To spread a little holiday cheer, I’m sharing my Santa Claus collection of figures, decor and tableware. Many were gifts, several are vintage, and others I made.
Dear hubby decorated the exterior of the house for Christmas, and has been helping me with the interior. Honestly, with my foot still in a walking boot, mostly I just point and say “please” and “thank you” a lot!
He’s been very patient, as I explain where my most treasured holiday decorations and dishes are stored. They’re spread across the basement, two floors and the attic; in cabinets, closets and boxes — even under beds!
Due to my limited mobility — and not being able to carry anything while I use a walker — I’ve had to scale back on decking the halls. Still, the house has a festive atmosphere, with a decorated mantle and live tree in the family room, and my Santa Claus collection prominently displayed throughout.
The best thing about my holiday decorations and tableware, aren’t the objects themselves, but the cherished memories and nostalgia they evoke.
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Ho, Ho, Ho Happiness
Among my Santa Claus collection is this gorgeous needlepoint pillow with burgundy velvet backing.
It sits on a chair next to the grand piano, where our sons play holiday classics every Christmas Eve. The first song each learned to play was a single finger version of “Up on the Housetop.” They were just five years old and taking Suzuki lessons. Now, their repertoire includes everything from classic carols, to music from Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker ballet, to modern day classics like Somewhere in My Memory from Home Alone.
I already have the Christmas books and sheet music sitting out on the piano. Do you or any members of your family play the piano?
To share my Santa Claus collection, I’ve borrowed from Clement Moore’s, A Visit from St. Nicholas. After all, it’s the lines and illustrations from the classic poem that have contributed most to how people envision St. Nick’s appearance.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care
Meanwhile, in the family room, four needlepoint stockings hang from the fireplace mantle.
Each of my son’s stockings feature Santa Claus’ merry face.
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there
I needlepointed one for each family member; when the boys were just infants. But, it took six to eight months to make one. Have you sewn, embroidered or needlepointed any holiday decorations or gifts?
I love how, every year, my now grown sons argue that their stocking is the best one of all, lol! Care to vote?
My mother did a beautiful job assembling and sewing them together. She used red corduroy fabric for the backing, and a festive green holly print to line all four.
A large silver bell is tied with a ribbon to the boys’ stockings. One Christmas Eve, Santa tiptoed into each of their bedrooms. He left a bell on the nightstands to discover in the morning. Each sat on a piece of beautiful vintage-style paper, with a note detailing which of Santa’s reindeer’s harnesses the bell came from — Comet and Donner.
One of my favorite Christmas Day memories is my eldest son running breathless into our bedroom, with the bell clutched in his hands; overwhelmed with joy.
Appropriately, all four stockings hang from the fireplace mantle by a golden reindeer. See the mantel and other reindeer theme holiday decor in, Easily Refresh & Update Christmas Wreaths. Yes Virginia, Debbee has multiple holiday theme collections!
With a little old driver so lively and quick
Last year, I gathered together many figures from my Santa Claus collection on the dining room table. Most of the photo’s below come from that Christmas Eve centerpiece.
For his first Christmas, R’s godparents gave him this adorable music ‘ box.’ It plays, “Santa Claus is Coming to Town,” as the sleigh and reindeer circle around, and in and out of the building.
After all this time — and some wear — I still place it on R’s nightstand in his old bedroom. One day, I hope it brings the same sense of magic and anticipation to his children.
I knew in a moment he must be St. Nick
Meanwhile, in youngest son’s bedroom is a set of nested Santa Claus figures. There are four in all in the Russian style, but only the outer one shown below.
Hubby brought the hand painted nesting set home from a business trip to Czechoslovakia. The Berlin Wall had only recently come down, and the country was one of the first to emerge as a democracy from behind the Iron Curtain.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot
Although designed as a tree topper, this elegant gold Santa Claus usually sits in the front entry hall.
