Where do you find unique, unusual and/or interesting Christmas decorations?

(45 Posts)
DSJamesHathaway Fri 16-Aug-13 20:51:30

I'd like to get some new decorations this year but I don't want to go down the route of a few packs of bog-standard baubles and some tinsel. Where can I find interesting and original decorations? Ideally I'd like one or two of each one so the tree is really interesting when you look at it and you can spend a while as there are lots of different things on it to see (if that makes sense).

Slainte Fri 16-Aug-13 21:20:13

I haven't had a look at this yet but I'd imagine Folksy would have some.

Costco do some lovely glass baubles each year .
I buy one set a year (last year were forest green and gold. Year before red/gold)
I always manage to break a couple blush but IIRC they work out £2 each or so.

girlywhirly Sat 17-Aug-13 15:21:54

DSJamesHathaway, I agree with you that an assortment of different tree decorations make it more interesting to look at. If you choose odd numbers of decorations it looks better than even numbers so go for 1, 3, 5, 7 etc. Choose different shapes and sizes, shiny, matt, glittery, smooth, covered in sequins or gems, plain, etc. You can add interest to a single colour scheme this way, and also by varying the colour you have chosen e.g. with a gold scheme, add some pale gold or almost silver, and dark gold to almost bronze with your gold decs.

I find that independent garden centres have pretty good Christmas decs, usually towards the end of October they are on sale. Don't expect to find everything you want this year, I have found that it takes a few years to get a collection together. Have you any Christmas craft fairs or markets you could go to, they often have unusual things. In a village not far from where I live there is a farm that has a special Christmas barn every year full of decorations, they do real trees as well, is there something like this near you, they are often advertised in the local press. They are often sources of good quality items.

lunar1 Sat 17-Aug-13 15:23:55

Do you have a bents garden centre near you. They have some lovely things every year

NoComet Sat 17-Aug-13 15:28:26

Garden centres are good HofF and John Lewis are sometimes, but you need to go in as soon as they set up their Christmas displays and be prepared to spend real money.

You really need several years to build up a good interesting mix. Mine are the result of 25 years of collecting and some are from holidays to America and Germany.

FriskyMare Sat 17-Aug-13 15:34:44

I got some star decorations from JL a few years ago, different sizes, some shiny, some matt some flock in gold/red/blue/lime and pink. I hang them around the room on different length thread from the cornice. Look fab in my opinion
Have my eye on a JL pre lit paper tree for this year.

Earlybird Sat 17-Aug-13 15:39:14

Visit museum gift shops and/or websites.

When we go on holiday, we always bring home an ornament or two as a souvenir (much better than a t-shirt!).

If you can splurge, visit Harrod's and Liberty. You'll see some prices that will make your eyes water, but perhaps you can buy one a year? We do, and it has become a lovely family tradition.

Small, independent gift shops and interior design shops often have unusual and/or handmade ornaments - they have to stock different sorts of items than the big chains.

chirpchirp Sat 17-Aug-13 22:51:48

I couldn't afford to buy my (naice) baubles all in one go so started with the cheap and cheerful pound stretcher artillery. Then every year I buy one or two more expensive glass baubles and swap out the cheap ones. Most of them came from John Lewis or Dobbies.

NoComet Sun 18-Aug-13 00:32:01

Earlybird, that reminds me, I have some lovely ones from Selfridges when we did a HT London trip.

iklboo Sun 18-Aug-13 00:38:58

We buy a couple of things each year from the European Market that comes to Manchester. We choose something & DS chooses something.

mmmmmchocolate Sun 18-Aug-13 07:35:05

I find M&S good most years. They are 3 for 2 so sometimes I can get 3 quality glass baubles for £5. The last 2 years I haven't got as many because their ranges haven't gone as well with my colour scheme so I've had to pick out the odd gold and red decorations.

I too started out with a multi pack of generic baubles and replaced them over the last 8 years. In fact I looked at a picture from 5 years ago and the tree looked empty! Now most of the cheap ones have gone and I only keep a dozen or so to put deep inside the tree to give depth.

Oldraver Sat 24-Aug-13 10:22:36

The Christmas Shop in Lechlade does lots of lovely things including German pewter ornaments.

Over the years I have collected a lot of brass cutout/fretwork ornaments. they are very delicate and lovely. I find them in all sots of shops from BHS to to specific Christmas shops and garden centers.

I treated myself to some china ones a few years ago and was a bit shock when I realised how much they had increased in price, so wa svery carefull with them.

