If you were a child of the 60’s, 70’s or even early 80’s, you might just remember a few of the great classic Christmas decorations listed below!

Mary and I have a tradition of decorating for Christmas the day after Thanksgiving.

Every year, we put on a few of our favorite classic holiday movies, and make a day of decorating the house inside and out. See : The Farm Decorated at Christmas

Classic Christmas Decorations
Although not a “decoration” – I still remember my mom’s classic set of metal cut-out cookie cutters she brought out every year to make her Christmas cookies.

This year, during our annual decorating, we somehow found ourselves deep in conversation about childhood Christmas memories.

It brought back a flood of memories for us both. Especially when it came to remembering all of those cool, and maybe not-so-cool Christmas decorations from our early years.

So we thought today we would list a few of our favorites, and ask readers to share any they can remember as well in the comments section at the end of the article.

Here is to hoping a few of our memories of classic Christmas decorations ring true to your childhood as well!

Classic Christmas Decorations Remembered From Our Childhood

#1 Bubble Lights

Who doesn’t remember the oh-so-incredible bubble light strands that used to light up Christmas trees? Both of us can recall having these fascinating strands on our childhood trees.

classic Christmas decorations
I loved our old bubble lights growing up

I still remember the magic of watching the liquid inside begin to bubble up as the lights warmed. I also remember half of them not working, but hey, let’s keep this a happy!

we actually found a few cool retro sets that are still available on-line. I am pretty sure they may have to make their way back onto a future Christmas tree for us.    Product Link : Retro Bubble Light Set

Icicle Strands

These perhaps were my mom’s least favorite of all decorations. Especially when it came to decorating the tree!

classic Christmas decorations
Remember the individual tinsel? It would take forever to put on – and forever to take off!

They came in big packs of long strands, and were used to make “icicles” on the tree. The idea was to put them a few at a time on the tree to let it shimmer.

I, however, remember my brother and I getting bored with the decorating chore and simply throwing huge chunks on the tree. And of course, getting the familiar “that is not how they are supposed to go on” reprimand from our mom.

The other thing about icicles,  I remember finding them everywhere for months on end well after Christmas.

Of course, lighted garland strands have now taken the place of the chore of icicle decorating.

Large Christmas Bulb Strands

Yes, LED lights are incredibly safe, energy efficient and bright. But call us old-fashioned, we still remember fondly the over-sized Christmas bulb strands from yesteryear.

Classic Christmas Decorations

There was something so big and colorful about them, and I loved the big individual screw in sockets that made them feel like regular light bulbs.

And yes, the best part was that if one light went out, they really all did go out!  We both still remember getting the job of screwing in bulb after bulb trying to find the one that was out!

The Train Around The Tree

Although no-one really knows for sure how it started, this classic holiday tradition still exists today in many households.

Who wants to put a tree skirt or blanket at the bottom of the tree when you can have a train circling below!

Classic Christmas decorations
The old train around the tree is still a classic Christmas decoration.

Toy trains became popular in the early 1900’s. And it right around that time that folks began putting them around their trees.

We always had a train that we got out at Christmas every year, but we never put our train around the tree. Thinking back, it was probably because our parents didn’t want us playing around the tree and toppling it over. Probably a wise idea!

Pull Tab Christmas Calendars

It didn’t take us long during our trip down memory lane to remember the Christmas calendars. The old countdown calendars where you open up a little cardboard door every day to reveal a photo. Or if you were really lucky, maybe your’s had some type of treat behind each door!

classic Christmas calendar

The Christmas Snow Globe

Who didn’t have the Christmas snow globe that when shaken, erupted in a big snowstorm falling over some Christmas scene inside of the glass.classic Christmas decorations

Although the globes still exist today, I can’t ever quite find the “real” heavy glass one that I remember was placed on top of our stereo entertainment center each and every Christmas. Yep, the kind of stereos that were a piece of furniture – and had a record player and an 8-track player. Wow!

Ceramic Christmas Trees

And on top of the other side of the stereo there was always a classic ceramic Christmas tree.

