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A Vintage Christmas…And then some!

A Vintage ChristmasAnd then some!

This month’s Community section is written by Sam Gray, volunteer at the Museum.

I started volunteering at the Museum in 2012 and have helped out on everything from events stewarding to exhibition installations.

Walking into the small object store for the first time was quite exciting. A whole room filled with mysterious boxes containing varieties of secret treats. Like a child in a toy shop I didn’t know where to start. We walked up and down the aisles looking for those magical words that would hint at the things we sought, ‘Toys’, ‘Nutcracker’, ‘Biscuit Tins’…

Reading the handwritten labels on these unassuming boxes felt like peeking at your Christmas presents early and I must say I felt a thrill when we located each object and lifted its box down from the shelves, handling it with great care.

Lifting the lids revealed layers of delicately packed tissue paper that made wonderful crinkling sounds in the quiet of the store. Each layer we removed brought us closer to seeing the objects packed inside, all of them having been lovingly wrapped to keep them safe.

Taking out each little parcel brought exclaims of delight as we uncovered the objects that we would use in A Vintage Christmas. My favourites were the food tins, with their beautiful colours and seasonal feel. A particular highlight was the unwrapping of the Glacier Mint tin as I loved the design and I was immediately transported to one of my own Christmas memories, I could almost smell the mint!

The objects that we chose are now on display in Abbots Hall as a part of the A Vintage Christmas exhibition, and every time I walk past these objects we have displayed I will smile at my own new memory.

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