It’s almost Christmas time! If you’ve ever been in Italy, you surely remember how we love Christmas decors. In this article we’ll give you some suggestions on how to decorate your home with Italian ornaments for Christmas time.
“Home is where your heart is!“…and where Christmas decors have to be made too! For Italian people, the house is the core of family life, the most important place where to feel safe and loved. The place where we spend time with our beloved ones during religious festivities.
That’s the reason why we care this much about Christmas decors.
How to decore your home with Italian ornaments on Christmas time
When we think about Italian houses on Christmas time, we think about huge Christmas trees, good looking nativity scenes and Christmas wreaths all over homes. But, which is our tradition, the one not contaminated by English or American styles?
Surely, we come from the “nativity scene tradition“: 40% of Italians still think about nativity scenes before anything else.
Displaying a nativity scene in Italian houses is a loved Christmas tradition for many Christian families. There are many varieties of nativities: from nativity scene sets with movable figures, to single-piece nativities. No matter what style Italian families choose, nativity scene sets often become treasured family keepsakes that are used every Christmas season. Read our focus on nativity scene at the bottom of this article.
If you want to buy Italian nativity scenes instead, religiousitalianart.com it’s the best place ever.
Other Italian ornaments for Christmas
After nativity scenes, Italians think about the best way to decorate their Christmas trees. In Italy, the first to decorate a Christmas tree was Queen Margherita in the second half of the nineteenth century at the Quirinale. Her idea spread quickly throughout the country and after the war the Christmas trees have conquered entire generations to become one of the symbols par excellence of the Christmas holidays.
In the modern times, when it comes to Italian ornaments we have characteristic balls made of glass or other materials generally covered with a colored and reflective paint or sprayed with silver, gold, or white.
Colored flakes are also very used together with festoons and pearly threads. Rows of electric mini-lights gradually replaced the use of candles.
The top of the tree is generally enriched by a ferrule, generally similar to balls in color, material and type of decorations, very often in the shape of a star, with reference to the comet.
Italian Christmas atmosphere begins when the melodies sung by bagpipers are heard in the streets. Shepherds who with their traditional clothes come down from the mountains and with their bagpipes sing Christmas music. We can often find them in nativity scenes or upon Christmas trees too.
The most important Italian ornament ever: the nativity scene
In 1223, St. Francis of Assisi, after returning from Palestine, decided to represent the scene of the nativity in Greccio, which he believed to be very similar to Bethlehem.
The first nativity scene was formed by a manger, the ox and the donkey. Only in the following centuries were added the Virgin Mary, Saint Joseph and Baby Jesus.
In the 18th century, Italian nativity scenes emerged among which the Neapolitan, Bolognese and Genoese traditions.
Specially Naples lived a real competition among noble families for those who had the most beautiful and luxurious nativity scene. In fact, they extended entire rooms of their palaces to represent the nativity and covered the statues with precious fabrics and jewels. The contribution of the Neapolitan tradition can be found in the inclusion of “popular” characters, taverns and other anachronistic elements within the Nativity scene.
Some nativities sculpted before 1600 are still visible in Italy.
The Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome hosts the oldest nativity scene in the world composed of single high relief statues made by Arnolfo di Cambio in 1289.
Did you find the idea to decorate your home with Italian ornaments? On our online store we offer many original solutions to decorate your home for Christmas time. Are you curious to see more?