How much are ceramic christmas trees worth

Are vintage ceramic Christmas trees worth a lot of money?

Remember ceramic Christmas trees?

They were huge in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, and they were basically the perfect, no-mess Christmas decoration: they fit on a tabletop or mantle, they had cute, twinkly lights, and some of them even spun around and played music.

“Everyone who took a ceramics class and celebrated Christmas made one of these trees,” vintage lifestyle expert Bob Richter told TODAY Home. “People put them on top of the television, back when the TV was a piece of furniture.”

This 1978 ceramic tree was on sale last December on eBay for $245. At that time of year, that price is not surprising, Richter says.eBay

Ceramic Christmas trees pretty much went out of style by the ‘80s, but people held onto them and, today, the retro decorations are making a comeback.

Perhaps feeling nostalgic for the holidays their youth, people are willing to pay hundreds of dollars on sites like eBay for vintage ceramic Christmas trees. One vintage tree recently sold for $100 on eBay, another for $149, and another for $218. (And closer to the holiday season, the trees can fetch even higher prices on the auction site.)

So if you have a ceramic tree collecting dust in your attic, and it doesn’t hold any sentimental value, it could be a nice opportunity to make a little extra holiday cash later this year.

This musical tree from the '70s was listed for $144 on eBay last year.eBay

It's definitely best to hold onto them until closer to the holiday season, according to Richter.

“The truth of the matter is, they’re not incredibly valuable at other times of the year," he said.

Richter, the author of “A Very Vintage Christmas,” recommends selling them on eBay with a three-day listing and including an incentive like "Get in time for Christmas" in the title.

Around the holidays, vintage ceramic trees could fetch a few hundred dollars, depending on the type and condition. Last year, Richter recalls selling multiple vintage ceramic trees for between $100 and $200 each.

Ceramic trees may have passed their heyday, but new ones are still in production around the holidays. This new, white ceramic tree was available on Amazon in December for $38.Amazon

Musical trees tend to be more valuable, he says, as well as very large very small ones. And as when selling anything online, the photos make a big difference.

“People don’t like buying something that’s being held by a hand that has dirty fingernails or if there’s a mess in the background,” he said.

If you’re interested in selling vintage ceramic trees, Richter recommends stocking up now in the summer when there’s a low demand.

This 9-inch tree was available new on Amazon for $19 last December.Amazon

“I buy holiday items off-season in July, when you’re sweating at a flea market, because you can get those trees for $10 and $20,” he said. “But at this time of the year, everybody wants one. So even at flea markets the prices are much higher.”

Richter says ceramic trees have become more popular recently because the younger generation is feeling nostalgic for the ones they had at home as kids.

“At the holidays everybody wants one because it reminds them of the past. And it’s a recent thing within the past couple of years,” he said. “Everybody’s like, ‘Oh, my mom had this, my aunt had this, so I want one.’ … Basically, you’re buying nostalgia. You’re buying the memory.”

This musical tree from 1977 was listed on eBay last December for $99. eBay

And for that reason, Richter says that while there’s nothing wrong with selling ceramic Christmas trees, it might be worth hanging onto them for sentimental reasons.

“The truth of the matter is, I think it’s great to turn them into cash, and it’s also great to bring them down and plug them in and use them, and tell a story of your grandmother or your aunt or your mother or whoever it was who had them in the first place, because I think that’s the true value,” he said. “It has emotional value, and that has gossamer wings.”

This article was originally published Dec. 10, 2018.

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Advantages of ceramic Christmas ornaments

Natural, ecological and beautiful are always in fashion. But authenticity has been added to modern trends. Today, products that carry authentic features and are a kind of bridge between the past and the future are very popular. It is to this category of goods that ceramic Christmas tree decorations belong. The Yaroslavl manufactory has picked up and, to a certain extent, created this trend and is confidently on top of it.

What kind of Christmas tree toys are there

There is not a single person in our country who would not hold Christmas tree toys in his hands and put them on shaggy thorny branches with trepidation. Therefore, it is no secret that toys are most often made of glass. This was the case several centuries ago.