He’s just too big for the Christmas tree in the living room. Plus, that spot is reserved for a vintage topper.
My dad bought the golden angel as a gift for mom. It was their first Christmas as a married couple.
So, she’s even older than yours truly lol!
In addition to the vintage and mercury ornaments on the living room tree, are another of my holiday collections.
You can see them in Peacock Ornaments Decorate Christmas Tree.
I even have a Santa hugging a peacock; a combination of two holiday collections, lol!
You can see the angel in Decorate with Vintage Christmas Treasures. Many fragile St. Nick ornaments also adorn the same tree.
That includes the Santa Claus ornament from hubby and my first Christmas.
And, the large glass ball our son painted for me as a gift.
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back
Hands down, the most cherished figure in my Santa Claus collection is this 1960’s era Napco floral container. My parents sent the holiday arrangement to me when I was in the hospital for appendicitis as a child.
Overflowing from his sack was a puppy made of white mums, with paws resting on a bed of holly.
Happily, I was released from the hospital that Christmas Eve. Ever since, I have treasured the Santa planter. Most years, I still fill his sack with fresh cut holly.
Several years ago I spotted this mini version at an antique store. Both are described as being decorated in “spaghetti” trim.
Right now, the two ceramic figures are in their normal spot on our bedroom dresser. But, last Christmas Eve, they decorated the table.
I grouped them with another vintage-style figure in my Santa Claus collection. He came from a post holiday sale at a favorite local florist.
You might remember it as the centerpiece on the Twas the Night Before Christmas Eve Table.
I styled the tablescape using red and white transfer plates. The Night Before Christmas pattern is made by Johnson Brothers.
Each piece in the pattern includes a line and illustration from the Clement Moore poem.
I paired the dishes with my great grandmother’s etched crystal, and vintage napkin rings from my Santa Claus collection of tableware.
Aren’t they cute? I found them on Etsy in their original box.
His eyes—how they twinkled! his dimples, how merry
Other vintage figures in the Santa Claus collection include two blow molds that light up.
Usually, I make a little vignette of the two at the bottom of the stairs in the basement entry from the garage.
About: Santa is 17 inches tall, and marked in raised plastic lettering around the plug hole, “Empire.” Empire made blow molds from the 1960’s until 1990. A search online of images for doesn’t generate any others like mine. All the red belted Santa’s are holding a wreath, bell or have a sack. I suspect mine is an older one from the 1960’s. I found it at an antique barn shop while Visiting Trax Farms at Christmastime.
They create a lovely, magical glow when plugged in.
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry
Also in our Santa Claus collection are handcrafted figures that are my husband’s favorites. This one is carved out of wood.
Each is totally unique, and were gifts from my brother-in-law and his wife. They frequent arts and crafts shows and I suspect the Santa’s were discovered on an outing.
Because of their smaller size, both figures work well in holiday vignettes around the house.
And the beard on his chin was as white as the snow
My mother made this jolly little guy, with fly away white beard, for my eldest. For our youngest, she made a cute elf in green with jingle bells on his stocking cap.
Sitting next to him is a hand painted on wood Santa in the shape of an egg. They put a smile on my face.
He had a broad face and a little round belly
This pair of Santa and elf are made of plaster, and coated with glitter that make them sparkle.
I usually pair them in vignettes with white bottle brush and silver tinsel trees.
Like many of the figures and decor in my Santa Claus collection, they were found at Old Allegheny or Trax Farm.
Take a virtual trip at Favorite Christmas Shop Kicks Off the Season. And, find more holiday idea and inspiration on a Visit to Trax Farms at Christmastime.
That shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly
Many years ago, this porcelain St. Nick doll was a gift from Sister A.
He has a music box hidden inside, and plays “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.”
Usually, I group him with vintage holiday tins full of Christmas cookies, biscotti, teas, coffee and hot chocolate fixings on the kitchen counter.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf
Also found on a post holiday sale at Old Allegheny, are these Santa plywood standups. They are about four feet tall. Each St. Nick looks like an illustration from a Victorian Christmas card.
