One of the big lures of antique hunting and ownership is the memories they help us recall and recreate. For most of us, special holiday moments with family and friends are among our warmest and most cherished memories. Somehow all of the reality of family fights, crying children, dry turkeys, unrequited gifts and Uncle Tony drinking too much quickly fade away, and all that’s left are the images of beautiful holiday spreads, stuffed stockings, tinsel on the mantle and the joyful sparkle in our children’s eyes.
What better way to relive those wonderful times and to pass them along to future generations than by decorating your home with nostalgic old memorabilia that has played a part in the memories of your own and others’ families? It’s no wonder that holiday collectibles are among the most sought after of all collectible categories. Even folks who collect no other antiques can be spotted hunting for their favorite old holiday accoutrements.
Christmas is king among collectors
Not surprisingly, Christmas decorations are among the most popular collectibles. Old glass balls and other tree ornaments are always in demand, but don’t forget items such as tree stands, song books, stockings, figurines and vintage wrapping paper. Old holiday cards and other ephemera are also in demand. Did you know that in the Victorian period Santa didn’t wear red? Cards with unusual depictions of Santa are especially desirable. Remember those kitschy tinsel trees, complete with rotating color-wheel lights? Those are hot among collectors, as are the cute, albeit tacky, animated figurines from the 60s.
Don’t forget about Halloween, Easter and all the other holidays
Of course, there are many other holidays, and each has its collectibles and collectors. Halloween items are in particularly high demand and can sometimes bring surprising sums for very early pieces that have remained in good condition. There are also collectors seeking elaborate and romantic old Valentine cards, Hanukkah menorahs and dreidels, Passover haggadahs, Easter baskets, bonnets and bunnies, Thanksgiving turkey items and so forth.
If it’s time to retire your accumulation of heirloom holiday decorations, rather than throwing them out, consider selling them to an antiques dealer. You’ll put a few bucks in your pocket and you’ll have the good feeling that comes from knowing that the objects that contributed to your family memories will go on to keep doing their magic for future generations.
All content published here is the copyrighted property of its author on behalf of the Rhode Island Antiques Mall and may not be reproduced without permission from the company.