Nativity figurines are, for many people, the centerpieces of their Christmas décor. Christmas is one of the few holidays celebrated around the globe. And that is proven by the various types of nativity scenes that are produced all over the world. There are handcrafted pieces carved from wood or marble, and some scenes are extremely ornate in their craftsmanship. Others are simpler with minimal detail. There are hundreds of varieties available on the market, and thanks to the internet; it is easy to find exactly what style would complement one’s existing holiday décor.
Typical nativity figurines consist of Joseph, Jesus’ earthly father, Mary, his mother, and Jesus as an infant. Many times the set will also include a wooden centerpiece that these figures are placed inside of, or it is used as a backdrop. The infant Jesus is cast in a variety of ways. Some sets have him being held by his mother, others have him in what appears to be a watering trough filled with hay, while other sets have him in a wooden box filled with hay. These are the staples of any set. However, based on the Biblical story, there are others that are often sold to complete a set. Those figures may be a shepherd, an angel, the Star of Bethlehem, and likely the three Wiseman, Balthazar, Gaspar, and Melchior.
In addition to the nativity figurines listed above, many craftsmen add even more to the sets. Those pieces would include outbuildings, Mediterranean trees, angels, and various livestock, including sheep and camels. These complement the set as a whole. Additional people can also be added to the set for even more visual interest. Examples of those would be Jordan the spice merchant, Nathan the garlic and vegetable merchant, Amos the Carpenter, and Andrew the Potter, among others.
These sets also come in a variety of sizes. Some are small in stature and suitable for a side table or sofa table. Other sets are quite sizable and can sit on a baby grand piano or fill the base of a china hutch with interest and beauty. Many children enjoy having their own set in their bedrooms, helping them reflect upon the true meaning of Christmas during the hustle and bustle of the season.
With the vast selection of styles and materials, there is sure to be a set of nativity figurines that will be suitable for every home. There are also sets made of rubber to withstand the rigors of packing and unpacking each year, but also protect them from breakage when a family has little ones that like to move the pieces around.