Snowbabies

Snowbaby Collectables

We have put some of the Snowbaby figurines on the website for your convenience , but next time you are passing the shop, I invite you to come in and see them and hold them and like me you will fall in love with this cute collectable. They come in a rage of classical and contemporary poses and will be a lovely addition to your home.

Each Snowbaby piece is carefully designed to ensure a sentiment of love, friendship and inspiration. Each piece tells its own story. It’s the story that makes each Snowbabies figurine special and unique.

They have extraordinary level of detail, from the shiny twinkles in their eyes to the rosy blush on their cheeks, each and every Snowbabies porcelain figurine is assembled and painted by hand and given the utmost care from start to finish.

Snowbabies are a collection designed by artist Kristi Jensen Pierro All product is supplied in branded sleeved packaging.

These collectables have been very popular since we introduced the collection in Autumn 2015, so much so that we and our supplier ran out of stock of many of the more popular figurines before Christmas.

Claire

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If you have the time read below about the history of the Snowbaby and I guarantee you’ll look at Snowbabies in a whole new light!

 

History

Snowbabies were created as reusable cake toppers in the 1890s by Johann Moll, a German confectioner, based on early nineteenth century sugar dolls used as Christmas decorations. They were originally manufactured by Hertwig and Company, but other porcelain factories in Germany began creating the figurines soon after.

Snowbabies were initially only sold in Germany, but in the 1900s German manufacturers began exporting them to England and the United States. Between 1900 and 1930, Snow Babies grew in popularity in England where they were used as cake decorations, and the United States where they were used as Christmas decorations.

German manufacturing of Snowbabies stopped again at the start of World War II, and American demand for the product dropped. Snow Babies had resurgence in popularity in 1987, when the American company Department 56 began to manufacture replicas of the original Snowbaby designs.

 

Design

Snowbabies are small figurines made from slipcast porcelain (a technique for making articles not suited for a wheel), depicting a child dressed in a one-piece snowsuit. The hardened porcelain is coated with “slip” containing grog to imitate the texture of snow, which is then was fired and painted.

Grog, also known as firesand and chamotte, is a ceramic raw material. It has high percentage of silica and alumina. It can be produced by firing selected fire clays to high temperature before grinding and screening to specific particle sizes.

Pre-World War I

Before World War I, Snow Babies ranged from 12 to 16 centimeters in size and depicted children participating in winter activities like skiing, ice skating, and sledding. The figurines had highly detailed faces, and the paint was fired onto the porcelain so that the color would be longer lasting. Figurines were made with different pastel colors, and some were left all white except for face painting  (see the picture above).

Post-World War I

When Snowbaby production resumed after the war, the figurines made were smaller, usually ranging from 2.5 to 7 cm in size. Although the new paint used came in vibrant primary colours, Snow Babies had less facial detail than previous models; the paint was also less durable and prone to flaking off. Models in more varied poses were made, including children singing Christmas carols, riding polar bears, and building snowmen. New characters were also designed, and included Santa Claus, elves, penguins and dogs.  The popularity of Snowbabies declined for several decades then in the late 1980s an American company called Department 56 began producing a new line of Snow Babies in Taiwan.  And the rest is history….