Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Ornament Review: Fieldstone Church - Candlelight Services #6 - 2003 Hallmark Ornament

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Details in the sculpt
Cons: Colors a little too bright in the windows
The Bottom Line:
Ed Seale leaves us
And Candlelight Services
With one more good church

Ed Seale Contributes One Last Ornament with the Fieldstone Church

When you take the time to really look at a series of ornaments, you can begin to see an artist's style and signature come through.  That's certainly been the case for me with the Candlelight Services series.  Ed Seale sculpted five of the first six in the series, and Fieldstone Church is his last ornament in the series.  It has some touches that are all his.

The church itself is once again a small, one room affair that is fairly rectangular.  From the front of the ornaments, you see stairs leading up to the front door.  There's a tower off to the right, and only the steeple goes higher than the roof of the main part of the church.  There are a couple of evergreen trees on either side of the front door, and you can see 2003 in a large stone in the tower, representing the year this ornament first came out.  There isn't much around the church on the sides, and in the back you will find Ed's initials in the snow base the church sits on.

The church itself, like the rest of the ornament, is made out of plastic, but it is carved to look like stone.  There are various sizes and shapes in there, so it isn't anything uniform.  The roof looks like wood shingles to me; you can even see the wood grain if you look closely.

As with the rest of the series, the base is large and flat, so if you want to display them on a bookcase, you can do that with no problem.  The brass hook to hang the ornament is just front of center at the peak of the roof.  The ornament actually tips slightly to the right; the tower must be heavier than the rest of the ornament.  However, if you stick a string of lights into the ornament, it will change things.

And that's the entire purpose of this series.  The back has a hole in it designed for a bulb from a traditional string of lights.  The new, energy efficient lights don't produce quite the glow that these need to fully light up.  When you stick a light in there, you'll see that most of the windows are made from a thin, almost clear plastic and light up.

This is where Ed's signature really comes through.  The windows are bright colors, mostly yellow with some reds and greens thrown in.  To me, they look a little too bold and give the ornament a slight cartoony feel.  It's actually toned down from some of the earlier ornaments in the series, but it is still there.  I do still like the ornament, but when compared to some of the later ornaments, it's not quite as good as it could be.

This is sixth in a series from Hallmark, you'll find the number six in a Christmas tree on the bottom of the base as well as copyright information and the ornament's serial number.

Since an artist usually sticks with a series until it ends or they retire, I suspect that Ed Seale must have retired at this point, making the Fieldstone Church part of his swan song year.  While not the best in the series, I do still enjoy his final entry for Candlelight Services.

Be sure to check out the other ornaments in the Candlelight Services series.

Original Price: $18.95

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