Friday, April 11, 2014

Ornament Review: Santa's Armoire - 2010 Hallmark Ornament


Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Beautiful detail from all the Hallmark artists
Cons: Slight tip back, but it's a minor issues
The Bottom Line:
Peak behind the door
Enjoy art inside and out
Artistic delight



Loving Work of Art from the Keepsake Artists

2010 was the year I started collecting Hallmark ornaments seriously.  It was also a year they had artist signings around the country.  I couldn't make one, so I wasn't going to collect the special piece they created just for that signing - Santa's Armoire.  However, after attending an event of my own and starting to collect the unofficial series of Santa and Mrs. Claus's furniture, I broke down and back collected it.  I'm so glad I did.

Like the other big event pieces, this piece was a collaborative effort from all the Hallmark ornament sculptors.  A few worked on the overall design while many of them worked on little pieces and details.  The result is fantastic, and I treasure this work of art.

The 2010 event piece is painted brown and looks like it is made from wood.  It is several inches high, which makes it a bit big for an ornament but it allows you to see all the details.  There are decorative designs on the top and bottom.  The shelves on the sides hold toys from drums to penguins to teddy dears and dolls.  But the detail I love the most on the outside is the painting on the door.  Actually, painting isn't the right word since it has texture to it.  More like a relief picture if you will.  Anyway, it's of Santa and his reindeer flying over a pretty, snowy landscape.

And yes, the door opens.  Inside, you'll find a mirror on the door, Santa's boots, coat, and hat, a cute cat curled up, and a couple more toys.

I really could look at this ornament for hours.  Every time I do, I notice a new detail in the design work or one of the toys that makes me smile.  While it is bigger than your average ornament, it's still under six inches tall, which means that how they worked all those details into this ornament still surprises me.

The armoire is resting on four feet.  They are perfectly level, so it is no surprise that the ornament can be put out in a display anywhere without fear of falling over.  With all the detail on it (especially if you leave the door open), I'd want it on something that won't get bumped often, but that would be my only concern.

I have hung mine on my tree the last couple of years.  You'll find the hook behind the arch at the top of the armoire.  The ornament actually tips back a little when hung, but by the time you get it in the branches of a tree, you'd never notice.  And while you are up there, take a look at the friend hiding up at the top.

This ornament proved to be so popular that in 2011, a white repaint was released to members of the Keepsake Ornament Club.  Personally, I liked the original wood color better, so I waited until I could find a reasonably priced copy of the original.

And I'm glad I did.  The 2010 Santa's Armoire is a beautiful piece of artwork I am proud to hang on my tree.

Original Price: $34.95

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