This year Christmas feels like a real crescendo for me—because I’ve been working on Christmas all year long. I’ve just written a book called A Very Vintage Christmas. It will be out in time for next holiday season. In it, I chronicle about 150 years of Christmas artifacts and about 40 years of my own personal collecting.
Writing the book has truly been a labor of love, and I’m excited to share it with everyone. That said, I’m so grateful most of the work is behind me now. I’ve had many photo shoots and video shoots to create the best possible content in and around the book.
With all this flurry of activity, I haven’t really stopped to enjoy Christmas. I’m so very grateful that I have the opportunity to do that now. I’ve still got shopping to do, cards to write and gifts to wrap…but that’s all part of the fun.
For me, Christmas is a very magical time. It is a great opportunity to get in touch with my inner child. It’s also a perfect time to contemplate the year that’s past and to begin to make plans for next year.
I’m grateful that I can do this under a Christmas tree that represents so many years of my collecting–with so many vintage ornaments that meant so much to other people before I owned them. One of the reasons I love collecting vintage Christmas ornaments is that they were all very special at one point in time to someone else, and now I am the curator and caretaker for them. One day they will be passed on to someone else.
My own collecting craze began when my father gave me a box of ornaments when I was just a young boy and said to me “it’s time you started collecting something.” Well my dad lit the fire and now I hold my Christmas torch high.
No matter how many ornaments on my tree or how many decorations in my house, the bottom line is that adding vintage touches to Christmas really honors the past and keeps it alive today. It helps me remember Christmases past and those who have passed in a way that surrounds me with comfort and joy.
This sweet sentimentality is exemplified in a bowl on my coffee table. In it, I have nestled greens and berries, wherein I placed an ornament I made when I was a young boy. It reads “May The True Meaning of Christmas Dwell in Your Heart All Year Through.” Next to it is a new glass ornament in the shape of a cardinal—the bird that always reminds me of my grandmother. My dear friend Sharon gave it to me. To the far left, I placed a clementine I adorned with cloves, which was something my Mom still does to this day. The aroma is wonderful and I love keeping the tradition alive. There’s a lot of love in that bowl. And that’s what Christmas is all about.
Finding Christmas… No matter how you celebrate this year, I wish you a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
A Very Vintage Christmas is available for pre-order on Amazon now: http://www.amazon.com/Very-Vintage-Christmas-Collecting-Celebrating/dp/1493022148/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1450554366&sr=8-2&keywords=a+very+vintage+christmas
photos by Ethan David Kent