Friday, December 18, 2009

German Christmas Crafts

The German Traditions surrounding Christmas is the experience you get strolling through an authentic German Christmas Market.

With its romantic charm and festive atmosphere, the market will inspire a feeling of tradition through the hand made crafts: from smoking figures, candles, pottery, gingerbread, Advent stars, blown glass and other ornamental treasures.

Here you can take a piece of this old world tradition home with you! Many are difficult to resist, along with a mug of delicious mulled wine or the baked apples that are so tempting on a crisp winter day!

German Smokers are wooden figurines with the insides hollowed out. A metal pan inside holds a piece of incense.

When lit, the incense smokes, through the mouth of the figurine, making it look like it is smoking through a pipe, or its mouth. Often replicated to represent working class occupations or recreational sportsman and often jolly rotund characters for sure. I have seen bakers, farriers, chefs, hunters, hikers, skiers, merchants, and many others.

The nutcrackers originated not only as practical tools, but were totems said to protect families from danger. Their big wooden teeth were designed to scare away evil spirits, and their ability to crack nuts symbolized the circle of life:
 A tree drops a seed (nut), which becomes a tree, out of which the nutcracker is born. The nutcracker, by design, also was a form of satirical political commentary. Nutcrackers made in the image of high-ranking officials, kings and soldiers were a way to force high-status men to “serve” the people.

Unique wooden figures to hang on the tree make for a whimsical addition to any holiday d├ęcor.

It’s hard not to walk away with a little Christmas spirit or traditional German craftsmanship during a Christmas Market visit.

Frohes Weihnachten


Anonymous said...

I love your blogs on Germany and the Christmas markets. Through both the written word and the fabulous photographer you capture the spirit of the holidays - it makes me want to visit. Perhaps one day I shall.

Laura said...

I love your Christmas market photos. The close-up of the stars is my favorite.

Susan Kozlowski said...

Thank you! It is a magical place.


Blog Widget by LinkWithin