I remember it well! Every single year, one of my “decorating” duties as a child was to pull out the green ceramic Christmas tree, and set about installing what seemed to be an endless amount of colored plastic bulbs.

classic Christmas decorations
Maybe the most well-known of the classic Christmas decorations – the ceramic Christmas tree!

The funny thing is – at 93 – my mom still puts that out every year on that same incredible old stereo.

One Final Memory on Classic Christmas Decorations…

For me, the best memory is of our big wooden Santa that went up every year. It was made and given to my parents as a housewarming gift in the early 70’s.

Year after year, my dad would put it up between two big pine trees in front of the barn. And after he passed, my brother and I, and then other family members would put it up as well.

Classic Christmas decorations
Santa in front of our house – still going strong!

It made its way through the family – and I am very proud to now put it up at our farm every year as well. 48 years and going strong – now that is a decoration that lasts!  See : Santa Returns Home

Here is to hoping for a wonderful Holiday season for all –  Jim and Mary. Please feel free to share with all your own memories below in the comments!


Remembering Classic Christmas Decorations From The 60’s,70’s And 80’s

10 thoughts on “Remembering Classic Christmas Decorations From The 60’s,70’s And 80’s

  • December 10, 2018 at 5:47 am

    We had all of these, but I had forgotten. Thank you for this memory jog.

  • December 7, 2018 at 1:05 am

    WAY before the ‘elf on the shelf’, we had an elf that was part of our holiday decorations, that creeped out me and my brother, and my own kids as well, LOL! He was dressed in a shiny gold outfit, had a plastic face, and eyes that seemed to follow you…He was unfortunately lost, in a series of moves, which is sad, because I would love to have been able to share him with the grands, and prove that the ‘elf on the shelf’ is a lot older than many think!

  • December 6, 2018 at 7:13 pm

    I also have bubble lights on my tree each year and use many of the ornaments my parents purchased in 1946 as newlyweds.

  • December 6, 2018 at 12:16 pm

    I remember so many of these things, but I remember when the tinsel was so heavy that it would pull the branch down. They contained lead back in those days until it was identified that lead would make people sick. That is when it was changed to what tinsel is today. I would say that was beck in the 60’s when I was still a teen. You couldn’t thorw it in handfuls back them or it could weight the tree branches sadly… LOL!!!

  • December 6, 2018 at 11:19 am

    Thanks for the memories. I still have two strings of bubble lights, bought way back in the 70’s that go on the tree every year, and most of them still work. I also still use the big old lights, I just keep replacing the burned out ones with extras I have. As well I have a ceramic tree, that not only lights up, but plays a song. My loving God-mother gave it to me one year when I had surgery just before Christmas. Some things are just too good to get rid of.

  • December 6, 2018 at 11:04 am

    Thank you for sharing these beautiful memories. We are having a gentle snow fall as I write this. I have continued to decorate using most of these traditions and greatly enjoy knowing that they are as meaningful to others as they are to me! Hopefully they will bring happy memories to my children too.

  • December 6, 2018 at 10:38 am

    What a great post! I still hang the silver icicles on my tree, and yes they take a long time to put on and off. My favourite ornament is a little red house my Mom and Dad bought for their first Christmas in 1947. That house has always been on our family tree, and will be passed on to grandkids, and great-grandkids as time goes on. It is the ornament everyone looks for when they see the tree.

  • December 6, 2018 at 10:36 am

    Same here, Linda!

  • December 6, 2018 at 9:49 am

    When our dad was alive us girls would get a lifesaver story book for Christmas. Dad has been gone for 36 years this coming January and I have continued this tradition every year since he passed. Of course it has grown now with grandkids, spouses and significant others. 20 of them this year. Thank you and Merry Christmas everyone. May we have peace on earth

  • December 6, 2018 at 8:37 am

    Thanks a lot for causing me to start the day all teary-eyed & nostalgic! Yes, I remember all of these plus the little “manger scene” as my mother called it. Thank you for reminding me (of how OLD I am!) Lol

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