After I joined the Golden Glow, an organization devoted to antique Christmas, it opened my eyes to a wide variety of collections that were intriguing, unusual and sometimes hard to find.
Collectors love the words hard-to-find, if there's a challenge, we're up for it. Explore these items that people collect, maybe it will spark an interest for you.
The showcase was filled with stories, advertisements and items that were truly dangerous in their time. Like bird lights that caught on fire, things that exploded and even Santa shown hawking scary things. This would be a great collection for someone with a sense of humor of the absurd and would take some time to put together, but that's the best part of collecting -- the search.
Christmas Smoking Paraphernalia
One cute, but small collection shown at a recent exhibit were Christmas ashtrays. Ceramic, glass and metal ashtrays all decorated in holiday motifs of Santas, snowmen and holly leaves filled a few shelves. Since that time, I've also seen Christmas lighters and match holders. And don't forget those amazing advertisements with smokers and cigarettes.
You don't have to be a smoker or even an ex-smoker to appreciate these or collect them, as they are a look into Christmas past of the 1950s and 60s.
Magazine AdsAdvertising has always had a strong following with collectors, either by product, topic or era. Christmas advertisements are great to collect. They're colorful, usually well done and of course feature favorite products from years gone-by.
It might be toys, think Lionel Trains, household items, clothing, smoking and/or liquor. Yes Virginia, there used to be magazine ads for cigarettes and smoking.
Most of these can be found for just a few dollars, except for the more unusual pieces. One hint might be to check out the November and December issues of magazine and cut out the ones that appeal to you (instead of buying individual ads).
The Vermont Country Store has reproduced these 1950 style candles and offers them for sale on their website. The price of these new candles is usually more than you would find the vintage pieces, but of course in a lot better condition.
Find out more:
Vintage Gurley Candles
Vermont Country Store Candles
Contemporary Novels and Mysteries
I like to pick up the older books found at book sales and flea markets, but for a start take a look at some of the current offerings.
Check Prices:Christmas Mysteries
The cookie trays shown are all vintage and antique, but there are numerous contemporary pieces available, often purchased for well under $10.
Collecting Cookie Trays
A Visit from St. Nicholas / Rudolph
Don't forget about the various versions of Rudolph, the classic story from Robert May. The early and first books are still affordable, albeit quite simple. Later, more lavishly illustrated copies can also be found.
Other Christmas books would be my favorite of The North Pole Express, along with hundreds of other stories and books.
Also see: A Visit from St. Nicholas (one of the originals)
Check Prices: A Visit from St. Nicholas