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Putting Away Christmas…

…is always a slightly melancholy endeavor.
Packed away in a little brown box with my grandmother’s name and address, was a treasure that I forgot to display this past year!

Memories of carefully getting this tiny angel band out each season for my grandmother came back to my mind.  These miniatures were a gift from her sister to my father, when he was eight years old!  Each year, they would stand on a small mirror, placed atop the piano in the “sun room”.
Their hand-painted faces are so sweet.  Their mellow colors are so pleasing to my eyes!  Each musician holds a tiny instrument.  Chipped and faded, they become more fascinating with the passage of time.
I felt sure this band was of German origin.  Since I just returned from a visit to Munich, I’m sorry I didn’t look more closely into the one of the many craft booths displaying painted wooden objects of all shapes, sizes and color!
There are numerous websites offering angels that are similar to these vintage cherubs.  However, I have been unable to locate and identify their exact origin…

Taken from Erzgebirgische Volkskunst – Popular Arts and Crafts from the Erzgebirge Mountains:

“The popular arts and crafts from the Erzgebirge mountains have been in the hearts of many people from many countries because of their great variety. It began with the miners’ carving, went on to the making of bobbin-lace, and then coming onto the making of wooden toys. But most popular are the arts and crafts manufactured for Christmas which made the Erzgebirge region well-known as a “Christmas Country”. Their basis was the miners’ working and living environment which gave Christmas the sense of a “festival of light”. The pyramids, “Schwibbogen“, angel and miner candlesticks, made a special contribution to that. But the smokers and nutcrackers also gave Christmas in the Erzgebirge mountains a unique character. They all belong to the typical arts and crafts for Christmas.


Being the product of craftsmen and artists they are not only for Christmas decoration. They should not only be used for people’s enjoyment, but rather it should also show the heritage of their creation and development. It was the social and economical influence that changed the form of the crafts, not tradition. There were important changes in content, design, and function of the arts and crafts. The responsibility of our cultural heritage demands to compare the results of the history to the present time and to combine the best parts for creating new items showing our feeling for tradition. Let us not only show the tradition of the arts and crafts but also do all the best for preserving and developing them, and integrating them in our life.”

There are many more angel interpretations available, each with the individual characteristics of the original workshop :

Eisenach - Thüringen - GermanyImage by Ela2007 via Flickr
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  • Anonymous January 10, 2010, 8:56 pm

    Well written article and sentiment is appreciated. The little angel band is a treasure. Enjoy it and pass it down..

  • Kelley January 10, 2010, 10:57 pm

    You always loved those! Were they from Aunt Evelyn? I didnt know that. Of course, I had Dad's paper manger scene on my mantel this year.

  • Kim January 11, 2010, 1:40 am

    Yes, these angels bring me more pleasure than my Kindle! Now, imagine that!! …if you can! 🙂

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