I sell on eBay, and as a seller, I am constantly on the lookout for things to resell. I sell mostly secondhand, and that includes a lot of holiday items and vintage items. Recently I was at a local flea market, the Alameda Point Antiques Faire, one of the largest around here in the Bay Area, and came across a vendor who had a bunch of holiday stuff set out, mostly Halloween and some Christmas. Among his Christmas items was this handmade, kitschy looking piece:
It looked like some kind of dioramic snow scene, complete with mini figures. Handwritten on the bottom was, “Feather tree made for Sue 1967 from Mother to Sue.” It’s as old as me!
I asked the seller what it was, and he told me that it was originally a base for a mini Christmas tree. The seller had purchased all these handmade Christmas items from this woman who had made them as gifts, but apparently had never given them to the intended recipients. Now whether she had a falling out with the individuals on her gift list, or had a change of heart and decided to keep everything for herself, we’ll never know, but this piece was one of many she made.
You can tell she spent a lot of time on it, from collecting all the little doodads to gluing them all together.
What’s so funny is that there are multiple Santas – at least three – scattered here and there, among all the other figures, including a soldier, horses, reindeer, a snowman, teddy bears, a drum set, stuffed stocking, houses, etc – even a potted toadstool – lol! Apparently, you can never have enough Santas :0)
Random bits all glued together to create something endearingly kitschy and homey at the same time. I can see the lady who created this sitting at the kitchen table with glue all over her fingers and perhaps some Christmas music playing in the background, all warm and cozy with the snow falling outside, working patiently on her daughter’s gift.
I guess that’s why I’m drawn to things like this – things that tell a story. There’s a story behind the creation and the story that the piece is designed to tell. The fact that it was lovingly made by individual human hands makes it all the more charming.
Do you like shopping at flea markets and rummage sales? What wacky, weird, or nostalgic hidden treasures have you found lately? Please share in the comments.