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Making Christmas extra special: outside candle arches

Published: 09/24/2017

One of the things that make Christmas time so special are the beautiful lights that brighten up cities and villages across the country during the dark season. The city windows shine with lightchains and candle arches, while some home owners decorate their houses all around. Everyone creates their own little winter wonderland, which makes Christmas so festive.

 

For everyone who loves this Christmas tradition, the Erzgebirge-Palace has something very special this year: candle arches for outside, made of aluminium. They are available in widths from 100-300cm and are a lovely eye catcher for every Christmas house.

The set-up is super easy: Unbox the arch, stick the included ground-spits into the arch and attach both to the ground. Add the included chain of lights, and simply enjoy your beautiful Christmas arch.

Share that special Christmas atmosphere of the Ore Mountauns with your neighbours and make your festivities more beautiful with this extraordinary beauty from the Erzgebirge-Palast!


The 2017-summer novelties by Hubrig are released

Published: 12/27/2016

Figure of the year 2017 black currant

Figure of the year black currant

With the new year approaching, we are looking forward to the 2017 summer novelties by Hubrig Volkskunst. They are traditionally released in January, which brightens up this often dark and grey month. The family run company from Zschorlau in the Ore Mountains is famous for its vivid and colorful figurine series. The Hubrig Rabbits, the stunning country idyll, the cute beetles and the marvelous flower children all get lovely new additions which will inspire you. Assemblers will look forward to the new Hubrig figure of the year 2017, which is limited and therefore in high demand.

In Hubrig Rabbit’s Country, the focus is on education this year: Diligent Liesl and smart Fritz can not wait what teacher Lempel teaches them to become a great easter bunny one day. The figures are created with many cute details and are great for your Easter/spring decoration, but these figures in particular are also a cute present for every abecederian.

The Hubrig Beetle orchestra also has two new members: The frog girl with tambourine and the frog street organ player can not wait to join the quirky and fun group of the orchestra beetles. Like the other members of the orchestra, the two new figures are placed on an orange maple leaf and created with instruments that are stunningly rich in detail.

Flower child girl with sun hat

Flower child girl with sun hat

A new member of the flower children is the flower girl with sun hat. Like the other flower children, it is created in marvelous and joyful colors. The diversity of the summer’s flora is the theme of this popular series, which is seen as the counterpart of the winter children by Hubrig. There are additional meadows available to present your flower children in their natural environment. The flower child with sun hat holds a yellow sunflower and measures 11cm.

Many are excitedly awaiting the arrival of the new figure of the year 2017: This year, it is an autumn child with black currant which will complete the ‘Figures of the year’- collection. Black currant is a autumn fruit with beautiful colors and fits perfectly into the series which is mainly designed in warm earth tones.

Last but not least, one addition has been made to one of our favorite series: The country idyll collection portrays the beauty of country life in summer. The beautiful little figures enjoy planting, playing with their animals and taking care of their flowers. This year, Laura joins them. Her favorite hobby is it to push her little doll in her stroller around outside. She enjoys the beautiful sunny hours with her friends and her most beloved doll.

Check out all the new additions of Hubrig here – and join us in looking forward to the warmer season.


The variety of Christmas pyramids

Published: 12/13/2016

Pyramiden PalaceThe stunning art, the warm candle light, the soft movement of the whinged wheel – Christmas pyramids spread Christmas atmosphere unlike anything else. Many pyramids are given from one generation to the next and have become part of the family’s very own Christmas tradition.

Yet there is no product of the Ore Mountain handcraft that is so diverse: From tiny to large, traditional to modern, manual to electric: There are so many different kinds of Christmas pyramids that it is hard to decide which one is the best fit for your own holiday celebrations.

In the mid ages, there have already been pyramid-like constructions that were used during the dark months of winter. The main goal of these first pyramids – which were way more popular than Christmas trees back then – was to cast out the evil and to prevent mischief. In Christmas country, also known as the Ore mountains, the wooden pyramid has established itself as the common model. Don’t be fooled though: There are many variations and the pyramids differ in size, power source and of course in design.

