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  1. Living Christmas 365 days a year — An American Annual of Christmas Literature and Art

    "The Annual of Christmas Literature and Art became an all-consuming passion for many years," says Leonard Flachman. It's a perfect summer day in Minneapolis, and under the shade of an oak tree former editors Leonard and Karen Walhof reminisce and leaf through Christmas Annuals that have been cherished by so many — including a young thirteen-year-old fresh off the boat from Greece…

     The Annual of Christmas Literature and Art, in the words of its founder and long-time editor Randolph ...
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    Crèchemania Blog
  2. A church burns and, miraculously, much of its glorious Byzantine iconography survives

    The iconostasis icons glow even more brightly amidst the blackness that is now the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Basil in Chicago. And the icon of the Nativity in the north wall where the fire started was saved as if an invisible hand had extinguished the flames a hair's breadth from Mother and Child…

     An icon and its stucco frame testify to the flames that miraculously stopped within a hair's breadth of Mother and Child. The Nativity, by Athanasios Clark, Saint Basil Greek Orthodox ...
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    Crèchemania Blog
  3. The Lantern Nativity's pop up action surprises, its beautiful art delights

    There's that "wow!" moment when a flat piece opens and morphs into a 3-D marvel, but it is the beguiling art that proves to be an endless delight...

     Eleven layers pop-up to create an impressive nativity scene — The Lantern Nativity. Rollover the image above with your mouse to see a side view, and its construction. 


     
    First and foremost, a pop-up nativity requires a sturdy base. That of the Lantern Nativity has the position of all its ...
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  4. A paper crèche classic — the Twelve-pointed Star Nativity

    One of the crèche world's gems...

     
    Simple construction — three pieces connect with tabs and slots — and beautiful art make the Twelve-pointed Star Nativity a favorite among crèche enthusiasts. 


     
    A smaller version of the Twelve-pointed Star Nativity from the Celso Battistini C. Rosa Collection features a curved front and mirror-image figures. (Photo by Celso Rosa.) It's always great fun to hear from my buddy Celso Rosa and ...
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    Alexis' Blog
  5. Got the die-cut blues? Don't despair — there's a remedy for that!

    A little slip, and the die-cutting machine can take a nasty bite out of a lovely crèche. Luckily, there's reconstructive surgery available, with Photoshop...

     
    The Twelve-pointed Star Nativity No. 3 — four layers, an unusual curved front, and extensive restoration due to die-cut damage. The Celso Battistini C. Rosa Collection. (Image by Crèchemania.) 

     A cut, or two, too deep: rollover the image above with your mouse to see the restored figures. ...
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