Santa on skates stands in the upstairs hallway. A perfect fit!
Oh and how I love this Santa with the decorated tree! Positioned in front of the grandmother clock, he greets visitors in the front hallway. Doesn’t he make you feel holly jolly?
Which decoration in my Santa Claus collection do you like best?
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle
Finally, take a A Tour of the Magical North Pole to see Santa’s home. It’s downstairs in our Ski Lodge Theme Decor Family Game Room.
Unfortunately, I won’t be setting up the festive display this year. There’s just no way I could manage in the boot and using a walker. Even in a normal year, it’s a big job to put up and pack away all the Department 56 houses and accessories.
Hubby and I also had consider another factor in our holiday decorating — my son’s puppy. Bentley, a lab mix rescue, will be about four months old when we meet him. It’ll be the fast-growing and energetic pup’s first trip to Pittsburgh, and his first Christmas. We’re going to be under siege lol!
Santa Claus Brings Early Present
As I shared last year in, DIY Christmas Cocktail Ornament Balls, I suddenly and unexpectedly lost my Sweet Scottie Dog.
During an eight month search for a Scottish Terrier puppy, I experienced numerous disappointments and roadblocks. There’s a shortage of Scotties worldwide. As a result, many breeders will only sell puppies to people who contractually agree to show the dog and breed it afterwards.
It’s one of the reasons I decided to move forward and get the foot surgery over and done with.
But, yesterday Santa Scottie delivered what I wanted most for Christmas. On the anniversary of Fibber’s passing, a litter was born near Cleveland, Ohio. A little brindle boy who will be ready to come home in February after all my therapy is over!
So, I’m Preparing for a Puppy!
I’m leaning towards naming him Whiskey (short for Glenfiddich, a premium Scottish brand), but name ideas are welcome!
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”
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What a fun, festive Santa collection you have! I love each and every one. I know how hard it is to decorate when mobility is challenged and I also thank your matrimonial elf for rising to the occasion to help deck the halls. Wishing you a speedy recovery and a beautiful Christmas. When surrounded by such joy and festive decorations, I’m sure it will help your recovery no end!
Aww Jeanie, thanks so much for your lovely comments. I only its only “stuff”, but each is a touchstone to warm, wonderful memories and people I love — especially nice during this stressful season and being mostly couch-bound. I’m sorry you’ve struggled too. When I was growing up I loved Peanuts and Snoopy. Finding the saying, “Happiness is a Warm Puppy” particularly resonating.
Hello! I wondered if you knew any information about the Santa blow mold that you have. The one that is holding his beard and his belt. Also the belt is red. I’m trying to find more information/history on that piece. Thank you!
Hi Elizabeth! I can’t offer much in terms of specifics. Santa is 17 inches tall, and marked in raised plastic lettering around the plug hole, “Empire.” Empire made blow molds from the 1960’s until 1990. A search online of images for Empire blow mold Santa’s doesn’t generate any others like mine. All the red belted Santa’s are holding a wreath, bell or have a sack. I suspect mine is an older one from the 1960’s. I found it at an antique barn shop here in Pittsburgh. If you find out anything else, please let me know.
Merry Christmas to you and yours. Stay safe and healthy.
Thanks Mavis and to you too! I hate that we live so close to each other and how far away that is right now. Can’t wait to give you a big hug in person.
Debbee, I love the spaghetti ceramic Santas, both for their vintage appeal and your personal story of the planter. I snag those spaghetti ceramics whenever I can as a dealer. And I can tell you, thos blow molds are HOT commodities in the resell markets. We don’t personally buy and resell them, but dealers who can buy low can almost always sell high.
Glad your rehab is coming along, and news of your brindle sounds like something to really look forward to and encourage the hard work!
