The one thing that excites me when we start decorating the house for Christmas is bringing out my nutcrackers and displaying them in our home. I’ve changed where I put them every year but I think this year they are standing in the perfect place – our new dining room console. I was so excited for this display that I even created an Instagram Reels post. And then I decided my Christmas nutcrackers need their own blog post…just like my Eiffel Tower themed Christmas tree!
I think I have a problem….a festive problem, that is…of collecting nutcrackers to add to my Christmas home decor. I never thought much about Christmas nutcrackers until one Christmas or the first Christmas that I visited Charlie’s mom’s house while we were dating. I was blown away by her collection and loved the way she displayed them. Of course, I started noticing nutcrackers all over the place shortly thereafter.
I was so inspired by my future mother-in-law’s nutcracker collection that I decided to start my own. So, for our first Christmas as a married couple, I got my first few nutcrackers. A few years later, I came across a floral/gift shop at The Drake Hotel – Mangel Florist – when we were there to see the hotel’s holiday decorations and train set and ended up purchasing some of my favorites there. While there, the owner gave me some information on the types of nutcrackers they sell and who they source their nutcrackers from. I did not know how some nutcrackers can cost so much because some are handmade or some come from Germany. I was intrigued….and obsessed!
I’m not a nutcracker expert, but something I do know is that nutcracker dolls or Christmas nutcrackers originated from Germany. “According to German folklore, nutcrackers we given as keepsakes to bring luck to the family and protect the home. It is said that they represent strength and power and watches over the family keeping evil spirits and danger away.” (Source: here). The popularity of the Christmas nutcracker came from the ballet, “The Nutcracker”.
Nowadays, nutcrackers are available to purchase just about any where at very affordable prices and come in different shapes and sizes and designs (and even characters). In order for me not to go crazy and have hundreds of them around the house or in storage, I’ve decided to only collect ones that are somewhat rare or “vintage”. I really hope to make my collection a very unique one and something I can pass down to my kids and their kids.
A few differences that I’ve noticed or can differentiate between a good quality nutcracker and mass manufactured one is the wood grain on the nutcracker face and the intricate details on the nutcrackers’ uniform. Again…I’m not an expert, so I could be wrong.
But if you are not a nutcracker nut like me but would like to add a few nutcrackers to your Christmas decor for fun, I’m sharing where you can get cute and traditional ones that won’t break the bank! My advice for anyone wanting to start a collection…don’t go crazy and buy then all at once. Collect the ones that catch your eye or stick to a theme if you have to because there will always be cool looking nutcrackers coming every year! The fun part is finding ones you like and treasure.