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Investing in paper nativities?

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You, too, can invest in a beautiful paper nativity, but not for the hundreds of dollars of the crèche craze on the Internet — the brand-new Gothic Arch Nativity Premium Download. 

"The Frank-Perola Czech Advertising Sheet Free Download, courtesy of Svatava Vizinová. 
I know the world is going through an economic crisis, but are people really abandoning bonds, stocks — even gold! — and investing in paper nativities?

How else to explain the Internet crèche craze just now?

A tiny Christmas nativity card — 4 x 3 inches — can be yours for $200; a small (five-inch-wide) vintage fold out crèche was just sold for 202 euros (over $270); and you know those lovely cribs found in the Crèchemania Gallery? Well, I don't think I'll be adding to my collection any time soon: a medium-sized one just went for…

Yes! Sold! For 480 dollars!

Why, even things that I've been giving away for free for years are fetching good prices on the Web: check out a Czech nativity sheet selling 16 dollars. I'm talking about a nativity sheet similar to Crèchemania's Frank Perola Free Download.

But before you shell out 16 dollars, check out our free Czech nativity sheet offerings, courtesy of Crèchemania friends Svatava Vizinová and Milan Zabransky.

Svatava's Perola “Advertising” Nativity Sheet numbers 2,102 Free Downloads, a lovely celebration of the Nativity — and merchandising: a camel is laden with two large crates of coffee; an elephant is dwarfed by two huge bags of flour; a turbaned woman rushes with a tray of coffee; a Magi approaches with a bag of flour; and, since advertising is all about repeating the message, even a shepherd offers a loaf of bread.

Milan Zabransky's beautifully farmed Brandyská Nativity. 
Milan's first Free Download, shown at left, is the Brandyská [Brandy's] Nativity Sheet, a beautiful advertising crèche given away for free by enterprising merchants in the former Czechoslovakia. Beautiful art, with a catch: product placement. Chicory coffee? It's one of the gifts of the Magi!

Milan's beautifully framed diorama of the Brandyská sheet is topped by his hand-lettered sign of the Brandyská slogan extolling the joys of chicory coffee.

Below is the sheet itself, available as a Free Download for you to print and assemble.

Milan has also shared with us the Czech Nativity Sheet, yours free, with Milan's and our compliments! Get our chicory sheet for free — and buy a couple of real cans of coffee with your $16!

The Brandyská has proven quite popular: Kathy Hiatt writes, " I just downloaded this last night, so I'll have a few hours of cutting and putting this together. It will surely be a conversation piece on my mantel this year!"

And Hablina, from the Czech Republic says, "Thanks for a beautiful crib. I'm down with the flu, but cutting-and-pasting — my long-time hobby." To be honest, what she actually is, "Díky za krásný betlém, ležím s chřipkou a vystřihováním si krátím dlouhou chvíli."

Thank the Good Lord for Google translation!

And there's the pithy comment from Dreamer who says, "It's standing beneath our Christmas tree now; love it!"

What I've been dreaming about? What for me is the Holy Grail of paper nativities…

"We three Kings of Orient are/Bearing gifts we travel afar…" No, not gold, frankincense and myrrh, but chicory coffee and candy! — The Branyská Nativity Sheet Free Download. 
But, surely, in this cr¡eche climate, if I find that beautiful crèche in the marketplace any time soon in the crèche universe, its price just might be astronomical.

"Alexis," advises from Brazil crèche enthusiast and good friend Celso Rosa. "Look at those 5,226 Free Downloads of the Arches Crèche. If you only charged just a dollar a download…"

Celso — who, with Clube Amigos do Presépio is at the center of his own crèche constellation South of the Equator — is teasing, of course. He's the one who shared the Arches Crèche with us, and neither he, nor I would ever dream of not sharing Free ones along with our Premium Downloads.

And speaking of Premium Downloads, the Gothic Arch Nativity — shown at the top of the page — is our latest offering.


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