Oh I thought you might enjoy the spaghetti ceramics and blow molds Rita! It wasn’t until about 5 years ago that I even realized they were collectible. Use to be you’d find that stuff at Goodwill. To me, they are gateways to precious memories of my childhood. Do you have any holiday decorations passed down in your family?
Making slow, steady progress although PT takes big chunks out of the day and leaves me swollen and aching. That’s OK, I’m highly motivated, especially with a warm puppy to come! Wishing you a happy season Rita.
On the 1st Christmas in our new home a miniature schnauzer pup came to live with us. We wanted a name that reflected her German heritage and we named her Schnappsie after the word schnapps. (My grandparents would always use the word when offering a small libation to their guests.) The name stuck and seemed to resonate with her as she would always come to us when we called her using it. The following summer relatives came to visit; my uncle could not remember her name. While trying to help him remember I related that her name meant whisky in German. That did it he never forgot. Through the years he would always ask about Whiskey!
Oh Carolyn, my first dog when I was little was a schnauzer named, Whiskers! I have a picture of he and I having a pretend tea party sitting at my kid’s table and chairs. I didn’t realize schnapps was actually a form of whiskey. Cute story! My Scottie’s official name on his papers will likely be Wise’s Glenfiddich Dram.
You have a wonderful Santa collection. Thanks for sharing them with us I enjoyed this very much. A happy post!
Always enjoy your visits Cindy. During these stressful times, I think we all “need a little Christmas, right this very minute.” My mood improved enormously we brought out the decorations and Santa collection. Wishing you a happy and healthy season.
It was such fun to look at all the pieces in your marvelous Christmas Santa collection and hear the stories that went along with each. Christmas is the time of memories and favourite items bring back cherished thoughts of people and times in my life just as you write.
So lovely to read about the hand-made needlepoint stockings and the bell from Santa’s reindeer tradition. My childhood stocking was also handmade by my mother from felt with appliqued, embroidered and sequined Christmas shapes on the front…there was a bell tied with a ribbon below the hanging loop and since then I have put a bell on each and every stocking I have made. However the purpose of that bell was to notify my parents that my sister and I were up and looking in our stockings and at the gifts under the tree. Love your idea that they came from Santa’s reindeers’ harnesses!
So excited to hear that you will soon be welcoming a wonderful puppy into your heart and home…Whiskey is an adorable name and he will bring you much joy for years to come. A beautiful passing of love from one beloved pet to a soon-to-be received puppy.
Hope you continue to gain strength and mobility as the days pass. May you and yours be blessed with a memory filled Christmas season!
Alayne, I so enjoyed reading about your stocking and the true purpose of the bells. I never thought of theme as elf security, lol! The idea of the bells from reindeer harnesses was inspired by the book, The Polar Express. Thanks for you kind and sweet sentiments. All the best to you!
Hello again Debbee, had to laugh again about the jingle bell idea inspired by The Polar Express…since my childhood predates that book my parents definitely used the bell tied to our stockings as a form of alarm clock on Christmas morning. Also meant to comment on the dish set as it is also the one I love to use on Christmas Eve…must admit we both have very similar interests!
Another cute name for your soon-to-arrive puppy would be ‘Dundee’. Enjoy the days as they seem to speed up as we get closer to Christmas.
Oh we do like a lot of the same things! Those dishes are great because they look vintage but are practical — dishwasher & microwave safe. Appreciate the name suggestion. I’m making a list to discuss in a family meeting with our sons over Christmas.
Debbee, what fun seeing your lovely Santa collection! I agree that the best part are all the memories evoked as we display each one. I love my Santa collection as well– mostly newer Possible Dreams, but I do have the first Kurt Adler Santa, made in 1985 that holds the best memories because he was part of my children’s Christmas celebrations while they lived at home. I still put him out every year. I know you’ll be glad when that boot comes off. Hugs!
