Becoming a full-fledged adult comes with a bunch of rites of passage, and buying a home is definitely one of the big ones. Buying and decorating your first Christmas tree inside that home: a smaller but nonetheless emotionally affecting one, at least from where we sit.
Most of us usually start with a collection of cheap, unbreakable ball ornaments, and start making the tree cooler from there. With Thanksgiving past us and the 2016 Christmas decorating in effect, we’ve been looking around for ornaments that are a little more special — particular ones that give a nod to our home of Nashville. Or to Nashville’s delightful weirdness.
Here, a few of the favorites we’ve stumbled on in the past week, either available in Nashville, from Nashvillians or from artisans we met in Nashville. Hope they get you in the yuletide spirit too.
Welcome Home hipster critters
1882 Eastland Ave.
If East Nashvillians are constantly going to get called hipsters, might as well steer into it. East Side shop Welcome Home has a collection of felted, bespectacled and plaid/denim-clad critters to hang on your tree, or to give to someone who appreciates a good hipster joke.
LinenLaid&Felt handmade book ornaments
East Nashville’s Katie Gonzalez is an expert local bookbinder, and her full-sized handmade books make excellent, shop-small/buy-local gifts. For a treat-yourself thing, we really like her Christmas tree star ornament books too. You can scribble memories inside, and open them up every year as you’re decorating the tree to reflect on Christmases past. Plus they’re really cute. (And you can grab them via Etsy.)
Cadeau hot dog ornaments
2308 12th Ave South
Cute 12 South gift shop Cadeau has a bunch of unique/unusual (and more usual) ornaments in stock, but we’re partial to these hot dogs. No reason, they’re just kind of fascinatingly ridiculous, and that brings good cheer.
Loveless Cafe Tin Sign Ornament
8400 Highway 100
Few things say Nashville quite like the Loveless Cafe, and short of hanging a biscuit on your tree, this is probably the best way to bring some Loveless love into your Christmas decor. It’s made of tin, and looks like you’ve shrunk the real Loveless neon sign down and stuck it on your evergreen. Really cute, and really fun (and easy to buy online).
Draper James, Frame Ornament
2608 12th Avenue South
Actress Reese Witherspoon developed the Draper James brand/12 South shop to showcase and share “the things I love most life in the South: the people, the parties, the food and the fun!” Christmas-appropriate, certainly. Remember the little popsicle-stick frame ornaments you made as a kid? Reese’s place has a kind of grown-up spin on that with this Frame Ornament, hanging by red gingham and decked in shiny gold (the color, not the metal). It’s gonna be a little more of an heirloom thing than a buy-20-and-cover-the-tree. But it definitely beams Christmas in the South — albeit a luxurious one.
Good Sister Bad Sister Studio and Boutique Cash Christmas ornament
914 Woodland St.
Newer East Nashville boutique Good Sister Bad Sister has an array of filled, clear Christmas balls, celebrating all kinds of stuff from the Cubs to David Bowie. But for a Nashville Christmas tree, it’s hard to go wrong with The Man in Black flipping the bird.
OnceAgainSam felted bat ornaments
We first got introduced to South Carolina’s Once Again Sam at Nashville maker market Porter Flea over the summer, and grabbed some of founder Sarah Mandell’s handmade jewelry there. Unsurprisingly, her Christmas ornament skills are just as on point, with unique needle-felted and custom laser-cut wood options that’ll definitely give your holiday decor a little extra something. You could go more traditional, like felted Gingerbread Men or engraved walnut reindeer. But we’re kinda drawn in by the slightly weirder options, like these leather and felt bat ornaments. If you’ve reluctantly moved on from Halloween decorating to Christmas, these might be for you too. Doesn’t look like she’ll be at the Holiday Flea this month, but you can snag her ornaments on Etsy.
Someone who will be at the Porter Flea Holiday Market in East Nashville December 9-10, however: Quiet Clementine, who’s coming this way from Arkansas with all kinds of cool ceramic work. Among that work: these hand-formed, hand-glazed, and hand-painted snowflake ornaments that are super festive, and extra stylish. They’re gilded with 22k gold accents, so all you need is the frankincense and myrrh and you’ve got yourself a Christmas party.
Are you less looking for new ornaments, more looking for a new Nashville home to set up your tree in? We’d love to help you find it! Give us a call, and let us know what you’re looking for!