The Nativities Collection

I am afraid that over the years I have “collected” too many things! I love dishes. We have way too many because I just can’t resist. In my defense though I do enjoy using them and setting nice tables for my guests. For many years I collected elephants. It began when I was 16 when a boyfriend gave me an elephant necklace. After having entirely too many and moving them all around the world, I kept out a few and put the rest away. And I collect nativities! I just LOVE my collection. I have nativities from Africa, from Asia, from South America, and from Europe. There are nativities with huts, nativities with ceramic intricate housing, and nativities with simple wood barns. Some are made of metal, some of clay, some ceramic, some glass, some wood, just about every medium you can think of. My collections became so vast that I began buying single pieces to add to a ceramic nativity set I made when I first married. That set has become so big, it takes an hour to set up! Then I came across the Master’s Handicrafts in Kyrgyzstan.

A colleague who knows about Threads by Nomad called and said, “Nell, I just learned of some artisans in Kyrgyzstan that might really interest you!” And they did. The people of Kyrgyzstan work with wool that they have processed themselves to make shoes, blankets, clothes, and more to keep warm. These artisans behind Master's Handicrafts have taken that skill along with their skills in embroidery to make nativity sets. The wool is softened and shaped into a figurine and embroidered. Each of the larger nativities also have a shelter made of wool that serves to store the nativity when it is put away. I knew I wanted one of these beautiful creations for myself. I did not yet have one made of wool!

As I began to investigate, I was also impressed with the group's resolve for fair trade, for seeking to give others a second chance at making a life for themselves, and for training until an artisan is skilled. These are the kinds of people Threads by Nomad seeks to support even as we offer our customers unique items that celebrate diversity through design. So this Christmas season, we hope you will enjoy shopping our Master’s Handicrafts nativities. They are now listed on our website and are available to purchase. They make wonderful gifts. Or, if you are like me, an excellent addition to your own Christmas décor!

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