Holiday home | The British Newspaper Archive Blog


Holiday home

Can there ever be too many Christmas decorations? A home offers ample opportunity for dressing it up for the holidays, and we’ve found both traditional and unconventional Christmas decorations highlighted in The British Newspaper Archive. Which would you use in your own home?

Traditional decorations

Christmas decor
Christmas decor | The Sketch | 4 December 1957
finishing touches
Finishing touches | Britannia and Eve | 1 December1950
Decor for Christmas
Christmas decor | Britannia and Eve | 1 December 1942

Unconventional decorations

Jazz up your Christmas decorations with some unconventional touches. The Tatler highlighted a Christmas mobile in their 8 November 1957 issue: ‘Snow crystals airily floating in space or gaily coloured glass Christmas tree balls twisting and turning and changing their pattern and colour relationships, can give us a delightfully contemporary interpretation of the traditional method of decorating our homes at Christmas’.


Christmas mobile
A Christmas mobile | The Tatler | 8 November 1957

If you find yourself charmed by the idea of a Christmas mobile, you can make your own! For making your own mobile, the article recommends the following tools and materials: ‘A pair of round-nosed pliers which also cut wire, some 14- and 16-gauge wire, a tube of glue )some of the modern synthetic glues are very good because they are quick drying, and not messy to work with), an awl for making holes and a sharp knife for curring out cardboard shapes if you intend to use cardboard; and such elements as you decide to use to make up your mobile’. The article goes on to detail specifically how to construct the mobiles.

christmas mobile
Christmas mobile and other decorations | The Tatler | 8 November 1957

If a festive mobile doesn’t suit your decorating needs, perhaps a calennig will do. A calennig is ‘a symbol, an ornament, [and] has the stark contemporary look, but its origin is older than Christmas itself’. Originally a pagan symbol of fruitfulness, The Tatler has depicted here a ‘Christianized do-it-yourself form’. The hazel rods represent the Holy Trinity; the candle the light of the world; the corn ears, holly, and evergreen the fruits of the earth, and the orange the earth.

A calennig for Christmas | The Tatler | 24 December 1958

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