Have yourself a merry little Christmas with vintage Santa collectibles.
When Christmas comes we like to pick a theme for our décor, and this year we both decided to do Santas to the max. We wanted Saint Nick in all shapes and sizes in every room of the house. So, where did we go to find a huge variety of Kris Kringles at affordable prices? The flea market, of course! Our local antique faire has 37 rows of booths with over 800 dealers, so we knew we’d find enough jolly old elves for both of us.
Making A List And Checking It Twice
We couldn’t miss the gigantic lawn Santa that greeted us near the front gate. He was the blow-molded kind we had when we were kids. We thought he would be wonderful on a front porch spreading Christmas cheer. Kitty found a Santa nutcracker to stand sentinel over a bowl of nuts. Jennifer passed on the nutcrackers in favor of some very serious-looking Father Christmas figures. The gal in the booth told us they are called “Belsnickels.” The authentic German ones from the turn of the century can cost $1000, but hers were reproductions that ranged from $10 to $30. Jennifer bought two, one red and one orange, for the niche in her hallway.
Dashing Through The Flea Market
Jennifer was on the hunt for special Santas to showcase in her shadowbox table. (She swaps out what’s inside for each season.) Kitty held up a Santa helicopter tin toy, but we agreed it would be more fun on a mantle as a conversation piece.
Then we found a vinyl 45rpm record of “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” in a colorful a sleeve. The vendor was asking $15, but our friend Margaret pointed out that the record had “29 cents” printed on the cover (which cracked everybody up!), and she got the price down to $12.
To The North Pole
We found lots of little Santas to tuck into bookshelves and windowsills. Kitty even found a pair of real mice dressed up as Mr. and Mrs. Claus to feature in a bell jar display. A guy wearing a striped elf hat had dozens of plastic Santas that were originally candy containers, but Jennifer was hoping for figurines with a more old-fashioned look to go with her antique Christmas village. One stall over, we spotted a bunch of Kris Kringles, all with fluffy cotton beards and red felt suits. She selected a tall one and three short ones and got a deal for the lot. She must have been on his “Nice” list!
After lunch, we ran across a collection of vintage Coca-Cola advertisements featuring Old Saint Nick. It turns out Santa has been the official winter spokesman for Coke since the 1930s. No wonder he’s so fat! We ended the day on a high note when a cute plastic Santa waved us over. He was riding a white reindeer and was a lamp to boot! Plus the vendor had one for each of us. Definitely the find of the day.
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