Fuel Your Creativity with Elaine Cantrell

Please welcome, fellow Astraea Press author, Elaine Cantrell to Fuel Your Creativity!

My Vintage Christmas

My latest hobby is collecting vintage Christmas ornaments.  I got into it when my granddaughter and I started putting up a theme tree each Christmas.  We’ve done candy, polka dots, cowboy and Indians, and birds, and this year we’re doing a vintage tree.  156234_181583701856730_3638142_nThe vintage bug bit me real hard!  The entire family is involved in the quest for vintage Christmas ornaments.  Every time my five year old grandson comes to visit he demands to see my newest ornament.  In fact, he told me to find him a Santa and some reindeer which of course I did.  He plays with them each time he comes over.

A word of warning: vintage ornaments are usually fragile, so the ornaments I bought him are plastic and not especially old or valuable.33980_181583795190054_1152233_n

There are all kinds of ornaments to collect:  German made, papier-mâché, blown-glass or curled paper, etc.  I started with Shiny Brite, an American brand popular in the 1940’s and 1950’s.  They are so beautiful!  They look nothing like modern ornaments and totally thrill me.  To me, a little wear does nothing to lessen their beauty.  I think of all the Christmases they’ve seen, the joys they’ve been a part of, the lives they’ve touched, and I treasure them even more! 65436_181583965190037_6699233_n

You can have fun all year going to estate or yard sales in search of ornaments.  Sometimes your grandma will have a few old ones she’ll part with.  Ebay sells lots of them too.  The thrill of the hunt is part of the fun.  If you decide to start your own collection you might want to read up on the subject first.  I bought a book that’s been very helpful.  It’s titled Christmas: 1940-1959 A Collector’s Guide To Decorations And Customs.  Not only does it have lots of information, it’s also beautiful. 164514_181583638523403_1611024_n

I would love to have an aluminum tree with a color wheel, but so far I can’t find one that doesn’t cost the earth.  If you’ve never seen one, just google it.  You might fall in love with that shiny metallic perfection.  I hope the pictures I’ve sent will inspire you to create your own vintage Christmas.

Happy Holidays!



Rest Thy Head:

Running away from a fiancé who betrayed her, Peyton O’Malley finds employment at a beautiful mountain inn called Rest Thy Head. She didn’t expect to live in the haunted room or to fall for the inn’s owner, a fire-scarred, war veteran who uses the inn to hide away from the world. She didn’t expect her sister to show up at Rest Thy Head either, much less her formidable mother.

Now, thanks to the aid of a friendly ghost, Peyton has a shot at true love, and so does her sister Ashley, provided the guys cooperate of course!

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My Biography

elainespictureElaine Cantrell was born and raised in South Carolina where she obtained a master’s degree in personnel services from Clemson University.  She is a member of Alpha Delta Kappa, an international honorary society for women educators and Romance Writers of America.  Her first novel, A New Leaf, was the 2003 winner of the Timeless Love Contest.  When she’s not writing or teaching, she enjoys movies, quilting, reading, and collecting vintage Christmas ornaments.


Find Elaine at the following locations.








Twitter handle: @elainecantrell


  1. Patricia Kiyono · ·

    Beautiful ornaments, Elaine! I’ve always loved theme trees, but never took the time to create one. Mine still has the mishmash of the things my kids made, and ones my students have given me. Thanks for sharing your pictures!


    1. My tree is a mish mash too. Lots of ornaments that the kids made, but they give the tree character. This year they did all the decorating, so there are some large clusters of ornaments.


  2. elainecsc2013 · ·

    My regular tree is a mishmash too, but the theme tree is so fun to do. Next year I may do a cowboy and indian ttree.


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