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David Claudon's

Santa Claus Collection

 

Many years ago, I began collecting Santa Claus figures. The collection has grown quite large. Shown on this page are a few of my favorites.

 

    Miniature Santas
   

One of the smallest Santas in my collection can barely be seen as an ornament in a 5-inch Christmas tree. Made from an HO train figure, he is dressed in a Kleenex outfit, stiffened with paint. The Santa beside it is cast epoxy from Cecil Boyd. I painted the figure and made all the ornaments for the tree.

All Photographs copyright 1997 by C. David Claudon.

 

   

My wife often gave me Santas for Christmas. At right is one she made using a porcelain head by miniaturist Laurel Coulon. The feather tree, fence and houses were from Georgia Matuchak. Beside it is a 1/4-inch scale poinsetta plant.

 

   

 

One of my favorite miniature Santas is pictured above with a card utilizing an English advertisement for Tom Smith's Christmas Crackers. According to the 1988 card by Woodmansterne of England, "Tom Smith called his first Christmas crackers 'Bangs of Expectation'. He made them to celebrate almost any occasion - the invention of the telephone, the return of the Antartic explorers, even to poke fun at Darwin's Theory of Evolution." The 6-inch Santa was made by miniaturist doll maker Virginia Hartzell (Hartzell Originals). He holds a petit-point Santa head ornament by Alice Adelman.  
  Commercial Santas
   

The Santas from right to left are collected Santas from various periods. The first , probably the oldest, is a celluloid Santa with real fur and a bell attached. In the center is 50's Santa with flocked suit and fur beard, a small celluloid candy container with hole in his hat for hanging. Finally a modern Pez container with Santa head.  
  A Billy Doll Santa
   

Billy stands about 14 inches high. Here he wears a traditional red Belsnickle suit with real fur. His beard is of sheeps wool.  
  Homemade Santas
   
In 1994, my wife and I made Santas as presents for our friends. These soft-sculpture figures stood 18 inches high. I painted all the faces and designed the clothing, while my wife did all the sewing of the figures and the costumes. To the left is a Santa I designed for myself, utlizing many of my interests. He wears a red and green quilted coat with fur trim and fur boots. He carries a basket with a rabbit, teddy bear, sack of oranges, Nutcracker ornament, fawn ornament, Belsnickle Santa, and bag full with a miniature house, book, a second Nutcracker, sticks (for bad girls and boys), and a pocket watch. On his back is a Christmas tree with red ornaments and a cardinal. At Santa's feet stands a ceramic cat.
 
   
Santa wears a yellow slicker and boots. He carries a mermaid doll (which I painted), a toy boat, string of fish and a crab.  
   
Friends in Minnesota got a woodland Santa complete with food basket, lantern, nest with bird, rabbit, and bag with loon.
 
   
Friends in New Orleans got a gay-lib Santa. His tree is decorated with rainbow colored balls and his black fur-edged robe is a coat of many colors. The friends collected owls and so he carries an owl. He also has a basket of food and a gold lame bag, filled with sticks, a teddy bear and a black poodle (a likeness of our friends' dog). When Santa draws back his robe, he wears a black studded jock-strap with red AIDS ribbon and nipple-rings.
  The Rest of My Collection  
   
  Research  
   
  • Bahar, Ann. (1992). Santa dolls: a celebration of Father Christmas doll art, both antique and contemporary. Cumberland, MD: Hobby House Press.
  • Brenner, R. (1993). Christmas through the decades. Atglen, PA: Schiffer Publishing, Ltd.
  • Whitmyer, M. & K. (1994). Christmas collectibles (2nd ed.). Paduca, KY: Collector Books.

This webpage created by David Claudon, 8 December 1997. Last update, April 25, 2009 .

Merry Christmas

[ Home ][ The Cleopatra Costume ] [ Commedia dell'Arte ] [ Cyrano ] [ Dressing for Shakespeare ]
[ The Iliad ][ Decorating Forties Style ]
[ Decorating for a Fifties Christmas ] [ To Kill a Mockingbird ]
[
A Rainbow Honor Roll ] [ Miniatures ] [ Paper Dolls ] [ Santa Collection ] [ Clarence ]