The story of our mouth-blown glass ornaments
December 04, 2018
The holidays often center around the themes of sparkle, shine, and tradition. And nothing brings those elements together like our hand-painted, mouth-blown glass ornaments.
We’ve been making these intricately detailed ornaments for more than a decade, and each year we introduce 35 to 40 new designs, says Julie Schneider, product manager for our holiday collection. In addition to ornaments that are designed specifically to enhance our annual themed holiday collections, you’ll also find new additions to our ever-popular Santas, our dated ornaments to commemorate special events, and our iconic holiday themes, including fireplaces, wreaths, gingerbread houses, Nativity, and more. To many of our customers, their MacKenzie-Childs’ Christmas ornaments are like old friends, returning for an eagerly anticipated annual visit, bringing an abundance of memories with them.
Our mouth-blown glass ornaments are made in Poland, which has a long history of making beautiful Christmas ornaments. The process still celebrates handmade traditional craftsmanship.
Each ornament starts with a glassblower, who blows air through a heated glass tube. Then the glass, which has been blown into a sphere at one end, is put in the center of a two-piece aluminum ornament mold that is clamped around the hot glass. The glassblower blows more air through the tube, so that the glass fills the mold.
After the ornament is removed from the mold and cools, its interior is silvered, a process that gives the piece its reflective quality. Then, the ornament is hand-painted, and touches of glitter are added. After that, the blowing tube, which has been serving as a stem to handle the ornament, is snipped from the neck, and an ornament cap and wire hanger are added, along with a MacKenzie-Childs charm. Finally, the ornament is packaged in a landscape decorated box that makes it perfect for gift giving and offers sturdy storage as well.
The most obvious way to display your MacKenzie-Childs mouth-blown glass ornaments is on a tree, so be sure to pick a spot where they will receive lots of attention. And be sure, too, if there are little fingers or pets nearby to securely attach the ornaments to the tree by adding a little piece of wire to the hangers and wrapping them to the tree branches.
But beyond the tree, there are lots of other creative ways to show off our ornaments. Here are some additional shiny and bright ideas:
- Put one of our hand-blown glass ornaments under a cloche with some seasonal greenery.
- Hang them from the arms of a chandelier or from the antlers of our Courtly Check Small Deer.
- Place an ornament in the center of a wreath or an antique frame to give it extra attention.
- Add some sparkle to your table by including an ornament or two in a centerpiece or put several ornaments in our pretty Courtly Check Compote.
- Tuck ornaments into holiday vignettes that you display on open shelves or on your fireplace mantel.
- Hang ornaments from ribbons above the mantel to frame the display below.
Lastly, store your ornaments carefully when the holidays are over. Before putting them in their original boxes, wipe them with a clean dry cloth and remove the ornament hooks so they don’t scratch the finish. And be sure to pick a storage spot for your Christmas items that is moisture-free.
Following these guidelines will keep your ornaments looking good for years to come, so you can hand them down to the next generation of MacKenzie-Childs collectors.