Von myself - own knowledge and observations, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Von myself – own knowledge and observations, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

You can roughly classify six shapes of pyramids (see picture). The most common ones are the story pyramids. They can be little ones with only one floor up until the majestic six-floor pyramids, which are usually taller than one meter. Such stunning large pyramids are often the center piece of the Christmas room. It depends on the space available which pyramid is the best fit for you.

There are differences in the way the pyramid is run. It all begins with the mini pyramid which need nothing but the air of a radiator to get going. The warmth oft he heating is enough to turn the very light whinged wheel. What is missing here is the lovely light though. Still, they are great for office rooms and such.

You can also start small when it comes to natural candle light: Many of the one-tier models are run with tea candles and are perfect for windowsills.

Still pyramids with traditional wax candles are the most common though.. On the up to six platforms, Christmas as well as worldly scenes are presented. The longish candles create enough heat for the whinged wheel to rotate steadily and also makes the round platforms in the middle turn.

1tier pyramid winter children by Hubrig

1-tier pyramid winter children by Hubrig

Many clients decide to keep up with times though and buy an electric pyramid nowadays. This is mainly for safety reasons: Especially when small children or pets life in the same household, it is reassuring not to have an open flame around. Also when it comes to the dangers of a fire at home cause by inattention, electric candles certainly have their advantages. Thanks to modern technique, electric candles spread as much atmosphere as natural wax candles nowadays.

The designers also love to try out new ways and play with shapes and colors. Although a majority of the sold pyramids consists of traditional ones, new things are always in line. Some have become very successful, like the colorful pieces by Hubrig or the clean modern shapes by KWO.

Just like times, Christmas pyramid have moved on. For almost every taste and need, there is a perfect pyramid today. We can not wait what the manufacturers from the Ore Mountains present us with the next years.


The history of the Candle Arch

Published: 12/05/2016

Candle arch Since the shortness of the days made winter official, you can see them appearing in many windows throughout Germany: Illuminated candle arches. The wooden arches, carefully carved and equipped with natural or electric candles, bring a magical light and a lovely atmosphere to dark winter nights. How did it happen though that it was elaborately decorated arches with candles that became a tradition?

The origin of this custom is, as so many things in the region, the mining history oft he Ore Mountains. The miners had to spend the winter months pretty much completely in the dark. When their shift began, sun hadn’t risen yet. When they were done fort he done, it had already set. The desire to light is expressed in many Ore mountains inventions such as Christmas pyramids, advent candle holder or the candle arches.

It was also a miner’s event – the traditional last shift before Christmas called Mettenschicht – where a candle arch made its first public appearance. The first ones were made out of metal and showed mining and biblical scenes, such as the eviction of Adam and Eve.

Where the arch got its distinctive shape from is unclear. Some claim it is shaped like the entrance to the mines, some claim it is supposed to look like the nightly sky. It used to be tradition that the arches had to have an odd number of candles. Like that, one candle always was the center on the top of the arch.

Today, that’s not necessarily the case anymore. The ways of design and choice of motives have developed further and there are many more variations today than there used to be. Made entirely made out of wood today, it is especially the so-called „double-“ or „3D candle arches“ that are popular today. It consists of two layers of broad arches with the electric candles inbetween. They create an indirect, warm light loved by many.

Spectacular jig saw work is often used today to decorate the arches. They arouse the impression of a real forest surrounding the scenery in the middle. The Ore mountain forests, the Nativity scene and the little cities of the region are only a few examples of what inspires the carvers today.

One things hasn’t changed since the 18th centuries though: People still cherish and love the warm candlelight that brightens up their Christmas time.


Horseman of Olbernhau – Nutcracker on rocking horses

Published: 11/16/2016

Reiterlein Canva ENEvery year, it greets the visitors of Olbernhau’s famous Christmas market: The little horseman figure of Olbernhau. Together with a larger than life nutcracker and gingerbread lady, it has become the trademark of the toy maker region Ore mountains.

