families, vintage Christmas collectibles are a large part of their family traditions, from hanging Shiny Brite ornaments on the tree to setting out their favorite reindeer plates. For others, skipping modern decor and using antique Christmas ornaments, tinsel trees, and lights reminds them of a simpler time. Whatever the personal reason, the look of a vintage Christmas remains trendy year after year.
5 Inspirations for Decorating with Vintage Christmas Collectibles:
1. Make a table centerpiece by placing your vintage Shiny Brite ornaments in a glass bowl.
2. Set up a whimsical forest of ceramic Christmas trees on your windowsill.
3. Drape strands of tinsel to turn your Christmas tree into a tinsel tree for extra glam.
4. Set up vintage blow molds of holiday figures on your porch and front lawn for the neighborhood to enjoy.
5. Add vintage nutcrackers, antique Christmas ornaments, and holiday dolls to your bookshelves and mantles for the perfect festive accent.
What is a Tinsel Tree?
No vintage Christmas would be complete without a tinsel tree! When vintage lovers discuss tinsel trees, they refer to the popular 1950s tradition of sprucing up a Christmas tree with yards of sparkly, silver tinsel. In 17th-century Germany, they used real strands of silver to reflect the light that came from putting candles in the branches. When people realized that fire hazard, they switched to synthetic, affordable tinsel! If you're looking for the perfect vintage Christmas look, gather your favorite antique Christmas ornaments and give this sparkling tinsel tree trend a try.
Popular Vintage Christmas Collectibles
Whether you're rooting through your mother's attic for antique Christmas ornaments or browsing tree toppers at an antique mall, keep your eyes peeled for these beloved collectibles.
Top 3 Vintage Christmas Collectibles:
Shiny Brite ornaments
Department 56 Villages
Ceramic Christmas trees
Collect Colorful Shiny Brite Ornaments
Shiny Brite, known for their vibrant colors, sparkly accents, and unique shapes, has been around since 1930s Germany. Shiny Brite ornaments were all the rage in America in the 1950s, and these antique Christmas ornaments have been a sought-after collector's item for people worldwide ever since. The making of Shiny Brite ornaments is what makes them so unique to this day—the insides are coated in silver nitrate, ensuring they stay shiny year after year.
Nowadays, with the company shut down, some Shiny Brite ornaments are extremely valuable. The price of these antique Christmas ornaments can vary depending on its rarity, quality, and age. If you come across a set at a yard sale, grab them! Individual Shiny Brite ornaments can go for anywhere from $5 to $90—you may hit the jackpot and find a winner.
Create a Christmas Town with Department 56 Villages
Thanks to the creation of Department 56 in the '70s, many families worldwide look forward to the tradition of setting out their idealistic Christmas town every year. These hand-painted ceramic buildings are among the most sought-after Christmas collectibles, from churches to ice skating rinks.
If you have any of these adorable buildings, you likely have a valuable collection. Many buildings are priced at around $40, but certain homes, like the "Boss Shirley House," consistently sell for thousands of dollars. Hunting these homes down and researching their value is part of the fun for these avid Christmas collectible collectors.
Decorate with Vintage Ceramic Christmas Trees
Ceramic Christmas trees were one of the most loved holiday items in the 1970s. Each original tree was handcrafted, with tiny electric bulbs sticking out of each branch to mimic Christmas tree lights. Some may be glazed or finished with acrylic accents, while others feature snow! Every couple of years, the ceramic Christmas tree makes a comeback—but there's nothing better than finding an original Christmas collectible.
If you come across a ceramic Christmas tree in a basement storage box or at a flea market—hold on to it. The value tends to skyrocket around the holidays, where, depending on the ceramic Christmas tree's age, condition, and style, you can sell your vintage item for anything from $80 to $200!
Where to Find the Best Vintage Christmas Collectibles
If you're interested in collecting Christmas collectibles, you can start from the comfort of your own home! Whether you're perfecting your personal Christmas village or looking for antique Christmas ornaments for your tinsel tree, there are countless vendors waiting for you. Pick your niche and browse different online collecting forums, Etsy and eBay, to find valuable pieces to add to your home.
Take a stroll in your local antique mall to find multiple sellers and options all in one place. Certain vendors will have an entire collection of antique Christmas ornaments or ceramic Christmas trees, while others will have a wide stock of Christmas collectibles for you to sort through. Looking through each box, shelf, and bin is half the excitement of collecting vintage decor!
Selling Christmas Collectibles
Did you strike gold and find a collection of vintage ceramic Christmas trees at a yard sale? Or want to start a little side hustle for your Christmas collectible passion? Rent a booth at an antique mall near you, start an online business, or post on popular auctioneer websites to find your like-minded community of vintage Christmas lovers.
Buying your Christmas décor from a local antique store ensures you a unique and festive holiday home, from the antique Christmas ornaments to the stockings hung with care. Embrace the nostalgic feelings of the holidays with tinsel trees and timeless Shiny Brite ornaments. Visit our Algonquin, Melbourne, and Highland locations to discover your next Christmas collectible today.