They also made toys out of wood, cloth and paper. It was a special chic to wrap a nut or cookie in shiny foil paper. Many in kindergarten or elementary school cut out cardboard toys themselves, painted them and hung them on the Christmas tree. The same - cardboard - toys were produced in the factory version. Flashlights, garlands, flags…

But there has always been a ceramic toy.

Mankind discovered the possibilities of clay at the dawn of civilization. Potters created plates, cups, jugs and bowls, and their wives and children shaped clay toys from the leftovers for fun and for sale. When the technology of roasting appeared, the production of toys reached a new level. Now they have become strong, bright and even more beautiful.

Modern technology has advanced a lot, but the basic skills have not changed. Today, Christmas decorations are also made by hand using special forms, painted, glazed and fired in ovens.

Why do people choose ceramics?

First of all, ceramics are chosen for their exclusivity. Factory stamping will never compare to handmade. There can be a dozen identical at first glance figures in the store, which will differ in details, because hand-painting allows you to add nuances to absolutely every product.

Thanks to the majolica technology, the toys are sparkling, which is very important for a Christmas tree decoration. In addition, the inside of the toy is hollow, which means it is light. You can hang at least every branch - the tree will withstand their weight!

Masters choose a variety of topics for making toys. They can be folk or modern primordially Russian, or embody the motives of other countries and peoples. There are no limits - everything depends only on the imagination of the master.

Where to buy ceramic Christmas decorations

The possibilities of the Internet today blur the boundaries and expand opportunities. A resident of the Far North or the Far East can order the delivery of toys from Yaroslavl and decorate his Christmas tree with the most beautiful toys in the world.

All products are made from natural clay. Products are absolutely safe for children and for cats who love to play with Christmas tree decorations.

Plus, toy sets make a great gift. The breadth of choice will allow you to be unique and not repeat yourself, even if you purchase gifts for one family. The design is so diverse that you can easily pick up themed kits for:

  • musicians;
  • motorists;
  • gardeners;
  • animal and bird lovers;
  • mushroom pickers and others.

Moreover, toys will shock not only children, but also adults. Amazing detailing, accurate rendering of all elements, interesting plots, bright colors, glitter of glaze - how can anyone remain indifferent, especially on the eve of the New Year holidays?

Yaroslavl craftsmen embody a variety of ideas. They make both simple balls for the Christmas tree, and original figurines that you will not find anywhere else in Russia.

Plus, there is a belief that clay, being a “living” material, very quickly absorbs emotions and moods and is able to transmit them to others. In ancient times, potters were forbidden to sit down to work, if negative thoughts were spinning in their heads, the mood should have been only good. Such a belief still exists, and therefore Yaroslavl toys are a solid positive.

Overview of Christmas decorations - how to choose which ones are

A little more - and the chiming clock will announce the New Year. A little more - and the pre-holiday fuss will begin, the streets will be filled with Christmas tree bazaars. New Year!!!! Olivier, tangerines, "Irony of Fate" and ... of course, the main culprit is the beautiful Christmas tree, decorated with bright toys, shiny tinsel and shining rain.

It is they who turn a green tree into a fairy tale, bring an unforgettable mood. This holiday evokes forgotten bright childhood memories even among serious business people.

Christmas toys - origin and history

Before the New Year, all the counters are strewn with Christmas decorations, garlands and other festive tinsel. It has become so commonplace that few people think about the history of the New Year's toy, and why we traditionally decorate this coniferous tree every year.

Germany became the birthplace of this wonderful tradition in the Middle Ages. From time immemorial, the Germans considered spruce a sacred tree, a symbol of immortality. From year to year, on the days of the winter solstice, they decorated their houses with spruce branches and believed that the good spirits of the forest inhabited them.

Since the 16th century, spruce has become a symbol of Christian Christmas. In Germany and other European countries, it has become a tradition to put a decorated coniferous tree in the house. At first it was apples and unleavened waffles. The apple symbolized the forbidden fruit in the Gardens of Eden, and the wafers - bread (muffin) during the sacrament, symbolizing the body of Christ.

Later, nuts wrapped in multi-colored paper, painted gingerbread and other sweets, fruits, wooden and cardboard figures appeared on the branches. Candles were also attached to the branches - a symbol of holiness and purity. The top was crowned with a "Bethlehem" star.

In the 18th century, spruce began to be decorated with gilded cones, straw stars and angels.

