Gina is a collectibles dealer who has an extensive personal collection of holiday villages, leather-bound books, and Disney figurines.
The holiday season is around the corner, and if you're like me, you're excited for mostly one thing . . . setting up your Christmas village! Well, and your tree and other decorations and, ok, ok, spending time with family and such.
But let's get back to Christmas villages!
For over 10 years, I've been collecting Christmas village houses and accessories. Nothing gets me into the holiday spirit more than setting up my village every year (yes, it's more fun than setting up a tree—at least to me anyway!)
Every year, I purchase at least one village house and several accessories. My collection is definitely growing to the point where I need multiple tables for set-up and now am considering getting a custom platform made.
There are several major manufacturers of Christmas village sets, houses, and accessories. There's Lemax (my favorite which makes up the majority of my collection), Department 56, and Hawthorne Village (from the Bradford Exchange).
Walmart and The Home Depot also have their own brands of village houses which are much less expensive.
The Lemax Collection
When I saw this year's Lemax collection, I was more than excited and I may have even squealed with delight. There are about 87 new houses from a variety of collections and also a bunch of accessories.
How am I supposed to decide with that much variety?
After mulling over the list of 2017 releases, I've come up with my top six favorite houses.
There are eight collections and I chose my favorites from just two of them—Caddington Village and Sugar N Spice.
What are the other collections?
- Plymouth Corners
- Harvest Crossing
- Jukebox Junction
- Vail Village
- Santa's Wonderland
Trust me, it was extremely hard to pick just these, but I think you'll see why I did.
The Caddington Collection has houses from the Victorian Era with exquisite detail and color
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Vintage Grind Coffee Company
This coffee company is almost too cute for words. It's exceptionally detailed with revolving gears, a coffee conveyor belt, moving bags of coffee, a loading dock, and a little coffee shop.
This is a "sights and sounds" house which means there are animated effects with motion, exterior lights with illumination, and music and sounds.
Bell's Gourmet Popcorn Factory
I adore how different this house concept is. I would not expect a popcorn factory to fit in a Victorian Christmas collection, but oh does it work!
Again, Lemax does not skimp on details with a big spinning popcorn bucket, a moving popcorn conveyor belt, and blowing mini styrofoam balls that mimic popping corn.
This popcorn factory is also a "sights and sounds" house which means there are animated effects with motion, exterior lights with illumination, and music and sounds.
I just love the look of this tall tower porcelain, lighted house. The colors, windows, stairs, and thatched roof make it fun and adorable.
This house is not quite a busy as some of the other houses, but that's one of the reasons why I love it so much. It's simple and creative.
This house is a little different from most. It's a facade, which means its only three-dimensional on the front side. The back side is flat which makes it perfect for leaning up against a wall or for display in a smaller space.
And different is a good thing since English Lane is so very charming. Its a beautiful representation of a Victorian Era street with a pub, shoppe, and lovely chimneys.
I love the colors and the illuminated interior scene is just so cute.
The Sugar N Spice Collection is sweet and whimsical filled with gingerbread houses and candy shops
Yule Log Cabin
Cabins have always been my all-time favorite village house and this log cabin definitely makes the cut. A mix of gingerbread house and log cabin, it absolutely screams Sugar N Spice!
The detail of the candy canes and snow capped roof is a delight. But my favorite feature is definitely the door detailing.
I'm in love with Cocoa Cups which is a "sights and sounds" piece with animated, spinning tea cups, flashing Christmas lights, and music. Also, the sign board lights up.
It's super colorful and whimsy and just reminds me of the fun and care-free ambiance of the holiday season.
Here's a Look at More 2017 Houses at Michaels!
Where You Can Find Lemax Christmas Villages
Mills Fleet Farm
The houses and accessories of Department 56 reside in several collections. Some villages have a similar style to the Lemax Collection—such as the Victorian England inspired Dickens Village.
But what I loved most about Department 56 is there very different collections like Mickey's Village, Peanuts Village, the Grinch Village, and Margaritaville.
Department 56 has a TON of collections including...
- Alpine Village
- Christmas in the City
- Dickens Village
- First Frost
- Heritage Village
- Holiday in the Woods
- Holy Land
- New England
- North Pole
- Snow Village
- Christmas Story
- Disney Village
- Disney Princess
- Nightmare Before Christmas
- Art and Architecture
So as you can see, there's definitely something for everyone at Dept 56.
Christmas in the City captures the excitement of city life during the holiday season.
This cathedral is my absolute favorite of the 2017 Dept 56 collection. Its actually a 30th anniversary edition of the original St. Nicolas Cathedral which was also stunning.
This lighted village house comes signed and is a numbered limited edition.
Mickey's Village combines the North Pole, Christmas, and Disney in a whimsical collection of houses and characters.
I absolutely love all things Disney, so combine Christmas villages AND Disney and well, you've stolen my heart.
This shoppe is bright and retro-inspired with some adorable details like wreaths, snow-capped roof, and an adorable Mickey logo.
You can find Department 56 houses at department56.com
My 1st Year at Collecting (Ok, I Bought a Lot to Start Things off Right That Year!)
Sharlee on October 15, 2017:
I really enjoyed my visit. I love decoration for the Holidays. And can see you do too... Nice work