When my mom downsized and sorted out who got what Christmas decorations, I wanted mostly the old stuff from when I was a kid. The fancier collectibles didn’t hold the same memories. I love the PD Santa’s but have resisted purchasing anything new for a number of years due to maxing out on both display and storage space. I will be glad when the boot is off for good, probably around New Years.
That’s so cute that your sons still battle it out over Best Stocking!
Glad you were able to get some decorating done with your husband’s compassionate assistance. Our poor hubbies…they just dutifully pitch into make sure the halls are decked and we are happy!
Memories are the best. Unbreakable, long-lasting, and THE best of life’s gifts. Thanks for sharing your memories with all of us!
You have an amazing collection of Santas in so many different forms! Beyond the stockings and statuettes…you have really quite a few cool things!!!!!
Hoping you can ditch that walker soon! I still have two of them stored in the garage just waiting for the next spine surgery. I hope they are able to rust and rot in there!!!!!!!☺️
Speaking of holiday memories, the next thing I’m pulling out are all our old photo Christmas cards, pix with Santa, etc. I even have some of me and my sisters from days of ‘ol. And, I’m asking hubby to pull out the Christmas video tapes and see if we can play them through the TV as a surprise for the boys on Christmas Eve.
I am now full weight bearing with a boot and walker, and Thursday graduate to a cane. Monday I start to transition into a shoe! Let’s hope your walkers stay permanently in the garage! So glad to have you back with us in blogland Alycia!
I too was a Santa collector. The memories tell the stories of each one. Yours are so beautiful. Glad to hear you are doing well. Happy Holidays! Love ya, Auntie D.
So nice of you to “visit”, just wish it could be in person. Seems like forever ago! In the big scheme of things, I am blessed. Light at the end of the tunnel on my foot and now I have the repairs done. And, I have a Scottie puppy to look forward to. Hugs to you and Ralph, with wishes for a happy and healthy holiday season.
Wow, you have a great collection and a hubby that is a saint. LOL. I really wouldn’t want mine digging in all those places I have stuff hidden…grins. LOVE your hallway Santa, he is Super and what a great place to put him! Happy Holidays, ho ho ho! Sandi
Yeah, well, hubby does seem to just charge right in Sandra! When it comes to fragile items and tableware, I have to nicely remind him to please be oh so careful. And, I sheepishly had to ask for some things in rather odd storage places lol! If he rolled his eyes, I didn’t catch it! A most happy and healthy holiday season to you too.
Debbee, kudos to your husband for helping. I doubt I could talk my husband into being my elf. Like you, I have lots of Santa figures from through the years. I didn’t put all out this year, but its festive all the same. Love the needlepoint pillow! Hope your foot is back to normal soon. Take care and merry, merry!
Well Sarah, I think it helped that I began the discussion with how much I planned to cutback this year on decorating. He was surprised! And, I asked for his input on what he really wanted most (he loves the Salvation Army Byer’s Carolers and still wanted a live tree). Fortunately, I’m progressing enough that I’ll bake cookies this weekend and will help cooking for Christmas. A most happy holiday to you too!
How is it I did not know you had SO many Santas, sistah?
Probably because it’s been years and years since you’ve been here for Christmas! I’ve accumulated it all over decades. But, I’ve stopped, if for no other reason than there’s simply no more display or storage space lol!
First, good to hear you are progressing after surgery. Kudos for your husband helping.
Love the Santa collection and the stories about each.
I have to limit my visits to GoodWill because it’s upsetting to see a lifetime of collections donated and often chipped, broken, and separated. I feel compelled to bring them home “to save them”
Good news about a puppy arriving for Valentine’s Day !
Merry Christmas to you and your family. Thanks for bringing us cheer in your blog.
