Modern Nativity

I have been searching for a Nativity Set that I like for over two years now.  I've wanted something more modern than traditional, and not extremely outrageous in price.

I grew up helping my mom set up our nativity every year, and I loved to play with with it.  We had the Precious Moments set, but with a different manger setting that was woody and covered with fake moss.
Anyone else have precious moments back in the day?

I saw a photo of my niece playing with her Fisher Price Little People Nativity Set and thought it was adorable!  It reminds me of the precious moments, but not breakable.  I wondered, "If I never find a nativity that I like, I might have to get the Fisher Price one for myself!"  

I thought about the Willow Tree collection, but it seems like EVERYBODY has it these days.  I like it's simplicity, but it just wasn't me... and so I kept searching.

I thought about making my own Nativity, maybe wood, maybe clay, maybe sewn, maybe ?

But I wasn't sure which direction or look to go for.

I could make this one that would look cute framed on the wall.  It was also a good idea for sending to someone oversees, or away from home without much space.

Or this simple wooden home-made set:

This site had patterns you could use to make your own:

There were many cute wooden sets I found on Etsy:

Or I could go REALLY Modern with this nativity scene by Oliver Fabel. With the names of Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, the Three Wise Men, et al printed (in German on one side and English on the other) in a clean sans serif font on rectangular blocks of wood.

 This one has the same idea but adds color to the mix and fits like a puzzle inside the stable.  Design fans and those of a more minimalist bent will be greatly pleased by Sebastian Bergne’s modern Nativity set. Each character is made from a block of beech wood and is distinguishable only by its size, shape and colour. They all fit perfectly inside the beech stable (26 x 13.5 x 3cm) for easy storage. Colour Nativity, £135 (buysebastianbergne.com).

Hand painted and made of wood, this nativity scene from Germany has a modern look and feel, yet doesn't stray too far from traditional.

These porcelain figures are designed to resemble origami and are simple in pure white.

Valerie Atkisson's modern nativity set is a shiny, meticulously cut metallic decoration

No, none of these are quite right yet.  And then I found it!


My husband stumbled across it in the Alessi catalogue and we both flipped!  That's it!  I love their porcelain figures in simple shapes, but with color and a retro vibe that makes me smile.  It's happy, silly, fun, but more interesting than blocks.  It has recognizable objects that tell the true Christmas story and let kids explore setting up and playing with it!  It has everything I loved about my childhood set but with a modern take that better represents my personality!

[I do think it's hilarious that baby Jesus has a huge blonde curl! ha]

[Alessi Statuette Presepe Group Christmas figurine in porcelain. This series of "Figure", figurines, purposeless objects or whatever you want to call them, are presented for the first time. Their study has been going on since 1990s. The goal is to compare the intriguing world of porcelain figures, particularly the refined production tradition of European manufacturers from the 18th century onwards, with new methods of contemporary designers. Design: Massimo Giacon for Alessi, Italy. Approximate size: 6.25" x 5.75"]

I think I want the red one!

There are other figurines you can add to the basic set.  The camel is my favorite!

 Alessi also has more you can add to your collection that are more Holiday-based such as the Santa riding the reindeer and the snowman hugging the tree

Do you all have any family nativity sets you're especially fond of?


Austin & Terri said...

Haha! The one you picked is so cute! I love the little figurines :) They look so happy. My favorite is the one I grew up with (my mom gave it to me), which is a porcelain Avon set from the early 80's I think, haha!

Lindsey said...

That is totally you! You NEED to get it! We have the ever so popular Willow Tree one as you know. It was a wedding present for our MAY wedding. LOL We have just added to it every year.