We have a mix of cheerful cheap baubles and individual ones, we let the DCs choose a new one each, each year from the garden centre where we get our tree. Yes also to Christmas markets and craft fairs. Tinsel is not allowed on our tree, or any garlands but other than that no rules, so we have a lovely colourful collection now.

fuzzpig Sat 24-Aug-13 11:41:39

I've really struggled finding Xmas decorations since Past Times went. Used to get the DCs one each every year, from the elves (delivered at the same time as PJs on Xmas eve) but last year found nothing at all in town.

I was looking on the National Gallery website though and noticed a couple of Owl ones which I quite liked. Not sure what to do though as I'd like to get one for DS' teacher (Owl class grin) but then can't really pretend that they come from the elves if I get him the same one... oh the agony of indecision.

ShimmeringInTheSun Sat 24-Aug-13 12:18:32

I like to make my own and a couple of years ago discovered this site
www.craftshapes.co.uk that sells all kinds of wooden blanks that you (or the children) can decorate.
I've put a few images on my profile so you can see what I mean. I've used old buttons, scraps of embossing metal, wire and beads to do mine, but you could use anything!

MarshaBrady Sat 24-Aug-13 12:22:18

Liberty, but expensive. We have many then buy a few each year to top up.

Oldraver Sun 25-Aug-13 12:54:47

Liberty ? no stock showing online yet I suppose they will be at the usual Christmas fare.

<wonders if I can get a staff discount>

MarshaBrady Sun 25-Aug-13 13:01:29

Not sure if they do them online, probably. They won't have them in store until around Nov/ December.

Do you work there oldraver?

jamtoast12 Sun 25-Aug-13 18:48:19

Tkmaxx always has lovely Scandinavian style decorations. I get a couple each year from there as one offs

Just remembered, I bought some lovely Scandinavian style ones in Lidl a couple of years ago, lots of different shape ones woven out of straw (like corn dollies etc) and decorated with red ribbons and threads.

Oldraver Sun 25-Aug-13 21:26:24

I've just started working for a company that is owned by Libertys... I did joke to my boss if there was a company discount

BiddyPop Mon 26-Aug-13 11:31:15

I've gotten a few over the years (for ourselves and lots of both Christmas and Wedding presents) from Trim the Tree which have all been lovely.

I buy in the sales in January and summer, to get a few (again, for ourselves and as presents) from companies like Belleek china, Waterford crystal, Newbridge silver etc. So they work out not nearly as expensive but fabulous heirlooms. While I tend to get Irish companies, there are lots of UK companies that do similar (I know I've seen Royal Worcester, LLadro and a load of other campanies over the years - they may not have a lot each, but one or 2 interesting ones are all you need) - look on their websites for inspiration and then check out high end stores as they often reduce them heavily at times.

I get a new decoration every year on holidays - I look for quirky things in the places we go and almost always find something.

Look in craft and design shops - not arts and crafts, but more lifestyle homewares crafts. You will often find lovely baubles and decorations that you can buy individually, so just get 2 or 3 of an interesting designed bauble, or a single decoration.

The internet is great. For ideas (to make or hunt out) and buying. Look at places like Martha Stewart or other home decor, or Christmas websites for inspiration. Some may sell too. But also places like Etsy, ebay, amazon, and lots of smaller sites too, will have quirky things as well as mainstream baubles. Even places like Primark can have interesting things if you look past the big packs of 100 red and gold plastic round balls!! grin

I have 3 long teardrop shaped glass baubles, that add length to the bottom end of the tree, then I have a few different round glass ones that are reasonably large, quite a few "regular" sized glass ones moving through the middle, and then a few in 2 smaller sizes as we get to the top. And then I have a big variety of various animals, a fairy trapped in a glass jar, a crib carved into a Christmas tree decoration, glass Santa Claus and glass snowman, straw stars, pewter chorus of angels, pottery snowman, Snoopy sitting on a tree light bulb, a steam train, a New York cab, Santa climbing up Notre Dame, mushrooms, pine cones, stars (various ones, made of wire, glass, straw, pottery, paper), mini stockings (that I sometimes put candy canes into).......all sorts. But I ave been gathering my collection for the past 14 years. I hide some things in the depths of the branches, some quite hard to spot, others have a bulb from the lights put near them to hightlight them (I love a bulb behind glass ones, giving them a glow).