The success story of the riding nutcracker has its origin probably in a 1933 campaign of the German winter relief organization, which provided assistance for families in need. To raise funds, they used to sell little badges with motives changing every month. In 1935, Max Korb designed a badge with a nutcracker on a rocking horse. This badge was immensely successful and sold over 12 million times. It made the horseman nutcracker on his horse popular in all of Germany.

The very same, the larger than life figures of the horseman figure, a nutcracker and a gingerbread lady were created, which welcome guests to the Olbernhau Christmas market up until today. The figures also represent the whole region, also called the ‚toy maker land’.

Today, it’s especially manufacturer HoDreWa Legler which has gained a reputation for high quality horseman figures. The traditional classics are created in a very skilled and careful way. If you life one of the heavy figures, you can feel the appreciation for the old handicraft and the raw material of wood.

If you don’t make it to Olbernhau’s famous Christmas market anytime soon, you can always add this timeless classic to your home: They are available in sizes from 14cm up to 100cm.


A journey into times long gone with the workshops of Flade

Published: 07/01/2016

Figure of the year 'Blue flower' and flax haired child with lamb

Figure of the year ‘Blue flower’ and flax haired child with lamb

With the lovely figures by the workshops of Flade, we take you back into the beautiful times of your childhood. The figures tell wonderful tales of long gone days in a beautiful and unique way. This is exactly why they have a gained a large group of fans admirers over the years, with an upward trend.

Company-owner Kerstin Flade-Drechsel is the daughter of company-founder Helmut Flade. Being born in the toy land Ore mountains with a designer as a father, creativity came naturally to her. It was and still is the raw material of wood which allowed her to express herself in the best way. She also preserved the ability to look at the world with the wondering eyes of a child. Her creativty combined with an open mindset result in an extraordinary, artistic work.

The most knows collection is the flax haired angel collection. The little angels come in a white gows and carry hair made out of original Ore mountain flax. They have a lot of stories to tell and can be found in all kinds of situations. Being only 5cm (or 2inch) tall, it is amazing how thoroughly they are processed and how many details they contain. It was nine angels that formed the original first angel group in 1990, today there are more than ninety different flax haired angels. Every angel brings something that means Christmas for us: A nutcracker, for example, or baked goods or a little table bell. The angels express everything we love about Christmas: A feeling of warmth, security and joy.

Flax haired angels by Flade

Flax haired angels by Flade

When it’s warmer outside, the flax haired children make their appearance: Created in tender colors, they bring summer life in the country into your home. They remind you of the beautiful, easy going days of a childhood summer. Back then, it was one’s greatest joy to spend the long days outside with your best friends. No smartphones, no internet, just a whole day filled with sun, fun and friends. This is exactly the kind of atmosphere that is brought back to your memory by the Flade flax haired children.

True collector’s item are the Flade music boxes. Designed in the typical style of Flade, they present beautiful sceneries on a small platform. The focus lies of course on a flax haired child or angel. They are surrounded by carefully chosen accessoires and sceneries. This pictures is surrounded by a sweet, lovely melody. The music boxes bring back memories and let you forget about today for a little while.

We are very happy to be able to present the Flade collection to you from now on. Take Kerstin Flade-Drechsler’s way to watch the world as an inspiriation and discover the world around you like you did back then: With an open mind, confidence and a lot of joy.


A long journey – first large Kolbe candle arch in the United States

Published: 06/09/2016

Safely arrived

Safely arrived

They are magnificent pieces of craftsmanship and combine everything, that makes the Ore mountain art so special: Candle arches by Klaus Kolbe are simply masterpieces. The manufactury manages it to transform a whole world into their light arches. Countless little stories are told by the moving figures, supported by a gorgeous background.

Candle Arch Christmas market of Dresden

Candle Arch Christmas market of Dresden

Since the arches are large and heavenly equipped with elaborate mechanics, transporting them – especially when it comes to crossing an ocean – can surely a challenge. We did accept the challenge though and provided our costumer in Florida, USA, with the arch of his dreams.

The arch in action - with the happy owner.

The arch in action – with the happy owner.

