After I shared my daughter’s Nutcracker-themed Christmas tree in my holiday home tour, I had several requests for more close up photos of the ornaments that we’ve used to decorate it, so today I thought I’d share those with you.
Most of these are from various Nutcracker performances throughout the US; it’s been a tradition of ours to attend annually no matter where we’re living and most companies sell ornaments as souvenirs. I have found most of them are available online, though, and they’re all linked at the end of the post, including her new 6′ flocked tree that was only $35 shipped.
As most of you know, my daughter has danced for years and pretty much lives at the studio. She’s in twelve Nutcracker performances throughout North Carolina with her company this year, which might make you wonder why we still go to a performance every year (my husband often asks this question…), but we enjoy seeing how different companies costume and choreograph the familiar story in unique ways. This year we’ll see the New York City Ballet perform Balanchine’s version when we visit right after Christmas. That’s everyone’s gift this year–no presents, but a trip to NYC. Not bad.
The ornaments are a mix of the familiar Nutcracker characters and candy-themed ornaments, since Clara visits the Land of the Sweets in Act II. I’ve got clear lights on the tree this year but have used pink in the past. (You can see the rest of her room here to see how I used the pink lights around her bed this year)
There are also lots and lots of ballet shoes of varying sizes on the tree, and ropes of pearl garland. The nutcracker ornaments are from the year she was in the Nashville Ballet’s production, but I’ve seen similar ones at Hobby Lobby.
When I add plain ornaments, I try to stick to a pastel palette, but I honestly don’t need much “filler” at this point!
The little tiara below is from years ago; I have some sweet photos of her dancing as a three year old with a pink sock on her right foot and a blue sock on her left foot–which is how her teacher taught them right from left–but it might be slightly embarrassing if I shared those.
Drosselmeyer is one of my favorites. FYI, the Kurt Adler brand ornaments are all very high quality; if you’ve never ordered them before do so with confidence.
While I try to buy ornaments corresponding to the roles she’s danced over the years, sometimes it’s really hard to find the Act II dancers outside of (pretty expensive) sets, so some of them aren’t on the tree–yet.
My sweet friend Laurie did find us a Snow Queen last year at the Kennedy Center and brought it to her performance as a good luck gift:
The DIY tree skirt is a pink practice tutu, and on top we’ve stacked some of her dead pointe shoes. I’ve mentioned this before, but for some reason dancers do not seem to be able to part easily with their worn out shoes. So now she just writes inside with a Sharpie if she used them for a role she’d like to remember, and we keep them. Next year we’ll build an addition onto the house to hold them all, but in the meantime, this is a good use for them!
So those are the details of the Nutcracker tree; sources are listed below as I promised.
Oh, and here’s a gratuitous plug: if you live near High Point, NC, then the High Point Ballet has seven more Nutcracker performances next week and tickets are available through the High Point Theatre. Those of you who danced yourselves or raised a dancer know that it’s just not Christmas without The Nutcracker (am I right?!). Amy and her daughter, also a dancer, are hoping to join us for a matinee, which would be so much fun!