As always, thanks for reading along with me Myrna. Know what you mean about GW. I see things and know they have a history and mattered to someone. With so much stuff myself, I can’t possibly expect my family to take it all. Happily, my sons are really into Christmas, and love all the vintage/family decorations, stockings, nutcrackers, NP village, and many of the holiday decor they remember growing up. Now that our youngest has a home, I plan to pass a few things along for next year.
With a puppy to come, I’ve also gotten hubby to pull out some of my Scottie decorations. Last year, it was difficult looking at it after Fibber died. In fact, right now I’m wearing my Scottie dog red sweater and matching socks!
Hi Debbee! I sure enjoyed your Santa Clause journey! I loved reading about the needlepoint stockings your mom made and how you did the same for your kids. The silver bell story is the best! I wish I had given my kids a homemade needlepoint stocking and a bell from Santa’s reindeer! How fun that must have been for them! I’m sorry you are down with crutches and a boot, but I guess this year is the time to do it! Hope you have a complete and fast recovery! Wishing you a very Merry Christmas! Hugs, Tee @ Teediddlydee
Tiffany, thanks so much for taking the time to visit! The bell idea was inspired by the book, The Polar Bear Express. When we have grandkids, the bells will have to come from one of Santa’s other reindeer harnesses lol! The surgery was elective, and as you said, if I needed to get it done (and I’d have to evidentially anyway) now was the time. And, I’ll be rewarded when I’m all healed to welcome my new Scottie puppy come February! A most happy and healthy holiday to you too Tee.
Debbee, I so enjoyed reading this post and seeing all of your Santa figures and decor. What special memories that all must hold for your family. I’ve been collecting Santa figurines and ornaments for years and they always bring great memories to me. It’s wonderful that you have found a Scottie to bring home soon. I hope your recuperation time goes well. Merry Christmas!
Thanks for stopping in for a visit Beverly, especially during this busy time of year. It’s a good to hold onto and cherish past Christmases, during this trying period. Although I cut way back on decorating this year (due to my foot), I purposely chose those things that held the dearest memories. And, with a puppy to look forward to, I also brought things from my Scottie collection. With my Sistah B’s family and mom in Charleston, maybe sometime you and I will have the opportunity to meet in person? To a better year ahead!
Wow-that’s quite a lot of Santas lol. Seriously it’s a wonderful collection filled with great memories. Congrats on the puppy! And thanks for sharing at Vintage Charm. xo Kathleen
Thanks for visiting during this busy time of year Kathleen. Thought you’d especially enjoy the vintage Lefton Santa Claus planters and blow molds. Merry Christmas!
So many things to comment on! Awesome Santa collection. Glad you are getting a new puppy–but do you really want to be looking out the back door screaming for “Whiskey!” Whiskers, maybe? I like the name Dundee! Love those dishes. Glad your therapy is progressing. Hugs to hubby for being such an understanding helper. My Santa collection is mostly dollhouse sized as SOMEDAY, I want a Santa’s workshop with all the Santas of the world (many are International) coming to pick up their toys! Heaven only knows where I would put them! Merry Christmas to you and yours!
Hope you had a very merry Christmas Kathy! You dollhouse size collection sounds magical and great fun to acquire over time. I am rethinking “Whiskey” as short for Glenfiddich. My puppy opened it’s eyes in time for Christmas and the pictures were like receiving a virtual present. So happy to be in shoes right now and walking, doing stairs. The foot does tend to get swollen and the ankle gets fatigued, but every day gets better — so long as I don’t overdo.
Congratulations Debbee, you are being featured at the next Friday with Friends link party! Your Santa collections are just so cute that I had to include them as a feature. Thanks for participating, and a happy New Year.
Rachelle what a lovely surprise, thank you! I guess Santa Claus is still in town lol! We only took down the live tree today, in order to hold onto the wonderful feeling of Christmas. Thanks for hosting this fun new link party. I look forward to hopping with you over the year ahead.
What a beautiful collection.
Thanks so much! I can’t wait to pull everything out and decorate next weekend — ho, ho, ho!