Hard to believe it was way back in early spring of 2012 that we started to think about ideas and concepts for this year’s holiday glass ornament collection. Each one of the final 28 ornaments and three tree toppers began with numerous rough sketches, followed by detailed color drawings, before they can be handed over to the glass workshops in Poland. We are very fortunate to work with an amazing group of old-world craftspeople who carve each design in clay to form the molds they will eventually blow the glass into. Each silver-lined glass ornament is then completely hand-painted in luminous colors with delicate tracings of glitter, and hand-set with Swarovski crystals.

I wish I could say that it was those early spring blossoms that inspired the Mille Fiori ornaments. But as so often happens, our current jeweled metal designs were both the inspiration and challenge. The charm of our metal Mille Fiori figurines is in the minute details of each flower, but the challenge was how to capture that with the limitations of glass molds. The finished ornaments are some of my favorites–each one enhanced with thin raised blossoms to further the look of a field of flowers.

Another challenge this year was to try to create an ornament depicting the holy family in a crèche with animals in the background. Again using our Nativity figurines as the starting point, a magnificent clay model was sculpted with the family on one side and the manger on the other, with a starry night completing the scene.

We save our most whimsical ornaments for the Jubilee grouping: a prancing ostrich with big eyes and layers of necklaces…

…the monkey wearing a sequined vest, who has jumped on a glittery scrolled ornament…

…or the turtle, with his bejeweled shell, who can barely walk with that oversized ornament he is carrying…

…while the gentle tiger is protecting his ornament, patterned like a Russian jeweled egg.

Finally, our iconic Peacock collection has inspired this stunning tree topper, his tail completely swirled with iridescent paint, glitter and crystals. He proudly stands way over a foot tall on a matching display base.

I have only been able to talk about a handful of the new designs here, but there are so many more, each one just as beautiful and created one at a time for you!

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