BiddyPop Mon 26-Aug-13 11:35:03

OOh yes, I just saw someone mentioned an art gallery - Art Galleries and Museums often have some quite interesting decorations in their gift shops. And because lots of people avoid those shops, they are not that commonly seen!!

And I have seen trees where the cookie cutters have been hung (either kept as decorations only or cleaned and hung after use), which can be lovely.

WafflyVersatile Mon 26-Aug-13 11:43:32
lade Mon 26-Aug-13 18:23:22

Another vote for the Christmas Shop (link above). They have some lovely stuff in there.

I also like John Lewis Christmas Decorations too.

fuzzpig Mon 26-Aug-13 18:43:38

What I really really yearn for on my tree is a golden bust of Sir Isaac Newton, like Sheldon hangs on his tree on Big Bang Theory. Never been able to find one though!

Vatta Mon 26-Aug-13 19:03:44

Omg waffly those were disturbing!

Have saved the page to freak DH out nearer the time smile

Chl0e2 Mon 26-Aug-13 19:09:07

I love the newbridge silver ones. I buy one or two each year and have done for about 7 years so the tree looks amazing now. they are gorgeous. not sure if I can link at this time of year.

oh yes, here's the link

newpup Mon 26-Aug-13 19:29:08

I have a huge tree and love it covered in different individual ornaments. I have hundreds of different ones and have been collecting them for 17 years. My favourites are ones that have come form America, they are lovely and I always buy one whenever we go.

Museum shops like the V&A have lovely ones, garden centres and craft fairs are great.

Those newbridge ones look lovely chloe2.

WafflyVersatile Mon 26-Aug-13 19:33:48

Vatta, I think the swaddling babe hanging from the tree is my favourite.

Blueboys2009 Mon 26-Aug-13 19:47:23

Fuzzpig - not a tree ornament, but here's a small Isaac Newton bust that you could probably wedge between a couple of branches and hope nobody touches the tree balance ever so carefully on the tree. Alternativey these are actual tree ornaments (gues who's got a geek for a husband!?))

DoItTooJulia Mon 26-Aug-13 20:28:54

Macy's do some gorgeous ones.

Great if you know someone going to NYC, but you can order online!

Oldraver Mon 26-Aug-13 21:36:33

Oooh I've bookmarked the Newbridge ones.

The Christmas Shop website isnt showing as many things as previous years..I think it may of been sold recently and the site in different but thay have masses of stuff in store.

I have the first 6 of these Crown Derby ones. They look much nicer in real life.

WafflyVersatile Mon 26-Aug-13 21:56:11

Not really what you're looking for but someone might be.

Krampus tree ornaments. for scaring the children.

http://www.zazzle.co.uk/krampus+ornaments

WafflyVersatile Mon 26-Aug-13 21:56:20
GemmaTeller Mon 26-Aug-13 21:57:13

Pinterest

littleoaktree Mon 26-Aug-13 22:14:25

Make them yourself grin - seriously though there are some lovely ideas on Pinterest, I made quite a few last year.

Sass and Belle had some lovely ones last year, doesn't look like they have any on their website for this year yet but definitely one to watch.

fuzzpig Mon 26-Aug-13 22:20:52

Wow thanks blue! grin

BiddyPop Tue 27-Aug-13 10:29:33

Thank you Blue from me too - I have a new thing to put on the tree this year!! (I did science, DH is an engineer, and DD likes both (v logical aspergers kid) and we ALL love TBBT!!). grin

DSJamesHathaway Wed 28-Aug-13 21:15:14

Thank you everyone for soe great ideas. I found some nice wooden cut out ones today whilst on holiday so following girlywhirly's advice I bought 3.

I am also planning on buying some plain wooden shapes and decorating them thanks to shimmeringinthesun

Londondecs Wed 08-Oct-14 16:14:41

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

poolomoomon Wed 08-Oct-14 22:11:05

eBay, Etsy and tk maxx. Almost all of mine are from those three, some are ikea too. My trees a massive higgeldy piggeldy mash up of different quirky ones, you find all sorts of weird and wonderful ones on there.

Longdistance Wed 08-Oct-14 22:20:52

Can I recommend BHS. I've bought many nice decorations from them over the years. I may need to pay a visit, as my decorations are becoming quite scant over the years with dds accidentally breaking them.

fragolino Wed 08-Oct-14 22:24:20

what a brilliant website - WOODEN BLANKS...fabulous!

TK MAX, HOMESENSE,

Unique - different un usual, and cheap!

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