Tips by Dr. Lori

Collectible Ornaments

by Dr. Lori Verderame
Collectible Ornaments

The joy of decorating our homes with cheerful symbols of the season first came into fashion in the early 1800s. Back then, most traditional holiday trees were adorned with ornaments and decorations like candies, sugar-coated nuts, and fruit slices. Ornaments were reserved for holiday trees or certain parts of the home. For instance, the ornaments that were found in the hearth were not the same ornaments found in the kitchen or on the holiday tree. Queen Victoria and her family continued the Germanic tradition of decorating a table top holiday tree with ornaments as her husband, Prince Albert introduced the tradition to England in the 1840s. In addition to the ornamental edibles, holiday branches and boughs supported hand-made ornaments, ribbons, and printed paper cut-outs.

Tabletop ornaments were of particular interest such as the snow globe. Snow globes were first introduced in France during the early 1800s as a successor to the glass paperweight. At the 1889 International Exposition held in Paris the snow globe got global attention as a souvenir item. The first snow gloves featured a model of the newly built Eiffel Tower inside and today, snow globes are popular collectibles of the holiday season. 

What to Look For

Ornaments come in many different forms, shapes, sizes, materials, and origins. Some of the most sought after ornaments are the 1950s and 1960s collectibles known as Shiny Brites and German mouth blown kugels. Ornaments that say they are "collectible" are typically not all that valuable in the marketplace. Look for good condition, look for strong materials, look for sets of ornaments that are in tact and are in their original box or packaging. Look for ornaments that reference a holiday or season. Historic objects that relate to holiday ornaments are important to retain in a collection. 

Get an online appraisal of your collectible ornaments from Dr. Lori.

Schedule a Dr. Lori Event

Dr. Lori events
Dr. Lori presents her popular Antiques Appraisal Comedy Show around the world at 150 shows a year entertaining audiences. Ask us how to book an event for you.

Dr. Lori's Blog

Dr. Lori reveals insider information and tips about the world of antiques. Subscribe here »
3 Tips to Spot Beanie Babies Value

3 Tips to Spot Beanie Babies Value

Are you confused about all the information you read about beanie babies and their value? Does a mistake or misspelling on a tag mean that you can get the most money when selling your beanie baby? Ph.D. Antiques Appraiser Dr. Lori is the expert who reveals the secrets on how to value your beanie babies. Learn what is fact, what are myths and the secret nobody tells you. You need to know this information if you want to sell your beanie babies for top value and make money.

Read More »