I’ve always wondered where the tradition of Christmas Ornaments came from but never took the time to find out. Finally I’ve done a deep dive into the history and tradition of Christmas ornaments (and a bit about Christmas trees) and now you will know the answer too! Plus I’ll share some pineapple Christmas ornaments that you can buy for your next season’s tree decoration.
Ancient traditions were to decorate your dwelling with evergreen trees or branches to symbolize eternal life. Modern Christmas trees began as a tradition in Christian homes around the 16th century in Germany. Apples and candy or pastry shaped into stars, hearts and flowers were the first decorations. Glass beads and baubles were then created especially for tree decoration. As popularity soared, ornaments became mass produced.
Let’s dive into where the first baubles were made and by whom. Then let’s find out where the most popular mass produced items were made.
Christmas Tree And Ornament Origins
The idea of a tree representing the Christian celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ only came into our modern traditions in the 1600s. Ancient civilizations like the Romans, Egyptians and Vikings marked the winter solstice with evergreen boughs, garlands or wreaths to symbolize hope and rebirth during the darkest winter days.
You may have heard of Saturnalia – the Roman midwinter festival celebrating the god Saturn. During those times, people decorated with the evergreen trees or boughs. They also partied, drank, ate and exchanged gifts. It was a merry time for all. Trees themselves were worshiped by Pagans in Europe and soon the triangle shaped evergreen fir trees were used as symbols of the holy trinity in Christian tradition.
All these ancient traditions combined into the Christian Christmas tree, first celebrated out of doors. Trees were brought indoors at some point in Germany between 1550 and 1600. Trees were part of the church holiday plays and called “paradise trees.” The Feast of Adam and Eve was on December 24th at those times, so their “paradise tree” became part of the scene. Trees were decorated with apples specifically to represent the forbidden fruit along with nuts, dates, pastries and paper flowers. At first these trees were displayed in guild halls or town halls and the treats were collected by the children on Christmas day. Soon trees were being brought into family homes for private decoration and celebration instead of the older creche or manger scenes previously used for decoration in Christian homes.
Modern Christmas Tree Decorations
Germany was the center point for bringing Christmas trees inside family homes and then decorating with glass baubles. the first glass ornaments were made in Lauscha Germany by a glass blower named Hans Greiner. He created blown glass spheres and also glass beads strung as a garland. He also created tin figures to hang on the trees. Other glass blowers in the area realized how popular Hans’ ornaments had become and began to make and sell their own around Germany.
Then, in 1840, that OG Influencer par excellence Queen Victoria wrote about how the glass baubles on her husband Albert’s German Christmas tree made her so happy. And there was an image included in the newspaper of her tree and BLAMMO – glass baubles were all the rage in England. (She also made white wedding dresses a THING.)
German immigrants took the ornament traditions with them to the Unites States in the 1800s where people got inventive and created popcorn and cranberry garlands to also decorate their trees. As the decades and technology moved ahead, mass production of Christmas ornaments happened in the US, Germany, Japan and Eastern Europe. New materials started being used, like tinsel and silk and wool to create all kinds of garlands and ornaments.
The ancient traditions came from symbols of the evergreens, the winter solstice and celebrating hope and light in dark winter days. Then in the middle ages, decorations became the new thing – decorations to symbolize Christian stories and customs. A popular queen expressed her love of the German traditions and boosted the Christmas ornament all over the world.
Today you can get any kind of ornament you ever dreamed of. Like Pineapple ornaments!
Pineapple Christmas Ornaments
Whether you love the luscious pineapple or know someone who does, here are some fantastic ornaments to buy for your own holiday decorating or to give as gifts. Or both! When I find something I love, like the perfect Christmas ornament, I usually buy one for me and one for all my friends. Spread the joy!
Blown Glass Pineapple Ornament
I love this gorgeous old style pineapple. It looks like it could have come from my grandmother’s attic! I secretly dream of having one big tree and a few little trees in my house at Christmas. I would LOVE to have one little tree that is just covered in Pineapple ornaments. This would be one of them! Might have to buy a few to put all over the tree. Click here to buy from Amazon.
Pink Pineapple With Rhinestones Pineapple Ornament
For those who love pink AND pineapples, this one is for you! With the addition of the sparkly gems, this one will stand out on any tree. This would be darling as first Christmas ornament for a new born girl! Also perfect for all the lovers of PINK in your life. Click here to buy from Amazon.
Set of Six Multi-Color Pineapple Ball Ornaments
Combining one classic Christmas ornament shape with images of pineapples is the best way to combine traditional holiday hospitality. Two blue, two green and two red balls come in this set, each covered in sparkly pineapple graphics. Makes a great “please open before Christmas” gift! Buy here from Amazon.
Hawai’i Style Pineapple in Clear Class Bauble
The sweet little pineapple is nestled in the glass ball with a special view window in it. This sweet ornament will remind you of that tropical vacation year after year when you put it on the tree. The sun, the surf, the sweet golden pineapple fruit at breakfast every day. Click to buy here from Amazon.
Wood Carved Pineapple Wreath Shaped Ornament
I love this look of this wooden ornament. The wreath shape made out of tropical leaves and the hibiscus blossoms with the pineapple really create a nice image. This would be so pretty on a white Christmas tree or right up next to the lights on a green tree. This could also be another excellent souvenir to give to friends and family after a trip to the islands. Click here to buy from Amazon.
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