The first Christmas decorations began to be produced in the German town of Lausch in a small glass-blowing artel, which produced various glass household utensils. Glass balls - the prototype of modern toys - were made in 1848. To give a mirror shine, inside they were covered with a thin layer of lead. Until the 20th century, German glassblowers were monopolists in the manufacture of Christmas decorations and exported them to other countries.

History of New Year's toys in Russia

In Russia, Christmas decorations for the New Year tree were brought by the reforms of Peter the Great. The first Christmas tree decorated with real toys, candles and garlands was installed in St. Petersburg in 1852. From that moment on, decorating a Christmas tree for Christmas has become very fashionable.

But not everyone could afford glass jewelry from Germany. An alternative to expensive glass decorations were toys made of cotton wool and cardboard (papier-mâché). You could buy them, or you could make your own. Around Christmas, many women's magazines revealed to their readers the secrets of this needlework.

An interesting fact is that until the beginning of the 20th century, decorations were hung on spruce so tightly that there was literally no free space left on it.

Factory production of Christmas tree decorations was first established in Russia during the First World War at the glass factory of the Menshikov princes, where, in addition to pharmaceutical vials and other glass products, balls and beads began to be blown.

Toys of the Soviet era

Times, people and fashion change, and the decoration of the forest beauty changes with them. At 1925 in the Soviet Union, Christmas holidays were banned, and with them the New Year tree and the most fun holiday disappeared for several years. But since the 30s of the last century, the fragrant guest from the forest again took its place of honor in every home, and now the angels were replaced by the Red Guards and pioneers, and the Bethlehem star was replaced by a red five-pointed proletarian symbol.

Cute toys of the Soviet era on clothespins and strings - nostalgia. In many families, they have been kept for more than half a century and passed down from generation to generation: colorful balls, houses with frosted roofs, cones and bells, shiny icicles, cats, squirrels, parsley and clowns, derezhables and airplanes ... you can’t count everything.

After the release of the film "Carnival Night", a glass clock appeared, the hands of which indicate five minutes before the chiming clock. And after Yuri Gagarin's flight into space, rockets and astronauts flooded the New Year's Eve counters.

The film "Circus" with Lyubov Orlova in the title role presented cheerful clowns, trained dogs and acrobats. And polar explorers and polar bears dotted the Soviet Christmas trees after the Papanin's conquest of the North Pole.

During the Great Patriotic War, the production of Christmas decorations continued. The festive outfit of "military" Christmas trees is soldiers, planes, tanks, Katyushas. On New Year's posters and postcards, even Santa Claus beat the Nazis ...

An elegant Christmas tree for the New Year in wartime reminded of peaceful times and inspired hope for an early victory.

During the post-war period, several factories for the production of Christmas decorations were opened in the country at once. The novelties of those years are decorations on clothespins and miniature toys for artificial baby Christmas trees. Corn - "Queen of the Fields", sparkled on the Christmas trees in the Khrushchev 60s. It is rare that someone does not store at least one glass corn somewhere.

At the same time, the first Christmas tree garlands appeared - small multi-colored light bulbs or balls on an electric wire.

In the 1970s and 80s, the “rain” made of colored foil became very popular, as well as fluffy multi-colored tinsel - orange, red, golden ... This beauty was sometimes so carried away that the decorations were practically invisible.

Modern Christmas ornaments

Toys for the Christmas tree today are so diverse that finding yourself among the sparkling, iridescent multicolor, there is a desire to buy everything - and more!

Christmas balls

It would seem that the most unpretentious toy, but in terms of popularity, variety of assortment, sizes, materials, breaks all records among jewelry. The unique play of light of glass balls makes them look like a real jewel. Different colors, plain and painted with bright colors, shiny and matte, with a mirror finish - they look very elegant on a festive tree.

Plastic and acrylic balls are in no way inferior to glass. Thanks to modern technologies, truly charming products are made from polymer - matte, with a glossy sheen, shining with sparkles and beads, with unique winter landscapes. And yet - they do not fight, this is especially true if you are decorating a Christmas tree with your children. Packed in transparent plastic or cardboard boxes, they will be the best New Year's outfit for a forest guest.


