Since I was a little girl, my mom has been gifting me pieces for my holiday village, and it’s become one of the most special parts of this season.
It all started when she began collecting these small, festive pieces and putting them on top of the piano in my childhood home around Christmas each year. I would count down the hours until it was dark enough for her to turn their lights on and I’d be fascinated by the small village and how they had their own “lives.” I was a highly-imaginative child (and now I’m just a highly-imaginative adult) and I always liked to think these miniatures came to life after I went to bed, and they really cut down Christmas trees or drank in the taverns.
When my sister got married and moved into her own home, my mom gave her most of the original village (keeping a couple of them for me), and from there on out, there was a new figurine or town piece under the tree or in my stocking that tailored to my personal taste.
The train station and the schoolhouse were from the original collection, but since then, I’ve added an academy of arts (in honor of my six years of musical theater and three years of ballroom dance). There’s a feline pet shop (since I’m a total cat lady). She gifted me a ski bar (this one may have been the item she gave me the year I turned 21). I have Santa Claus, a skating rink, a covered bridge, some adorable figurines, and a couple getting engaged (totally precious). I got an Airstream a couple of years back (because I caught the travel bug)! My latest addition was a coffee shop that I absolutely adore (since, duh, The Espresso Edition) but I haven’t had the chance to photograph it yet. Hopefully, that’ll happen soon!
Setting up this village has become one of the most special parts of my holiday season, and after I got married, getting the opportunity to bring it to life in my new home was a dream come true.
faux snow | similar bridge | similar airstream | shopping figurines | similar pet shop | similar train station | similar schoolhouse | similar ski lodge | similar theatre | gifting Santa Claus | similar skating rink
A holiday village is an amazing addition to any home during Christmas time (and beyond).
You can purchase pieces for these villages and make them a year-round thing if you’d like. There are so many options available. I will say the most popular pieces are for Halloween and Christmas, but you can stick to a theme, a holiday, a set of characters (they have ones for Disney, Peanuts, etc.) or you can just do whatever! I think one of the most important parts of decorating your village is always going to be accessorizing. Some of my favorite items are the Christmas trees, the fake snow, and the tiny characters. They add such life to what would otherwise be a row of small houses on top of my entertainment center each holiday season. Make sure to spice up your town with smaller items that bring you cheer.
Something to note: Lemax is my favorite brand for these items, but they can be a bit pricey (though Department 56 – maker of the Dickens Village – is marginally more expensive). However, they’re worth the splurge if you’re looking for incredible quality and long-lasting collectibles. If you’d like to save some money, St. Nicholas Square is also an excellent option, or you can look online to discover more brands!
These villages make incredible gifts, and clearly, they’re excellent for traditions as well. I’ll be honest, I don’t see them very often in millennial homes, but I think that should change. This may have been something that was passed down to me, but it’s so festive and fun to put up each year, and it’s extra special because it was something my mom, my sister, and I all love together. My sister’s collection now takes up multiple shelves in her home since she has so many pieces, and when my grandfather passed away, my mom got his Dickens Christmas set, which is incredibly meaningful. We each have our own spin on our sets, but one thing remains the same for all three of us: we love our holiday villages.
We have a train set with a village that goes around our tree. It’s quite the set up, many of the train cars are collector’s items. The kids love it xo Jaimie http://www.jaimietucker.com
THIS makes me happy.❤️ I’m looking forward to maybe getting a new piece for my Dicken’s Village this year and setting up Pap-Pap’s train set. Your nephews will love it!
Love this adorable village and the story/memories behind it! My mom is big on Christmas villages and she has gotten me and one of my sisters into them as well. My collection is small but growing. I can’t wait to get it out this season!
I love your Christmas Village collection! Such a great tradition and I always love looking at friends when they have these.
Oh you have a fabulous collection! I would love to start one as well!
This is adorable! We never did this at my house but it’s definitely I would love to do when I have my family. It’s just so cute! It also looks super homey.
These are so adorable! Thank you for sharing these ideas.
This is such a sweet tradition! I love that you can look back and know your mom handpicked so many of these pieces for you.
Absolutely love this tradition! My best friends mom had an extensive collection and I always looked forward to seeing it each year. So festive 🙂
Aw I love this so much! My grandpa had so many of these! My husband wants to start collecting too!
I’ve always thought holiday villages are so cute and I love seeing how people decorate with them…so fun! If I had the space, I would totally have a Disney themed one! xoxo, Sarah
I love these pieces so much but I hate how expensive they can be! I feel like these really capture the holiday spirit by having these neatly placed around your home.
I absolutely love this idea! I really like Christmas traditions that involve collecting new items every year. In my family, the tradition is to collect a new Nutcracker every year. We lay them out much like a Christmas village.
AHH I love this! My tradition with the husband is that we collect picture frame Christmas ornaments and we put in one picture we took together from the year. I LOVE the Christmas village idea! We do have a nativity scene though.
I love a vintage holiday decor collection! I added a ceramic colored tree to my collection last year and I’m obsessed, but I don’t have any village pieces yet! Love how cozy these are. Need!!
This is so cute, I love all the little details in this village like the kid making a snow angel and (of course lol) the couple getting engaged!
That is so sweet that your mom would gift you pieces since you were little! This is such a fun and neat tradition to start with your future kiddos. Love the village, so sweet!
Your Christmas village is adorable! We had one growing up and I would love to have one. That’s such a sweet tradition that your mom gifts you the pieces!
So cute! I love going to the local garden centre where they set up a full village using these! Unfortunately I don’t have the space for it in my house 🙁
I love that it’s been passed down through your family! That is so special!
This is so sweet and nostalgic for me! I personally don’t have a village, but mom does. It seems like every surface would be covered around the holidays. Brings back lots of cozy memories! Thanks for sharing!
Oh wow I love your Christmas Village! We had one that I would set up as a little girl and my parents just gifted them back to me to enjoy with my own daughter. I’ll have to start collecting new pieces for her to enjoy. Thanks for sharing your insight!
You have an amazing collection! My mom collects beautiful pieces as well. I’m hoping to start soon 🙂 Thanks for the tips!
What a sweet Christmas tradition!! Traditions like these are the best part about holidays. Your holiday village is so cute!
I want to do this for my kids! Its such a sweet and fun idea!
Oh what a sweet tradition! We don’t have a village because we don’t have the space in our apartment to display it but my husband and I always get an ornament in our travels through the year for Christmas! We have several from Hawaii but also a few from Korea, Spain, and England. That’s our little tradition!
We love having a holiday village set up!