Nutcrackers may be an addition to your Christmas displays whether they are standing alone or hanging on your tree. These lovely decorations can be seen everywhere, especially when you visit a traditional Christmas market, but how did these become a favourite festive decoration?
Read this handy blog to learn a little about one of our favourite types of decorations…
According to German folklore, nutcrackers we given as keepsakes to bring luck to the family and protect the home. It is said that they represent strength and power and watches over the family keeping evil spirits and danger away.
They originate from ancestral dining customs where unusual, novelty nutcrackers were part of dining entertainment during the dessert course. It would generate fun conversation whilst tucking into their final course which could include pecans and hazelnuts.
Many of the early designs of nutcrackers were of birds, animals and people. It wasn’t until the 1600’s and 1700’s that they took the shape of kings and soldiers that we are familiar with today!
Nutcrackers were mainly popular in Germany to begin with, and were crafted in the Erzgebirge mountain regions.
It wasn’t until the 1800’s that this tradition was known worldwide from the release of the Tchaikovsky ballet ‘The Nutcracker Suite’ in 1892.
Many of us will have heard of this ballet and may treat ourselves to a trip to the theatre to see it over Christmas. The story of this production first came from the novel ‘The Nutcracker and the king of Mice’ by E.T. Amadeus Hoffman in the late 1700’s/early 1800’s, and is probably where we recognise the Christmas nutcracker from the most. The ballet was debuted in 1892 in St. Petersburg and is an ever popular festive treat for young and old worldwide due to its Christmassy theme.
From this point on, the ballet and German nutcracker figure have become well known around the world, and fans have demanded high quality German nutcrackers ever since. This therefore was where the nutcracker gained its popularity every Christmas time!
Here at UK Christmas World we stock a fantastic range of festive nutcrackers in the traditional German design. Whether these are to stand alone in their very own Christmas display or if they are hung from a Christmas tree they will add something special to your decorations this year, giving your home that lovely traditional feel!