Our costumer service expert Sascha Huhn took care of organizing the whole shipping process and made it possible for the arch to travel the long distance. As you can see, our client is very happy to be in possession of such a unique gem. If you’re looking for more information on this kind of candle arches, look here.


A visit from Santa Claus

Published: 01/12/2016

A delayed visit by Santa Claus was reason to celebrate for Bärbel G. from Leipzig. She was the winner of our wish list-raffle before Christmas. Her wishes were delivered to her shortly after Christmas. The wish list included the smoker nutcracker maker by Ulbricht, the smoker sweety by Ulbricht, the candle holder advent red with Christmas tree and four angels by Zeidler and the colorful winter children pyramid by Hubrig. We are very glad that we could make Bärbel’s Christmas even more beautiful.

We also want to take the chance to thank you all for your lovely mails. We read them all and loved every single one of it.

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The last shift before Christmas – the Mettenschicht

Published: 12/14/2015

Bernd März / Tourismusverein Erzgebirge e.V.

Bernd März / Tourismusverein Erzgebirge e.V.

There are countless customs in the Christmas land of the Ore Mountains. The natives love to cultivate and maintain these customs, and especially around Christmas they cherish to travel back in time a little. One of these traditions is the so called Mettenschicht, the last shift of the miners before Christmas.

Like so many things in the Ore Mountains, the Mettenschicht has its origin in mining. The last shift before the festivities ended earlier than regular ones. The miners were called out of the mines with a knocking signal by their foreman. They gathered in the administrative building of the mine, which was usually decorated with candles and fir branches. There, a sort of service was held: A sermon was held, songs were sung and miners that had passed away were remembered.

After that, the miners had a meal together. Usually, good traditional fare was served such as potato salad, sausages or lentil soup. When they had finished, they shared a herb liquor and cigar to conclude the night.

Since real mining is extinct nowadays, the Mettenschichten are usually held for reasons of preservation and for tourists. Visiting mines such as the Röhling-Stolln or the Mine Herkules Frisch Glück still hold Mettenschichten during the advent time. The visitors can experience folk music from the Ore mountain first hand and enjoy a typical meal like in old times. Some mines offer this tradition on several weekends during Advent, some still have their Mettenschicht strictly on the last weekend before Christmas. A collection of all the Mettenschicht dates can be found here. And if you love too far away to join one of the gatherings, you might want to watch this video to get impressions of this lovely tradition:


The sitting smokers – edge stool smokers by KWO

Published: 12/10/2015

Smoker edge stool coffee lover

Smoker edge stool coffee lover

For many Germans, Christmas and incense smokers belong together. The cute fellows have been spreading their lovely scent since the 19th century throughout German homes, and many connect the scent of them with the Christmas of their childhood.

Smokers all work pretty much on the same principle: Their inner part is hollowed out, this is where there incense cone is placed. The smoke escapes through the mouth hole and gives the impression of the figure smoking its pipe.

Nowadays, there are smokers in nearly every design. There are Santas, dragons and even houses: The Ore mountain manufacturers really let their fantasy play.

One very smart idea came from the workshops of KWO: With their edge stool smokers, they have developed a series of smokers who love to sit in your home and follow your family’s life from there. They sit on the sill, the chimney piece or even the table’s edge and spread their wonderful scent from there. They look a party of the family when watching your everyday life.

Smoker edge stool cook

Smoker edge stool cook

The warmth and conviviality of these smokers is what makes them so popular. A fan favorite is the coffee lover and the saxony coffee lady. They are an ironic allusion on the Saxons, who are known to be crazy about their coffee. During the 1970s, there was the so called ‚Coffee-crisis’. The government tried to stretch the coffee with other ingredients. Widespread public protests followed since nothing comes inbetween the Saxons and their coffee. The edge stool smoker coffee lover comes in different sizes, up to a large 23 inch version.

Many also love to gift someone with the edge stool smoker cook, also available as cook with goose. It sits in the kitchen shelf and watches all the cooking. Afterwards, it helps to chase away bad smells.

The KWO edge stool smokers are an unique present, which blends in perfectly with your living surroundings. There are so many different smokers that the right one for you certainly already waits for you.


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