On the eve of the New Year holiday, all kinds of figurines made of glass and plastic, from modest plain ones to luxurious unique models, flooded the shops. Heroes from modern fairy tales and cartoons of past years, compositions with figurines of Santa Claus and other characters just ask for green branches, figurines inside a glass sphere are in great demand. On this wonderful holiday, not only the Christmas tree, but your entire apartment, the figures of Santa Claus and the Snow Maiden, familiar from childhood, will be decorated. Snowmen, forest gnomes, Santa Claus with deer will perfectly fit on shelves and window sills.

Items that evoke associations with winter look original and very interesting, for example, wooden sledges or plastic skates on a Christmas tree. Notes of romance will bring flowers or butterflies from fabric on a clip to the composition.

Do you want to add something unusual? Decorate the Christmas tree with figurines of birds, deer and other inhabitants of the forest.


It's like a cherry on the cake - the crown of the New Year's creation. Traditional stars or cones are still pleasing to the eye. But a truly modern solution would be a woven wire top. It looks original, beautifully graceful curves add grace to the whole tree.

Christmas traditional toys from different countries

In Sweden in the old days, and even now, straw decorations are very popular - balls, stars, gnomes. In the Scandinavian countries, you will definitely see a Christmas straw goat near the Christmas tree.

In Germany, multi-colored gingerbread men, figurines of fairy-tale characters, swing on green branches. But the favorite decoration is the nutcracker.

The top of the American spruce is invariably crowned with an angel figurine. In England, according to tradition, mistletoe branches are hung in houses. And in Spain - the sweetest and most delicious decorations.

The Austrians believe that porcelain pigs on branches will attract wealth and success in the new year.

French Christmas trees are full of Faberge egg-style toys, and in Denmark, snowflakes have replaced paper hearts made of white and red paper.

In Japan, hand-embroidered temari balls are especially popular. Small dolls, multi-colored national lanterns, origami and all kinds of colored fans look touching.

The Chinese are happy to hang beautiful pendants on the New Year tree with wishes for the well-being of their family, relatives and friends.

Residents of Brazil, South Africa and other hot countries where there is no winter shower trees with cotton, symbolizing snow.

Well, decorating your home with the whole family is a common New Year tradition for all countries.

Different styles of decorating the Christmas tree with toys

Time inexorably rushes forward, and progress does not stand still. From year to year, new interesting styles appear. Today, the following ways to decorate Christmas trees are popular.


The most common fashion trend, including decorating the beautiful forest tree. Everything returns, the new is the well-forgotten old. Soon, dusty boxes tied with frayed twine, with old Christmas tree decorations, all New Year's tinsel, will descend from the mezzanine. Mixed garlands - stars, globes, paper flags with heroes from folk tales, multi-colored glass beads. And the unchanging five-pointed red star. And at the foot there is always Santa Claus with the Snow Maiden made of cotton wool and plastic and cardboard. Retro toys are back in fashion, reminiscent of old designs, artificially aged.

European style

A large fir tree, decorated with balls of the same size in two or three colors, large flowers and bows made of satin, silk and brocade, which are symmetrically placed on a green beauty, will perfectly fit into a modern interior.


It is gaining more and more popularity among lovers of a healthy lifestyle and involves the use of safe materials. In this case, you can decorate the Christmas tree with fruits, nuts, oranges, all kinds of chocolate figurines. Painted cones, rowan twigs look very stylish.


Today, handmade items are highly valued - non-standard and extraordinary decorations: toys are knitted, sewn, glued, sculpted, cut out of paper and wood.

And there is also the wonderful style of "Uncle Fyodor" - everything that is in the house is on the Christmas tree. How many interesting things are gathering dust in attics, mezzanines, in grandmother's chests - you just have to be smart. Family photos on fragrant fluffy branches are very touching.

In whatever style you decorate your prickly fluffy tree, the holiday will still come to every home, and the New Year mood is guaranteed to everyone!

How to properly decorate a Christmas tree

Spruce decoration is the most exciting and pleasant moment of preparation for the holiday. This magical ritual brings the whole family together, and adults, along with children, are waiting for a New Year's miracle. Do you use the same toys every year? Maybe it's time to change the style or add some fresh touch to old toys?

A few simple tips will help turn the most ordinary-looking tree into an elegant beauty: