Marilyn Treichel’s antique Christmas collection began when her husband and she purchased a box lot at an auction. Her $100 purchase contained paper and glass ornaments from the 1920’s and 1930’s. She bought books on Christmas antiques and eventually joined a group of other Christmas collectors, “The Golden Glow of Christmas Past”.
Marilyn and her husband made trips to the East Coast from their Wisconsin home every summer to hunt for Christmas collectibles. They searched along routes that were packed with antique shops in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire. The couple attended auctions and went to antique shows, including Brimfield. Marilyn also searched for Period furniture to fill her house on her trips east. It is a replica of a home from “Historic Deerfield” in Deerfield, Massachusetts.
Marilyn’s collection is focused on 1920’s and earlier Christmas items. She is especially fond of cotton and paper ornaments from the turn of the century. Some of the cotton ornaments look like Snow babies with children in winter clothes. Santa Claus and animals are other popular figures. She also collects Dresden ornaments which are embossed cardboard designs of birds, other animals, people, etc. Her husband looks for wire wrap Christmas ornaments. Glass ornaments and other Christmas decorations were tied together with wire to create larger ornaments.
Marilyn doesn’t just focus her collecting on ornaments. Among other things, she has some Santa “woodcutter” candy containers from 4 to 29 inches in height. They were produced in Germany around the turn of the century. Most depict Santa with a short coat and pants.
As with other antiques and collectibles, some of the more valuable items are being reproduced. Marilyn advises that you study books and learn as much as you can before you start to collect. She also recommends buying items at the Golden Glow of Christmas Past’s annual show. The group consists of 1,600 members internationally. Their conference and show is held in different venues around the country every July.
There is good news for those of you who have antique Christmas decorations that have been passed down through your families as well as long time collectors. Marilyn said that prices of antique Christmas items continue to rise. Prices have more than doubled, with ornaments that she used to be able to regularly buy for $10 now selling for over $25. Marilyn states that some early candy containers can sell for $6,000 to $7,000. With the prices currently so high she is more of a seller than a buyer now. I hope that all you are having a wonderful holiday season!
We continue to pickup some great items for our January 28th live antique estates auction. The latest is a French newspaper with a sketch on it signed by Pablo Picasso. Please keep following us on the web as we are planning some estate sales as well.
Contact us at: Wayne Tuiskula Auctioneer/Appraiser Central Mass Auctions for Antique Auctions, Estate Sales and Appraisal Services www.centralmassauctions.com (508-612- 6111), firstname.lastname@example.org