History of Russian Christmas and New Year Tree Ornaments

First Russian Christmas ornaments were manufactured in the Russian estate of Prince Menshikov in the first part of the 19th century.
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There were glass mouth-blown beads and glass balls.
And they were very expensive and never produced in large amounts.

They were mainly bought for the Russian Imperial Court.

Since the 1900s some Russian small private manufacturers launched producing of pressed cotton Christmas ornaments.

However, Russia still imported Christmas ornaments from Germany until World War 1st.

Soviet or Russian New Year Tree Ornaments.

You should do use a term – New Year Tree Ornaments or Decorations if you speak about glass, beaded, cotton and/or plastic ornaments from the former Soviet Union, Russia.

Soviet Russian cotton ornaments of the 1930-50s

Soviet Russian cotton ornaments of the 1930-50s


Why not to say CHRISTMAS ornaments? Simple, it was not the Christmas in Soviet Russia since the 1920s.

In 1927 Christmas celebration was prohibited officially in Soviet Union by communist government.

Also, Russian people were not even allowed to celebrate the New Year during 1927-1936.

In 1936 communist leaders allowed people to celebrate the New Year. First New Year tree ornaments were produced in Moscow in 1936-1937.

There were 3 kinds of ornaments or decorations: cotton, glass and cardboard ones in those, pre WW II years.

Beaded decorations started to make in the beginning of the 1950s.

The “corn period” glass ornaments

The “corn period” glass ornaments


Plastic ornaments produced in USSR in the middle of the 1960s.

Before the 1970s, almost all glass ornaments are painted by hand in USSR.

Manufacturing cardboard, beaded and cotton ornaments was stopped in the 1960s.
Cotton standing figures of Russian Santa Claus “Grandfather Frost“(that pronounced as “Ded Moroz” in Russian) were continued to produce in USSR.

You cannot see angels or other Bible’s characters, because same ornaments never produced in the former Soviet Union.

However, you can watch some of the Russian historic events if you look on many ornaments.

The “space race” glass ornaments

The “space race” glass ornaments


A few examples:

The “corn period” was in USSR in the 1950s. And many glass corns were produced during that period.

The “space race” between USSR and the United States of the 1960s and this mean many Russian glass ornaments with
Soviet space rockets, Soviet cosmonauts and orbital satellites.

Characters from fairy tales, birds and animal ornaments were popular among Soviet people very.

Gene Grin.

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Posted in Collectible Christmas Ornaments
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